Stems: glabrous, slender, from a short fleshy horizontal rhizome. Leaves: radical ones on long petioles, the upper short-petioled, reniform-cordate, crenately toothed. Flowers: bright yellow.
This is a small plant which blooms close to he ground, and is found chiefly at high altitudes.
"When beechen buds begin to swell,
And woods the bluebird's warble know, The yellow violet's modest bell
Peeps from the last year's leaves below."
Its bright golden flowers are finely pencilled in the centre with black lines, and grow on short slender stalks amid a mass of small roundish leaves.
Viola orbiculata, or Round-leaved Yellow Violet, has a thick rootstock with a few fibrous rootlets, mostly rounded, heart-shaped, crenulate basal leaves, slightly hairy on the upper surface; and yellow petals, the lower one being purple-veined. The spurs are short and saccate.
Viola scmpcrvirens, or Trailing Yellow Violet, has weak, decumbent stems, and spreads by means of long, slender rootstocks. The leaves are mostly basal, and are rounded, cordate at the base and finely round-toothed at the edges. The yellow flowers grow on long stalks, and their petals are sparingly veined with brown near the base, the spur being short and like a sac. This species grows chiefly in burnt woods.