Connecticut Plants
Coast Violet
Viola brittoniana Pollard

Note the leaves of this species, which are cut into narrow segments. Similar cut leaves are found on birdfoot violet, but that species has flowers with prominent orange stamens in the middle, in contrast to the white throat of coast violet flowers. Early blue violet has leaves that are more shallowly cut, and most other violets have heart-shaped leaves.

Coast violet is an endangered species in Connecticut.

  • Family: violet (Violaceae)
  • Habitat: sandy or peaty soil
  • Height: 4-8 inches
  • Flower size: 1/2 to 3/4 inch
  • Flower color: purple with a white throat
  • Flowering time: May to June
  • Origin: native
Viola brittoniana Pollard
Viola brittoniana Pollard

Coast violet leaves are quite unlike the typical heart-shaped violet leaves. The leaves can be divided into very narrow segments...

Viola brittoniana Pollard

...or into somewhat wider segments...

Viola brittoniana Pollard

...or the leaves can have a middle segment wider than the flanking segments, though the middle segment is narrower than that of early blue violet leaves. The yellow speckles here are pine pollen, not a characteristic of the leaf.