Viola sororia 'Rubra' - COMMON VIOLET 'RUBRA'

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Cultivar with purple-red flowers.

The flowers start early spring and can last well into the summer months (April to June, and rebloom in later summer or autumn).

It grows 4-6" tall x 6" wide, forms small clumps/rosettes of partially evergreen leaves, flowers are big, about 1" wide.

It is native to whole eastern part of USA, see the USDA distribution map. Naturally occurs in moist blackland prairies, savannas, open woods, shaded banks and borders of rivers, lakes and creeks. Also can be found on waste areas, urban lawns and landscapes.

Grows the best in average soils, with moderate moisture, preferably in half shade, or places with some little shade during the day (it will tolerate full sun, if the soil stays moist). It is adaptable to many soil types, including clay. Tolerates some shorter droughts too.

The flowers are not often visited by insects, but they attract some bees (Mason, Halictid), skippers, Syrphid flies, and other insects.  But the leaves are important food source for the caterpillars of many Fritillary butterflies (Diana, Variegated, Aphrodite, Meadow and Silver-Border Fritillary).

The seeds are partially distributed by ants. Various upland gamebirds and small mammals occasionally eat the seeds, incl. the Wild Turkey, Bobwhite, Mourning Dove, and White-Footed Mouse. Wild Turkeys can also eat the leaves and fleshy roots of Viola spp. (Violets). Deer and rabbit may occasionally feed on leaves, but it is not preferable food for them.

Can be used as groundcover in shaded areas, edges of woodland gardens, woodland gardens, front of naturalistic borders or also naturalized in lawn (they survive mowing, if it is not too low).

This small perennials spreads slowly with short rhizomes and stays in dense clumps, but in ideal condition can self-seed too much and look up to "weedy".

It can be combines with Aquilegia canadensis, Asarum, Phlox divaricata, Chrysogonum virginianum, Geranium maculatum, Iris cristata, Polygogonatum, Silene regia, Smilacina, Spigelia marilandica or lower grassed or sedges like Carex pennsylvanica.

Pot Size : square 3.5" x 4" deep perennial pot