Sunday, March 23, 2008

Viola adunca Hookedspur/ Western Dog Violet- new plant ally

Violets are another early spring bloom. I found the blue Hookedspur violet was showing off it's beautiful blooms. The above picture is another wild violet, I am not sure of the variety. I have heard the colors can vary. This will be a new plant to me as a medicinal. My mom brought me some over to the house that were volunteers in my Aunts yard to save them from getting sprayed, I guess they were "taking over". She knew I would like them, but she was not sure what type of plant they were. So now they have a home in my yard, and I am happy to have them! A few days later on our outing we spotted some more out in the wild, and I have been noticing them more along the road side near my home. Although this was not on my list as one of my plants to get to know this year, it seems this pretty blue violet found me!
While doing some quick research online I found that wild violets have a long history of Native American uses. In reading this quick reference I found the roots and leaves were chewed during labor, hmmm that is interesting since I am in my 6th month of pregnancy ( although I have also read the rhizomes and seeds are poisonous). There are also some external applications listed for sore & swollen joints. The leaves and flowers are edible and I am sure will make a pretty addition to salad. This will be an interesting plant to get to know.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for the link to the page about the ethnobotanical uses of the violet in America.
I wrote an article about Violets a few years ago (but it is in Dutch:, and I never heard about their seeds and rhizomes being poisonous.
But violets and pansies contain violine, a substance that can make you nauseus and vomiting, and for that reason, in the past fresh violets were never used for children (the substance disappears when drying the plant).
Violets also contain small amount of salicylic acid, reason not to give them to small children when they have fever.

Angie Goodloe LMT, Herbalist said...

Thank you, I am just learning about this plant. I know you can't believe everything you read & not all resources may be correct, I will have to research this more, and of course learn from the plant:) Hopefully I can find a way to translate your article, I would really like to read it. Thanks for visiting!

Amber said...

Oh, I adore violet! She's one of my favorites - I eat the first flower I see every spring, and nibble on the leaves while I poke around to see what else is waking up. Violets always give me hope...

I have used violet decoction on a dry cough that wouldn't move - it helped moisten it so that I could dislodge the mucus.

I have also used violet leaves and chickweed sprigs (both bruised) to shrink a boil on delicate girly bits - with little to no pain!

I added your feed, by the way. Keep up the good work!

Angie Goodloe LMT, Herbalist said...

Thank you amber for the great comments and adding my blog to your feed. Thanks for visiting!

Anonymous said...

:) thank you! I was burning up google images trying to find out what kind of violet grows wild here and there it is! I checked your blog right after I realized it was not going to be easy.

barefoot lindy