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Loughmiller, Campbell and Lynn
Oxalis violacea L.
Violet woodsorrel, Violet wood-sorrel
USDA Symbol: oxvi
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
This is an erect, delicate plant up to 16 inches tall. The long-stemmed leaves grow from the base and at first are longer than the flowering stem. They are divided into 3 leaflets, gray-green to bluish-gray above and green to reddish-purple below, but similar in structure to those of O. dillenii. Like those of all wood sorrels the leaves fold downward, together, at night and in cloudy weather. There are 4–19 flowers at the end of each stem, lavender to pinkish-purple, the eye of the flower usually a deeper purple. The wide-spreading petal-like lobes are 1/2–3/4 inch long. There are 5 petals and 10 stamens.
This is a very common woodland and moist prairie species, which is cultivated occasionally in the North. It spreads rapidly by runners from its bulbs, and often flowers again in autumn after the leaves have died.
Oxalis is from the Greek word meaning sour.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Violet
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun
AL , AR , AZ , CO , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , ND , NE , NJ , NM , NY , OH , OK , OR , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , VA , VT , WI , WV , WY Native Distribution:
Massachusetts and New York; south to Florida; west to Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, and beyond our range. Native Habitat:
Usually sandy open woods, banks, rocky ground, prairies. USDA Native Status: L48(N), PR(I)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Loam
From the National Suppliers Directory
According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:
Toadshade Wildflower Farm
- Frenchtown, NJ
Recommended Species Lists
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Record Modified: 2008-06-25
Research By: TWC Staff