*Datura stramonium

Family Solanaceae

Common Thornapple

Stout annual herb. Longevity less than one year.

Flowers: White or pale lavender, trumpet shaped summer – autumn.

Fruit: Dry woody capsule 2 – 5 cm long covered in more than 100 spines, splitting into 4 segments.

Seed: Black or grey, 600 – 700 in each fruit. Up to 30 000 seeds per plant, mature summer. Locally dispersed. Soil stored seedbank, seed dormancy probably physiological.

Gallery images: seed, seedling, rootstock, resprout


  • Probably native of North America.
  • Weed of roadsides and wastelands in full sun.
  • Occasional in woodland and grassland at the Australian Botanic Garden.
  • Adult plants killed by fire.
  • Significant seedling emergence after fire in grassland area in 2005.

Asterisk * indicates exotic species naturalised at the Australian Botanic Garden.

Ecology of Cumberland Plain Woodland

Datura stramonium plant

Datura stramonium flower

Datura stramonium fruit