Ed Golson Outdoor Education

common blue violet

Scientific Name: Viola papilionacea

Description: This wildflower is one of the first plants to bloom every spring. It is one of the plants known as a spring ephemeral because in order for it to survive, it must bloom very early in the spring before leaves appear on the trees above. This ensures it has enough light to grow.   

The flowers of this plant are small (about ½ inch wide), but brightly colored. They are usually a bright bluish-purple, but can sometimes be a much paler color. The leaves are heart shaped. The blue violets grow in large clumps or colonies. Each individual plant can grow up to about 3 to 8 inches tall.  

These violets are quite common and can be found in spring woodlots throughout most of the Eastern U.S. They usually prefer damp woods and meadows and are common along roadsides.


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