by Stephen Mifsud
   22 Jun 2024      ()
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Viola odorata   (Sweet Violet)

Viola odorata  (VIOLACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands after year 2000.

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Profile Date Nov-2007 (taxon update: none)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (2022). Viola odorata - datasheet created on Nov-2007. Retrieved from on 22-Jun-2024

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Viola odorataL.
Published in Sp. Pl. : 934 (1753)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Viola stolonifera J.J.Rodr.
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life] []

Plant Family :

Violaceae Batsch. (The Violet Family)
1 species from the Violaceae family is recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Sweet Violet, English Violet, Garden Violet

Maltese name(s) :


Status for Malta :

Doubtful origin. It is not yet established if this species is native or not.

Frequency :

Very Common     Common    Frequent     Scarce     Rare    Very rare     Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: HEMICRYPTOPHYTE ( prostate plants with flowers close to the ground )
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection :

Not legally protected till the last update of this website (2/Mar/2022)

Red List (1989) :

Threatened status for the Maltese Islands and has been listed in the Red Data Book (1st ed.)

Flowering Time :

February – April

Colour of Flowers:



Not particularly toxic

Name Derivation :

odorata: Fragrant, having a pleasant scent. (Latin origin )

Planting in rural areas :

Can be planted in rural areas according to ERA Guidelines

Description, Habitat and Distribution
Habitat in Europe: Data will be available in the next update of this website.
Preferred habitat in Malta: Shallow valley beds
Botanical Description: Perennial 5-15 cm, with leaf-rosette and long, procumbent, rooting stolons. Leaves orbicular-reniform, deeply cordate, widest at about the middle; petiole long. Stipules ovate, glabrous or sparsely ciliate, shortly glandular-fimbriate. Bracts at or above middle of peduncle. Flowers c. 1.5 cm, dark violet or white, fragrant. Sepals ovate, obtuse. Spur c. 6 mm, exceeding calycine appendages. Stigmatic beak vertical, its length equalling diameter of style. Capsule pubescent.
Chromosome number: 2n=20
Distributional range: Europe, except the extreme north and parts of the Mediterranean region.

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):
Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):
All except the Balaeric Islands, Faroe Islands, Finland, Iceland, Russia and former USSR, Svalbard archipelago, Doubtful in Turkey (European part)
Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(from Euro+Med Checklist, 2019)
  Country codes  
? Ab(A N) AE(G) Ag Al Ar Au dAu(A L) Be(B L) BH ?Bl(N) Br Bu By Ca(C G P T) Cg Co Cr Ct Cy Ga(F) Ge Gg(A D G) Gr Hb(E N) He Ho Hs Hu Ir It Jo Le Lu Ma Md(M) Mk Mo Po Rf(C CS E S) Rm Sa Si(M S) ?Sk Sl Sr Tn Tu(A E) Uk(K U) [nAz(F G J L M P S T) Bl(I M) nCs nDa Es nFe Hs(A S) La Lt nNo dPo Rf(K NW) cSi(S) Sk nSu]

Links & Further literature (0 papers)

Google Web

Google Images

Google Scholar

Research Gate




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



World Flora Online

Plants of the World Online

Vienna Virt. Herb.

RBGE Herbarium

KEW Herbarium




Kindly Email if there are papers and publications about local studies or information about this species to be included in the list above.

Species Images (13 images)
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-0.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-1.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-2.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-3.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-4.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-5.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-6.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-7.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-8.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-9.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-10.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-11.
   Viola odorata   -   Image Code: VIOOD-12.

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