Viola nuttallii var. praemorsa

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  • Scientific Name: Viola nuttallii var. praemosa
  • Family: Violaceae
  • Common Names: canary violet, upland yellow violet, yellow montane violet
  • Synonyms/Misapplications: V. praemorsa, V, praemosa vars. flavovirens, linguifolia
  • Codon: VIONUT

Photo Anita Goodrich, also featured on Main Page


Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Subkingdom: Viridiplantae
Phylum: Tracheophyta
Subphylum: Spermatophytina
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Rosanae
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Violaceae
Genus: Viola L.
Species: Viola nuttallii Pursh
Subspecies: Viola nuttalli var. praemorsa (Douglas ex Lindl.) S. Watson (not accepted)
  • Viola praemorsa var. praemorsa Douglas ex Lindl. (accepted)



BurkeGeneral: Perennial from short, erect rhizomes, the stems up to 15 cm. long. Leaves: Leaf blades conspicuously hairy, thick and fleshy, entire, ovate-lanceolate, 5-10 cm. long; petiole 5-15 cm. long; stipules attached to the petiole, the free portion few-toothed.

Flowers: Flowers with peduncles shorter than the leaves; flowers 8-15 mm. long, yellow, the upper petals brownish-backed, the lower 3 penciled with brownish-purple, the lateral pair bearded; style head bearded, rounded.

Fruit: Fruit a hairy, 3-valved capsule, ovary superior, placentation parietal.[2]

BCGeneral: Perennial herb from a fibrous root, without stolons; stems erect, sparsely to densely hairy, largely underground but the aerial stems 6-30 cm tall.

Leaves: Basal leaves egg-shaped to lanceolate, entire or slightly wavy, sparsely to densely hairy, the blades 2-10 cm long, 1-3.5 cm wide, the stalks 3-15 cm long; stem leaves lacking or few, similar; stipules joined to the stem with the free end entire to toothed, sparsely to densely hairy.

Flowers: Inflorescence of single, axillary flowers; petals 5, yellow, the lower petal 12-20 mm long including the 1- to 2-mm long spur, the lower 3 usually brown-penicilled and sometimes tinged with brown, the lateral pair bearded; sepals 5, lanceolate; style heads bearded.

Fruits: Capsules, smooth to hairy, 6-11 mm long; seeds dark brown.

Habit: Perennial herb 7.5--30 cm, glabrous to densely puberulent. Stem: prostrate to erect, generally several, clustered on 1--several subterranean caudices from woody rhizome. Leaf: simple; basal 1--5 per caudex, petiole 4.3--19.2 cm, blade 2.3--8.5 cm, 1.4--3.7 cm wide, elliptic or ovate, entire, wavy, or generally irregularly crenate to serrate, base tapered, often oblique to +- truncate, tip acute or obtuse; cauline blade 2.6--5.8 cm, 1.3--3.5 cm wide, like basal. Inflorescence: axillary; peduncle 2.7--26 cm. Flower: sepals lanceolate, ciliate or not; petals deep lemon-yellow, upper 2, sometimes lateral 2 maroon or +- brown abaxially, lower 3 veined brown-purple, lateral 2 bearded with cylindric hairs, lowest 12--20 mm. Fruit: 6--12 mm, elliptic to oblong, glabrous to minutely puberulent. Seed: 2--3 mm, medium to dark brown, +- 1/3 length covered by outgrowth.

Perennial, rhizomatous herb with axillary yellow flowers, to 30 cm tall.[3] Stems several, erect, borne from underground caudices,[3] hairy.[4] Leaves mostly basal,[4] not coarsely veined, crenate to serrate,[5] hairy, fleshy, petiolate, ovate-lanceolate, to 10 cm, petioles to 15 cm long.[2] Flowers 5-merous, solitary, axillary, zygomorphic; sepals 5, lanceolate;[3] petals 5, lowermost larger and spurred, upper 4 in 2 pairs;[5] lower 3 petals with brown-purple veins, lateral 2 bearded;[3] stamens 5, connivent around pistil;[5] pistil 3-carpellate with 1 style,[5] bearded stigma[2] and superior ovary with parietal placentation becoming a ellipsoid to oblong[5] 3-valved capsule.[2]

Bloom Period



Both sides of the Cascades, into Northern California, east to Montana, Wyoming and Northern Utah.[5]


Grasslands, shrub-steppe, open forest. Moisture Regime-Moist Shade Tolerance-Intolerant

Photo Gallery[2]


  1. Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved from
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 WTU Herbarium, Burke Museum, & University of Washington. Retrieved from
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Jepson Herbarium Online Flora. Retrieved from
  4. 4.0 4.1 E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia. Retrieved from
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 Hitchcock, C. L., Cronquist, A., Giblin, D., & Legler, B. et al. (2018). Flora of the Pacific Northwest: an illustrated manual. Seattle: University of Washington Press.