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Viola cucullata - Aiton.

Common Name Marsh Blue Violet
Family Violaceae
USDA hardiness 3-8
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Wet places, often in open woods[187]. Wet meadows, springs, bogs, swamps etc[43].
Range Eastern N. America - Quebec to Ontario and south to Georgia.
Edibility Rating    (3 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (1 of 5)
Care (info)
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Wet Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Viola cucullata Marsh Blue Violet


flickr.com/photos/56981926@N00
Viola cucullata Marsh Blue Violet
Thomas G. Barnes @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Barnes, T.G., and S.W. Francis. 2004. Wildflowers and ferns of Kentucky. University Press of Kentucky.

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Viola cucullata is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.2 m (0ft 8in) by 0.2 m (0ft 8in).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 3. It is in flower from May to July. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Insects, Cleistogomy (self-pollinating without flowers ever opening). The plant is self-fertile.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist or wet soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Viola obliqua Hill

Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Ground Cover; Bog Garden;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers  Leaves
Edible Uses: Tea

Young leaves and flower buds - raw or cooked[61, 105]. When added to soup they thicken it in much the same way as okra[85, 159, 177]. A tea can be made from the leaves[85].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Analgesic  Dysentery  Poultice

An infusion of the plant has been used in the treatment of coughs, colds and dysentery[257]. A poultice of the leaves has been used to reduce the pain of headaches[257]. A poultice of the crushed root has been applied to boils[257].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Repellent

A good ground cover plant but it is slow to thicken up and may need weeding for the first year or so[197]. An infusion of the root has been used to soak corn seeds before planting them in order to keep off insects[257]. Faunal Associations: The floral nectar of Marsh Violet attracts bumblebees, mason bees (Osmia spp.), Halictid bees, Andrenid bees, bee flies (Bombyliidae), butterflies, and skippers (Robertson, 1929). Some of the bees also collect pollen. An oligolectic bee, Andrena violae, visits the flowers of Marsh Violet and other Viola spp. (violets). The caterpillars of several Fritillary butterflies feed on the foliage of violets primarily in open areas: Boloria bellona (Meadow Fritillary), Boloria selene myrina (Silver-Bordered Fritillary), Euptoieta claudia (Variegated Fritillary), Speyeria aphrodite (Aphrodite Fritillary), Speyeria atlantis (Atlantis Fritillary), Speyeria cybele (Great Spangled Fritillary), and Speyeria idalia (Regal Fritillary). Other insect feeders include caterpillars of the moths Elaphria grata (Grateful Midget) and Eubaphe mendica (The Beggar), the leaf-mining larvae of Ametastegia pallipes (Violet Sawfly), the aphid Neotoxoptera violae, and the thrips Odontothrips pictipennis. The seeds and other parts of violets are occasionally eaten by such birds as the Ruffed Grouse, Wild Turkey, and Mourning Dove, and they are also consumed by the White-Footed Mouse, Pine Mouse, and Eastern Chipmunk. Similarly, the foliage of these low-growing plants is a source of food for the Cottontail Rabbit and Wood Turtle (Clemmys insculpta) [1-6].

Special Uses

Food Forest  Ground cover

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Prefers a cool moist well-drained humus-rich soil in partial or dappled shade and protection from scorching winds. Very intolerant of drought[187]. Succeeds in dense shade[197]. Tolerates sandstone and limestone soils but becomes chlorotic if the pH is too high. Prefers a pH between 6 and 6.5. This plant produces cleistogamous flowers as well as the usual insect pollinated flowers[187]. It usually self-sows freely[188]. All members of this genus have more or less edible leaves and flower buds, though those species with yellow flowers can cause diarrhoea if eaten in large quantities[62, 85, 159]. A polymorphic species[188]. there are many named forms, selected for their ornamental value[200].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

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Plant Propagation

Seed - best sown in the autumn in a cold frame. Sow stored seed in early spring in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out in the summer. Division in the autumn or just after flowering. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions, though we have found that it is best to pot up smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse or cold frame until they are growing away well. Plant them out in the summer or the following spring.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

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Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

Expert comment

Author

Aiton.

Botanical References

4350200

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Subject : Viola cucullata  
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