Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Strapleaf Violet - Viola vittata   Greene
Members of Violaceae:
Members of Viola with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Family Violaceae
DistributionPreviously included within V. lanceolata as a variety, but Weakley (2020) has elevated this taxon to full species status with reasons for justification. Limited to the Coastal Plain, and known north only to Nash County, despite records from VA. To be looked for in the northern half of the province.

Occurs from southeastern VA south to southern FL and west to eastern TX.
AbundanceUncommon to locally fairly common in the southern Sandhills and inner Coastal Plain, but rare to uncommon farther eastward to Lenoir and New Hanover counties. Very rare north to Nash County.
HabitatThis species is restricted to ponded or other non-flowing waters -- pools, clay-based Carolina bays, depression ponds, and other mostly very small bodies of water. Usually not in ditches, margins of impoundment ponds, stream margins, and other damp ground of often moving water where the very similar V. lanceolata grows.
PhenologyFlowers for much of the year, but fruits mainly in summer; V. lanceolata fruits in spring.
IdentificationThis white-flowered species is very similar to V. lanceolata, but it has even narrower leaves -- strap-like to almost grass-like; at flowering time usually with a blade about 4 inches long but just 4-12 mm (less than 1/2-inch, often 1/3-inch) wide. The blade is thus 8-15 times as long as wide; those of V. lanceolata average 3-6 times as long as wide. The blade gradually tapers to the petiole, as opposed to more obviously tapering to the petiole in V. lanceolata. Weakley (2020) gives several other character differences between the two.
Taxonomic CommentsSee above. Some older references, including Gleason (1952), list these two as good species, but most recent ones do not.

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 additional species; this work has now been published (see above). We will follow updated editions of Weakley in recognizing them.
Other Common Name(s)Bog White Violet
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BA SorrieRacetrack Pond, E of NC 177; abundant 18 May 2018. RichmondPhoto_natural
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