Q: I have a plant growing beside my patio that looks like a watermelon plant but has briars. It is a plant not a vine, has small yellow blooms and has small briars on the stem. Has not borne fruit yet. The blooms are yellow about 1″ in diameter and have 4 or 5 filament or anther, one of which is red or rust color at the tip.
A: It’s buffalobur nightshade, Solanum rostratum.
It is kin to tomato, potato and eggplant but you’d never want to eat anything from this nasty looking plant – all parts are toxic.
Beyond that, the stem is covered with sharp spines and the seedpod has needles that will quickly draw blood.
Pull it out and destroy it unless you enjoy pain in your garden!