Viola pedata - Faces

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Gallery of Viola pedata "faces", close-ups of variably shaped flowers to illustrate the fascinating diversity of our native Bird's Foot Violet.  All photos by Marsha Russell, Littleton, Massachusetts.



Viola pedata-1.jpg (6590 bytes) Viola pedata-2.jpg (7078 bytes) Viola pedata-3.jpg (6425 bytes)
Viola pedata-4.jpg (5694 bytes) Viola pedata-11.jpg (8824 bytes) Viola pedata-8.jpg (5491 bytes)
Viola pedata-17.jpg (6657 bytes) Viola pedata-9.jpg (7389 bytes) Viola pedata-12.jpg (5884 bytes)

Visiting a large, heavily populated colony of Viola pedata here in Massachusetts is much like visiting a major city, especially one which also acts as a port of entry to the country. All the elements of large city life are there; noise, exhaust fumes, litter, soil and air pollution. The plants thrive in a mixture of sand, dust, and road salt in full, hot baking sun. Any grass is that of the weed category, cut often enough to remove most of the seed pods produced by the violets.

Standing, one can view small groups within the whole that are distinctive and unlike their neighbors. The coloring of the small groups goes from white to a fairly dark purple. Faces in one group are long; in another they are perfectly round. Some have horns protruding between the upper two petals while most have horns which stay neatly behind the two petals. The groups vary in height and growth habit from tall and wide to very short and compact.

Little Italy here, Germantown over there, and there’s the Asian community, and Harlem so dark, and the Scandinavians so light and to the last member of the large colony, all co-exist and obviously share their genetic make up to form yet another small group with a little different shape or color. It’s not unlike the genetic story of humankind, though we have hardly learned to exist in harmony with other nearly as well.

Marsha Russell   February 2001

Viola pedata-6.jpg (7178 bytes) Viola pedata-7.jpg (6132 bytes) Viola pedata-10.jpg (5925 bytes)
Viola pedata-18.jpg (5449 bytes) Viola pedata-19.jpg (7096 bytes) Viola pedata-27.jpg (6336 bytes)
Viola pedata-21.jpg (5311 bytes) Viola pedata-22.jpg (6647 bytes) Viola pedata-28.jpg (7183 bytes)
Viola pedata-26.jpg (6425 bytes) Viola pedata-29.jpg (6610 bytes) Viola pedata-25.jpg (6274 bytes)



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Images and textual content copyright 2000 Mark McDonough

This page was last updated on 02/17/01