Viola pubescens  (V. pensylvanica) yellow forest violet Violaceae VIPU; Bx, br, pb, wv (Yost et al. 1991); NY, iw; R, bv (E. Danielsen 2016);


Viola pubescens.Zihao Wang.Corson's Brook.S.I. NYC.4/2016.

Viola pubescens. Zihao Wang. Corson’s Brook.S.I. NYC.4/2016.

Viola pubescens is a low perennial herb, to 45 cm, from a short, thick pale rhizome, roots associated with VA mycorrhizas (Brundrett and Kendrick 1988); plants softly hairy to mostly hairless; stem with 1-2 sheathing bracts above base. 

Leaves alternate, few basal leaves, 2-4 leaves near top of stem, broadly heart- or egg-shaped, margin toothed, tip pointed, base lobed or blunt, one to several basal leaves slightly wider than long, kidney to heart-shaped, to 10 cm usually slightly wider than long, petioles long, stipules broadly egg-shaped. 

Flowers yellow with purple veins near base, bilaterally symmetric, 5 parted, lateral petals bearded, slightly irregular; blooms April-May; closed, self-fertile flowers July-Aug. (Hough 1983), producing many seeds. 

Viola pubescens.flower.Erik Danielsen.Boodroot Valley.S.I.NYC.5:2016

Viola pubescens.flower.Erik Danielsen.Boodroot Valley.S.I.NYC.5:2016 (Accessed 5/2016).

Fruit a white-wooly capsule, to 1.2 cm long, several seeded. Seeds with fatty appendage, dispersed explosive dehiscence, secondarily dispersed by ants attracted to appendage, eaten by birds, (Martin et al. 1951; Beattie and Culver 1981; Thompson 1981; Wein and Pickett 1989). 

Wetland status: FACU. 

Frequency in NYC: Infrequent. 

Origin: Native. 

Habitat: Undisturbed rich, open woods; quite shade tolerant (Brundrett and Kendrick 1988). Found in flood plain forest, soil pH 6.8 (Gargiullo unpublished data). 

Notes: Foliage eaten by rabbits and small mammals (Martin et al. 1951).