Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Striped Cream Violet - Viola striata   Aiton
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Section 6 » Order Violales » Family Violaceae
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DistributionEssentially throughout the mountains and Piedmont, and extending into the western Coastal Plain only along several large brownwater river floodplains (Roanoke and Cape Fear).

This is a widespread Eastern species, ranging from eastern Canada south to central SC, central AL, and eastern OK.
AbundanceFairly common, at least locally, in the mountains and in the north-central and northeastern Piedmont. Rare to uncommon in the southern Piedmont, and at the western edge of the Coastal Plain.
HabitatThis is a species of rich soil (often high pH), usually in brownwater floodplain forests -- bottomlands and natural levees. It can be somewhat weedy and occur in openings and clearing in floodplains. It does not usually occur in uplands, other than in Rich Cove Forests or lower portions of very rich forested slopes, such as in Basic Mesic Forests.
PhenologyBlooms from March to June, and fruits shortly after flowering.
IdentificationThis is the only native violet with cream to very pale yellow flowers, though some populations can be whitish; and as it is a caulescent species, with leaves along the flowering stem, it can hardly be confused, except with the montane and tall V. canadensis, which has white flowers with a yellow center and a purplish tint on the backs of the petals. This species is erect to somewhat sprawling, with standard violet leaves (heart-shaped), mostly from the stems. The flowers are mostly cream-colored but can be white to whitish. Most conspicuous are the quite large, leafy stipules at the bases of each leaf, unlike any other violet. This violet can be somewhat local, but where found can occur in large stands, even spreading into disturbed soil, though usually where rich.
Taxonomic CommentsNone

General note on Viola: In 2009-10 B.A. Sorrie (website map editor) went through the whole collection at NCU, annotating all specimens against those verified by experts in the genus. The range maps in RAB (1968) have been changed accordingly. More recently, H. Ballard and students are in the process of revising all Southeastern Viola, and they will recognize more species than are listed on this website, which follows Weakley (2018).
Other Common Name(s)Cream Violet, Pale Violet, Striped White Violet
State RankS4 [S4S5]
Global RankG5
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