This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol3", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Shrubs, or woody vines, often spiny, with small alternate entire leaves, commonly with smaller ones fascicled in their axils, and white greenish or purple, axillary or terminal, solitary or clustered flowers. Calyx campanulate, 3-5-lobed or -toothed, not enlarged in fruit, persistent at the base of the berry. Corolla funnelform, salverform, or campanulate, the tube short or slender, the limb 5-lobed (rarely 4-lobed), the lobes obtuse. Stamens 5 (rarely 4), exserted, or included; filaments filiform, sometimes dilated at the base; anther-sacs longitudinally dehiscent. Ovary 2-celled; style filiform; stigma capitate or 2-lobed. Berry globose, ovoid, or oblong. [Named from the country Lycia.]
About 75 species, widely distributed in temperate and warm regions. Besides the following, introduced from Europe, some 17 native species occur in the western parts of North America. Type species: Lycium afreum L.
Lycium Barbarum var vulgare Ait. f. Hort. Kew. Ed. 2, 2: 3. 1811.
Glabrous, spiny or unarmed; stems slender, climbing or trailing, branched, 6°-25° long, the branches somewhat angled, the spines, when present, slender, about ¥ long. Leaves lanceolate, oblong, or spatu-late, acute or obtuse at the apex, narrowed into short petioles, firm, 1/2'-1 1/2' long, 2"-4" wide; flowers 2-5 together in the axils, or solitary; peduncles filiform, spreading, 6"-12" long; calyx-lobes ovate, acute, or obtuse, 1 1/2" long; corolla funnelform, purplish changing to greenish, 4"-6" broad, its lobes ovate-oblong; stamens slightly exserted; berry oval, orange-red.