Arrow-Leaved Violet , Viola sagittata

Arrow-Leaved Violet

Viola sagittata

Benefits: Pollinator Benefit Graphic
Sun Shade: Plant Light Requirements Graphic
Bloom Time: Spring
Hardiness Zones: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7
Soil Conditions: Clay, Loam, Sand, Rocky
Soil Moisture: Dry, Moist, Medium
Color: Blue, Purple
Fragrance: No
Height: 4 to 8 inches
Spacing: 6 inches

Arrow-Leaved Violet (Viola sagittata) is a perennial wildflower that consists of a rosette of basal leaves and flowering stalks up to 6 inches tall. The blades of the basal leaves are 1½-4 inches long and about one-third as much across. They are sagittate or hastate in shape, slightly crenate, and occasionally ciliate along their margins. At the bottom of each side of these blades, are small basal lobes. The upper blade surface is medium green and usually hairless, while the lower surface is pale green and either hairless or hairy along the veins. The petioles are light green to purplish green and hairless. They are usually a little shorter than the blades. From the center of a rosette of basal leaves, there develops one or more pedicels with individual flowers directly from the root stalk. The slender pedicels are light green to purplish green and hairless. Each pedicel curves downward at its apex, causing the flower to nod. Individual flowers are about ¾-inch across, consisting of 5 purple-violet petals, 5 light green sepals, and the reproductive organs. Near the center of each flower, the lateral petals have small tufts of white hair. At the base of the lowermost petal, there is a patch of white with prominent purple-violet veins. There is also a nectar spur that develops from behind the lowermost petal. It is rather short and slightly curved. The sepals are linear-lanceolate in shape and hairless. They are smaller than the petals. The blooming period occurs from mid-spring to early summer and lasts about 3-4 weeks. Later in the summer, fertilized flowers are replaced by light green seed capsules about 1/3-inch long that are oblongoid-ellipsoid in shape. At maturity, each capsule divides into 3 parts, ejecting its seeds. During the summer, cleistogamous (self-fertile) flowers are also produced that lack petals and remain inconspicuous; these flowers also develop into seed capsules that split open at maturity. The root system consists of a short narrow crown with fibrous roots; sometimes rhizomes also develop that form clonal offsets.

Habitats include sand prairies, sandy shrub prairies, clay prairies, riverbanks, rocky upland woodlands, limestone or sandstone glades, and abandoned fields containing heavy clay soil. Arrow-Leaved Violet benefits from occasional disturbance that reduces the encroachment of woody vegetation.

The preference is full or partial sun, moist to dry-mesic conditions, and soil containing loam, clay, rocky material, or sand.

 Further Information

 Wisconsin Fruit Trees
 Wisconsin Edible Berry Shrubs
 Widsconsin Edible Plants-Eat On The Wild Side
 8 Dandelion Recipes
 Wisconsin Native Plant Nurseries

Bees flying footer graphic