This section is from the book "British Wild Flowers - In Their Natural Haunts Vol5-6", by A. R. Horwood. Also available from Amazon: A British Wild Flowers In Their Natural Haunts.
The habitat of this plant is heathy places, open commons, shady groves, hedgerows, seashores, etc. The habit is ascending". The plant is slender, branched, the flowering branches axillary, not arising from a flowerless rosette of leaves. The rootstock is slender, herbaceous or woody below. The stems are numerous, all producing flowers from the axils. The stipules are moderately long and narrow-pointed. The leaves are longer than broad, not long and narrow-pointed, with short, scattered hairs above. The flowers are scentless, blue, with a white eye. The sepals are lance-shaped, not accrescent in fruit. The petals are longer than broad. The spur is yellow. The anther-spurs are short, thick, sickle-like. The capsule is hairless, blunt, bluntly 3-sided. The plant is 2-4 in. high, flowering from April till June, and is a herbaceous perennial.
Viola lactea, Sm. (= V. lancifolia, Thore). - The habitat of this plant is dry heaths and downs. The plant has the loose rosette habit. The root-stock is woody, without soboles. The stems are ascending, brown, smooth, wiry. The lowest stipules are brown, small, lance-shaped, long-fringed, the middle half as long as the leaf-stalks, lance-shaped, long-fringed, the upper as long as or longer than the leaf-stalks, opposite, egg-shaped to lance-shaped, irregularly toothed, with teeth as long as the stipule is broad. The leaves are dark-green, smooth, coarsely-veined, sparingly hairy above, the lowest small, roundish, fading, on long stalks, the upper egg-shaped to lance-shaped, round or wedge-shaped below, slightly running down the stalk on the shorter stalk, not heart-shaped, the uppermost on still shorter stalks. The flowers are scentless, pale bluish-white, streaked, on long slender stalks, with bracts near the curvature of the stalk, entire, or with few teeth. The sepals are narrow, lance-shaped, awl-like. The petals are lance-shaped, pointed, 3-4 times longer than broad, the lowest folded inward. The spurs are greenish-yellow, blunt, twice or more longer than the calyx appendages. The anther-spurs are thick, curved, shorter than the anther, which has an acute apical scale. The capsule is smooth, nearly round, at first long-pointed on opening. The plant is 3-5 in. high, flowering in May and June, and is a herbaceous perennial.