Page author: David Giblin
Lycium barbarum

Distribution: Chiefly east of the Cascades in Washington; widely distributed throughout North America.

Habitat: Disturbed ground.

Flowers: June-September

Origin: Introduced from Eurasia

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Glabrous shrub with long, weak, sparsely thorny, arched or climbing branches, 1-6 m. tall.


Leaves short-petiolate, entire, dull, elliptic to lanceolate or oblanceolate, up to 7 cm. long and 3.5 cm. wide on new growth, much smaller on old wood.


Flowers 1-3 in the leaf axils on pedicels 0.7-2 cm. long; calyx tubular, with 3-6 short lobes; corolla lavender or purplish, 9-14 mm. long, tubular, with 5 broad, spreading lobes about equaling the tube; stamens 5; style solitary, ovary superior.


Fruit a red berry, ellipsoid or ovoid, 1-2 cm. long.

Accepted Name:
Lycium barbarum L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 192. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Lycium halimifolium Mill. [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Lycium barbarum in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Lycium barbarum checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Lycium barbarum atlas page.

CalPhotos: Lycium barbarum photos.

USDA Plants: Lycium barbarum information.

23 photographs:
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