|Berlandier Wolfberry (Lycium berlandieri)|
DESCRIPTION: Shrub to 7'. Bark gray to maroon colored and somewhat spiny. Flowers whitish to lavender, tubular, 4-5 lobed, to 3/8" long. Stamens stick out beyond petals. Round berry is red at maturity. Leaves simple, smooth-edged, linear to spatula-shaped to 1.25" long. Solanaceae (Nightshade or Potato) Family.
NATURAL HISTORY: Flowers bloom mainly spring through fall. Flowers are heterostylous, meaning some flowers have long stamens and short pistils (thrum flowers) and other flowers have short stamens and long pistils (pin flowers). This reduces the chance of self-pollination and promotes cross-pollination because the long stamens of the thrum flowers leave pollen on the part of the bee that the long pistils of the pin flowers contact the bee and vice versa. Cross-pollination promotes genetic diversity (see To Have Sex or Not) and thus adaptability.