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Plant Profile: Viola labradorica

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANative to moist woodlands in Canada, northern United States and Greenland, Labrador violet does well even in much of the South. It is a low growing herbaceous perennial and spreads by creeping rhizomes and self-seeding. The heart shaped leaves are one inch across and tinged with purple. The mauve flowers are ¾ inch wide and suffused with purple. They appear in spring and fall and sporadically all summer long in regions with cool summers. Labrador violet can be used as a ground cover, is an excellent choice for a rock garden and can also be grown in a container. This plant is thought to be the same as Viola riviniana Purpurea.

Type: Herbaceous perennial

Bloom: Mauve flowers, ¾” wide, suffused with purple in spring

Size: 1-4” H x 12” W

Light: Part shade, but tolerates full sun in northern part of its range if moisture is sufficient

Soil: Fertile, moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 3-8

Care: Shear back after first flowering to encourage rebloom in fall

Pests and Diseases: May be attacked by slugs

Propagation: Seed, division

Companion plants: Hosta, barrenwort (Epimedium) bleeding heart, lungwort (Pulmonaria).

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