Viola sororia Willd.
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* Viola septentrionalis and Viola sororia are now considered by several authorities to be the same species.
Family: Violaceae
Genus: Viola
Species Synonyms: Viola x champlainensis House
Viola floridana Brainerd
Viola x insessa House
Viola latiuscula Greene
Viola x melissifolia Greene
Viola x montivaga House
Viola x napae House
Viola palmata var. sororia (Willd.) Pollard
Viola papilionacea Pursh p.p.
Viola papilionacea var. priceana (Pollard) Alexander
Viola priceana Pollard
Viola septentrionalis Greene
Viola x subaffinis House
Common Names: hooded blue violet
downy blue violet
woolly blue violet
Canada: east-central Saskatchewan – Manitoba – Ontario – southwestern Quebec
Saskatchewan: east-central Saskatchewan; Pasquia Hills – Carragana – Arran
Ecoregion: Aspen Parkland, Boreal Transition, Mid-Boreal Upland
Saskatchewan: moist deciduous or mixed woods
Provincial Status According
to Harms (2003):
Nature Conservancy Status:
Saskatchewan Species at
Risk Status:
Hooded blue violet is threatened because of extreme rarity in Saskatchewan. This species has only been located in one small region of the province and is usually locally sparse.
Rhizomes: thick, fleshy
Stems: leafy stem absent; woody base frequently branching; runners absent
Leaves: basal, stalks long-hairy, blades 2 – 3 cm wide, oval to kidney-shaped, base distinctly heart-shaped, tip obtuse to acute, young leaves densely long-hairy, dark green, margin uniformly toothed
Inflorescence: flowers solitary; stalks usually shorter than to equal to leaves; self-fertilizing flowers on creeping stalks
Flowers: perfect, irregular; sepals 5, lance-shaped to oval, margin short-hairy at base, ear-like lobes appressed; petals 5, spurred petal beardless or sparingly hairy, lateral petals bearded, spur blunt, deep violet to purple; stamens 5; ovary superior
Fruits: capsule 3-valved, yellowish, hairless
1 Plants without leafy stems; leaves and flower stalks arising from a woody base and/or plants with runners
1 Plants with leafy stems; flowers axillary, runners and woody bases absent
2 Leaves deeply divided; plants of prairies and dry areas
V. pedatifida
2 Leaves toothed or lobed but not deeply divided or margin entire; plants of meadows to moist woods or boggy areas
3 Flowers white, may have purplish lines towards the base
3 Flowers blue to violet
4 Plants without runners; leaves circular to kidney-shaped
V. renifolia
4 Plants with runners; leaves oval to kidney-shaped
5 Leaves hairy, at least when young; leaf and flower stalks reddish
V. blanda var. palustriformis
5 Leaves hairless; leaf and flower stalks greenish
6 Leaves 2 – 5 cm long, 2.5 – 3.5 cm wide
V. palustris var. brevipes
6 Leaves 1 – 2 cm long, 1 – 1.5 cm wide
V. macloskeyi ssp. pallens
7 Rhizomes thick and fleshy; runners absent; woody base usually short and thick; lateral petals bearded or not; sepals with or without marginal hairs
7 Rhizome slender and cord-like; runners present or absent; woody base present or absent; lateral petals always bearded (except V. selkirkii); sepals without marginal hairs
8 Spurred petal beardless
V. sororia
8 Spurred petal bearded
9 Sepals with marginal hairs
V. septentrionalis
9 Sepals without marginal hairs
V. nephrophylla
10 Runners present; petal spur much shorter than the blade; lateral petals bearded; plants of moist meadows and streams
V. palustris var. palustris
10 Runners absent; petal spur to 2/3 as long as blade; lateral petals beardless; plants of woods and rocky slopes
V. selkirkii
11 Leaves lance-shaped to narrowly oval; flowers yellow, may have purple veins at the base
11 Leaves heart-shaped to kidney-shaped; flowers yellow, white or blue
12 Leaves usually at least three times as long as wide, lance-shaped to elliptic
V. nuttallii
12 Leaves less than three times as long as wide, narrowly oval
V. vallicola var. vallicola
13 Flowers yellow, with purplish-brown veins; plants of rich deciduous woods
V. pubescens var. scabriuscula
13 Flowers white to lilac or blue; plants of woods or meadows
14 Flowers white inside, yellow at base and with purplish veins or purple tinge on outside; stipules entire
V. canadensis var. rugulosa
14 Flowers blue to lilac; stipules toothed
15 Leaves thin, hairless; stipules oval; flowers lilac
V. conspersa
15 Leaves thick, glabrous to densely pubescent; stipules linear; flowers deep blue
16 Leaves densely hairy
V. adunca var. adunca
16 Leaves hairless
V. labradorica