Violet flower

   Violet, an attractive flower, native to North America, and belonging to the genus Viola, which contains over 250 species. Two kinds of plants grow, stemmed and stemless. In the stemless plants the stalked flowers arise from the rosette of basal leaves. The leaves are simple, usually heart-shaped, while some forms, like the bird's foot violet, have deeply divided leaves. The flower is irregular in shape; one of the five petals is large and spurred and the spur collects nectar. The flower color is usually violet but there areViola palustris, the marsh; V. odorata, the sweet; V. hirta, the hairy; V. canina, Gerard's or the dog violet; and V. tricolor, the pansy violet, pansy, or heart's-ease. The first has a subterranean creeping rootstock, glabrous stems, reniform cordate leaves, and white or lilac scentless flowers. The second has broadly cordate leaves, and fragrant blue, white, or reddish purple flowers; found in woods, pastures, or on banks. The third, with faintly scented flowers, is found chiefly in the E. of England and Scotland, and parts of North America. The fourth, with broadly cordate leaves, ciliate dentate stipules, and blue, lilac, gray, or white flowers, is common in woods, dry pastures, clefts of rocks, and banks; and the fifth, having flowers variegated, purple, white, and yellow, is frequent on banks and in fields. The bruised leaves of V. tricolor smell like peach kernels; they were once believed to be efficacious in the cure of skin diseases. The petals of V. odorata are used as a laxative for children. The seeds have similar qualities, and the root is emetic and purgative. V. ovata is a reputed antidote to the poison of the rattlesnake. V. serpens, a small, procumbent, Himalayan herb, yields an oil. The flowers are considered diaphoretic and laxative, the seeds diuretic and emetic.
blue, white, and yellow forms. Later in the season inconspicuous flower buds on short stalks are formed near the base of the plant. Five of the most familiar species are native in temperate Europe and America: