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Plants Online - Viola

Plants for sale - Viola

42

PANSY

Family VIOLACEAE
Viola species
Perennial

A race of dainty perennials that inhabit the temperate regions of the Old and New Worlds. Viola cornuta, or the Horned Violet, has rounded foliage, toothed and of tufted habit; the flowers, two inches or less at the widest part, are violet.

Its forms show a great variation in colour from white to yellow and purple, and it is believed that this species was used extensively by raisers when evolving the brilliantly coloured bedding Tufted Pansies or Violas.

Viola gracilis reaches about nine inches, with violet flowers.
Viola pedata, the Bird’s Foot Violet, has flowers with two upper petals of deep violet and three lower ones of lilac; there is a white form.
Viola odorata is the favourite sweet-scented Violet with its many shades of colour and with double and single flowers.

A position in partial shade is preferable and in soil that has been enriched with a liberal quantity of leaf-mould or old manure, moisture with good drainage being essential to their well-being.

Propagate by means of cuttings or from seed.

The flowering season is in spring and summer.

Viola
Hardy Perennial.
Six to ten inches.
Flowers of various colours, March to November.

To distinguish the Viola from the Pansy seems to be, for many people, insuperably difficult.
The main difference lies in the growth and habit of the plants.
Pansy makes a straggling, long-jointed growth, and rarely renews itself at the heart of the plant; by October it is practically defunct and rarely survives to another year.
The Viola forms a tufty clump (whence the name “Tufted Pansy”), and though it spreads to some distance during the summer, it always tends to build up a compact cushion of new shoots in the centre of the root; under tolerable conditions it will last in good health for several seasons.
Though the Viola can never supplant the Pansy for size and substance of flowers, nor for richness of colour, it is recommended as a substitute for all gardeners who have not the time or inclination to give the little extra pains demanded by the Pansy.

The Viola will grow in almost any soil, except hot, dry sand; it will flower fairly well in full shade, and is at its best where it gets an hour or two of shadow in the heat of the day.
The beds where it is to grow must be well dug down to the subsoil; in the lower stratum mix plenty of half-rotten manure; with the upper layers incorporate leaf-mould, grit, wood-ashes and soot.
It is possible, but not desirable, to raise plants from seed; rooted cuttings should be obtained in November, and carefully planted a foot apart.
Before the spring, examine them to see whether any have been frost-lifted; if necessary, the planting may be done in March; but the plants start better if their roots get hold of the ground in the old year.
They will show flower in April, and will remain covered with bloom all the summer, if the soil is kept stirred, the old flowers are snipped off as soon as they fade, and plenty of water (with a mulch of light stuff e.g. leaf-mould to follow) inn dry weather. In October cut off all the straggling outer growth, leaving the compact central tuft of young shoots, and spread a good top-dressing of old manure and leaf-mould over the bed.
With this culture the plants ought to stand three years; they should then be forked up, and their places supplied with young stock.

It is quite easy to make Viola cuttings.
Early in September go over the plants and carefully pull out some of the young shoots springing from the base.
Some varieties yield these much more freely than others; and if a large number of cuttings are required, it is best to cut back the summer growth in August, and scatter some light compost about the clumps; this will encourage the growth of new shoots.
If the cuttings are carefully tweaked out, many will be found to have roots already formed; whether rooted or not, they should be dibbled in a patch of soil which has been made light and fine by the stirring of grit and sharp sand into the uppermost three or four inches.
They should be two or three inches apart; the cutting-ground ought to be under the shade of a wall, or be sheltered by a frame or a light propped up on boxes or flower-pots.
The cuttings must be shaded and kept moist if the weather should be hot and dry.
By October they will be rooted, and may be put out in their flowering-beds or kept in the cutting-bed till spring.

The following are dependable, out of a large variety of named sorts:
Archie Grant: Deep blue.
Ardwell Gem: Primrose.
Blue Cloud: White with blue border.
Bullion: Bright yellow.
Countess of Hopetoun: White.
Countess of Kintore: Purple, white margin.
Florizel: lilac pink.
Lark (or Skylark): Cream with mauve border.
Meteor: Rich yellow.
Councillor Waters: Crimson purple.
Princess Ida: Light rosy mauve.
Royal Sovereign: Deep yellow, rayless.
Mrs. M’Crae: White, rayless.
True Blue: Deep blue.

See also : Pansy


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