A native perennial with spiny stems and leaves; the fruits are toxic and look like tiny yellow tomatoes. Flowers in elongated clusters (racemes) at ends of stems, white to purple, about 1 inch across with 5 united petals, forming a five-pointed star with 5 large, yellow stamens protruding. Blooms May–October. Leaves with pointed lobes (somewhat resembling red oak leaves), with 4 lateral lobes and 1 shallow terminal lobe. Does not have bristles, but stems and midribs of leaves have yellow prickles. Fruit a smooth berry, yellow when ripe, like a tiny tomato, which persists through the winter. Most parts of the plant are toxic if eaten.