Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
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Viola odorata
ENGLISH VIOLET, SWEET VIOLET

Higher Taxonomy
Family: ViolaceaeView Description 

Common Name: VIOLET FAMILY
Habit: Annual, perennial herb, [small shrub, tree, vine], from caudices, taproots, rhizomes, or stolons; hairs 0 or simple. Stem: 0 or prostrate to erect. Leaf: basal, cauline, or both, alternate, [opposite], simple to compound, petioled; stipules generally small; blade linear to round, entire to toothed or lobed. Inflorescence: flowers 1 [raceme], axillary or scapose; peduncle bractlets 2, generally alternate. Flower: bisexual, bilateral [radial]; sepals 5, free, basal lobes present [0], generally not prominent; petals 5, free, lowest often largest, base +- elongated into a spur; stamens 5, alternate petals, filaments short, wide, with large in-pointing hairs, lowest 2 anthers with basal nectaries extending into petal spur; ovary superior, chamber 1, placentas parietal, 3, ovules [1] generally many, style 1, often enlarged distally, stigma often oblique or hooked, hairy or not. Fruit: capsule [berry], 3-valved, loculicidal, explosively dehiscent or not. Seed: generally with outgrowth, attractive to ants.
Genera In Family: 23 genera, 830 species: worldwide, generally temperate, tropics (especially higher elevations). Note: Lengths of lowest petal including spur.
eFlora Treatment Author: R. John Little
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: ViolaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: VIOLET
Leaf: generally deciduous. Flower: sepals +- equal, entire; petals unequal, lowest generally largest, with spur generally < 3 [20] mm, lateral 2 equal, generally spreading, upper 2 equal, erect or reflexed, overlapped or not, lateral 2 generally, others sometimes with beard of variously shaped hairs basally; cleistogamous flowers generally present, petals 0. Fruit: ovoid to oblong, hairy or not. Seed: 8--75.
Species In Genus: +- 500 species: temperate, worldwide, Hawaii, Andes. Etymology: (Latin: classical name) Note: Important orns including Viola odorata, Viola tricolor L. (Johnny-jump-up, wild pansy), Viola ×wittrockiana Gams (garden pansy).

Viola odorata L.
NATURALIZED
Habit: Perennial herb to 12 cm, from thin rhizomes, spreading by leafy, green stolons; finely hairy. Stem: 0. Leaf: simple, basal, ascending to erect, petiole 2--17 cm, blade 1.5--7 cm, 1.5--5 cm wide, elliptic or ovate, crenate, base cordate, tip obtuse to round. Inflorescence: scapose; peduncle 4--15 cm. Flower: sepals lanceolate, ciliate; petals deep to pale blue-violet, pale blue, or white, generally white basally, lateral 2 generally bearded with cylindric hairs, lowest 12--22 mm, generally veined purple, spur +- 3 mm. Fruit: 5--8 mm, ovoid, flecked purple, puberulent. Seed: 3--4 mm, brown. Chromosomes: 2n=20.
Ecology: Garden escape reported in shady, moist areas generally in riparian habitats; Elevation: 30--1255 m. Bioregional Distribution: NCo, ScV, CCo, SnFrB, SnGb; Distribution Outside California: to British Columbia, eastern North America; Australia, native to Eurasia. Flowering Time: Jan--May
eFlora Treatment Author: R. John Little
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Citation for this treatment: R. John Little 2016. Viola odorata, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=48260, accessed on July 26, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on July 26, 2016.


Viola odorata
click for enlargement
© 2008 Keir Morse

More photos of Viola odorata in CalPhotos


Geographic subdivisions for Viola odorata:
NCo, ScV, CCo, SnFrB, SnGb;
Markers link to CCH specimen records. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues. Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
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map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

View elevation by latitude chart
Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.