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Walter's Violet Viola walteri

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
vy-OH-la WAL-ter-ee
Description

Walter's Violet is a native wildflower of the Southeastern and Appalachian North America.  It boasts solitary, showy purple flowers that grows in moist deciduous woodland areas, forests and rocky ledges.  It will not be found in pine forests.  It prefers partial to full shade well-drained acidic to slightly alkaline sandy loam soils.  Propagate by seed, root division, stem and root cuttings.  Typically, does well when transplanted.

It can be distinguished from other violas by its trailing stems, rounded leaves, blue flowers and fimbriated (fringed) stipules.  

Its basal leaves are partially evergreen, new growth will commence in the early spring.   Its form is caulescent, meaning leafy-stemmed.  At times, it may appear as acaulescent or stemless.  

It will colonize when grown in the proper conditions which includes adequate moisture.  It spreads by both its above-ground runners and by rhizomes.  In dry locations, it will remain spaced, not colonizing.  

One of the earliest native violas to bloom.  

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Typically will not flourish in pine forests.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Silver Gem'
    Silvery heart-shaped foliage with blue-lavender flowers.
'Silver Gem'
Tags:
#evergreen#deciduous#wildlife plant#purple flowers#native perennial#blue flowers#winter interest#groundcover#colonies#native wildflower#larval host plant#rocky soils tolerant#native#butterfly friendly#pollinator garden#woodlands#colonizing#winter annual#fritillary butterflies
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Silver Gem'
    Silvery heart-shaped foliage with blue-lavender flowers.
'Silver Gem'
Tags:
#evergreen#deciduous#wildlife plant#purple flowers#native perennial#blue flowers#winter interest#groundcover#colonies#native wildflower#larval host plant#rocky soils tolerant#native#butterfly friendly#pollinator garden#woodlands#colonizing#winter annual#fritillary butterflies
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Viola
    Species:
    walteri
    Family:
    Violaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Root Cutting
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Southeastern U.S.A. west to OH and TX
    Distribution:
    AL , AR , FL , GA , KY , LA , MS , NC , OH , SC , TN , TX , VA
    Wildlife Value:
    This plant supports Fritillary butterfly larvae. Attracts bees and butterflies.
    Play Value:
    Attractive Flowers
    Attracts Pollinators
    Easy to Grow
    Shade
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 1 in. - 0 ft. 6 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 1 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Ground Cover
    Herb
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Wildflower
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Semi-evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Creeping
    Horizontal
    Prostrate
    Spreading
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5a, 5b, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Spring
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Blue
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Solitary
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    1" flowers, the lateral petals are bearded.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Semi-evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Cordate
    Orbicular
    Ovate
    Reniform
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Light green, mottled (spots or smears of color), simple leaves.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Shade Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Mass Planting
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Heavy Shade
    Wet Soil