They’re surprisingly popular around, but few people even know their exact names. Most people can’t even identify them in the wild.
But what’s certain is that the violas flower is an exquisite addition to any garden. As soon as the blossoms appear and the colors take over, your garden will never be the same.
Now, how can you make that possible?
First, let’s start by identifying them, learn a bit more about them, and what common varieties you’re likely to find.
Then, let’s show you EVERYTHING you need to know to grow violas in your own garden.
Want to learn it all? Then come down!
What are Violas Exactly?
The Violaceae are a type of perennial where many other flowers also belong – like pansies and violets. In fact, there are over 500 different types of violas to consider.
With that many, how do you tell them apart? Well, there are many ways.
One would be their color. Some violas are purple, others are white, and some of them may even boast blueish tones. And there are still many more colors to consider.
Shapes and sizes also change. Some may be as large as 3 inches, while others are tiny enough to look like colored leaves.
Regardless of how the flowers look, violas are fast-growing and great spreaders. They can grow lushly on pots and cover entire gardens without problems. And what’s even better, they will bloom either way beautifully, as long as conditions make that possible.
Types of Violas Flower to Consider
While most of them require cold climates and similar environments to flourish, they all look and grow differently. Here’s a heads-up on what you may get from different types of violas:
1. Garden Pansy (Viola x wittrockiana)
Likely one of the most popular violas and easily one of the most colorful, this variety makes for an excellent garden addition regardless of where it is.
What sets it apart is the ability to grow to over 8 inches tall and still deliver gigantic (for violas) 3-inch flowers. These flowers can have up to three colors at once, so you can enjoy them to the max (and the petal patterns and undoubtedly gorgeous as well).
2. Horned Violet (Viola cornuta)
Many people call it the Tufted Violet, as it is very similar to a pansy, but the flower tends to be a lot smaller. At about one and a half inches in size, this multi-colored flower is impossible to dismiss.
You can expect the foliage to grow up to 10 inches tall and cover entire gardens with ease. The flower, however, grows from individual stems that can reach even higher, highlighting the eye-catching colors of the blossoms.
3. Johnny-Jump-Up (Viola tricolor)
Also known as Hybrid Pansies, the Viola tricolor is among the most colorful violas you’ll find. The flower can reach over 10 inches with its stems. The plant is also super-tiny in comparison to its cousins, typically growing between 5 and 8 inches.
This one doesn’t spread as much as other types of violas, so it’s often used for edging or patching small portions of a garden.
4. Sweet Violet (Viola odorata)
It’s one of the most popular violas, also known as the Common Viola. The flower is difficult to confuse, as it grows tiny at about 2 inches max and takes a purplish-to-bluish color. You may also notice a small white section in the center.
The most exciting part is the aroma it produces, especially as it starts to spread across the garden. The foliage doesn’t usually grow taller than 8-10 inches.
5. Wild Blue Violet (Viola sororia)
Don’t let the name confuse you. The Viola sororia can be blue, purple, or even reddish. It typically achieves super-quick growth, reaching heights of up to 12 inches in some cases.
Many people consider it an invasive weed as it spreads exceptionally quickly as well. It still tends to produce that undoubtedly attractive set of flowers. These flowers, by the way, are also aromatic and easily among the most beautiful from any type of weed.
What Does the Violas Flower Need to Grow?
Regardless of the variety you pick, they all require almost the same things: healthy soil, sufficient humidity, and consistent sunlight.
Here’s a breakdown of everything you need to ensure:
1. Space and Potting
Violas are often considered weeds, so you can expect them to grow pretty much anywhere. Some grow in places as complex as crevices between rocks, rocky walls, and even gravel. Obviously, they thrive in typical gardens and make for excellent pot flowers (including hanging baskets).
They don’t need much space but may spread heavily across extensive gardens and take over entire planting areas. Others trail and climb, while some prefer growing in tiny bush-like shapes or in edging patterns.
We recommend planting them in gardens or pots no smaller than 6 inches in diameter for the best experience.
2. Soil and Fertilizer
You will notice these plants are often found in slightly humid places, so their soil needs to be precisely that. But because they can grow in somewhat difficult areas, straight soil is not always necessary.
As a general rule, use well-amended soil that makes it easy to suck away nutrients. But you may also use peat moss or sandy soils without problems.
Don’t hesitate to fertilizer the place, though. A slow-release fertilizer will work perfectly, especially as it grows and just before the plant starts to bloom.
3. Water and Humidity
Humid-loving plants like violas require consistent watering. That doesn’t mean they will die in drought seasons, but they will generally need humid environments to thrive.
As long as you can water them down at least thrice a week, the viola won’t mind and will likely thrive. Water every day if you want the largest and most colorful flowers.
4. Sunlight and Aeration
Like most weeds out there, violas LOVE sunlight. You need to keep them under the bright sun for no less than 5 hours a day if you want them to thrive. Ensuring upwards of 8 hours or more will make them the best violas out there.
Having said that, they aren’t succulents or cacti that can withstand scorching sun rays. You will be better off keeping under shade when the harshest summer sunlight hits.
As for aeration, they thrive with little wind. But keeping them outdoors to receive more air is always better than enclosing them in windless environments.
5. Temperature and Environment
A typical viola can resist environments as cold as 10 degrees and as hot as 80 degrees Fahrenheit. But for the best experience, you will need to keep them between 40 and 70 degrees, as it is sufficiently cool to not cause damage but without being frozen.
Overall, they’re mostly a cool-environment plant. Keeping them under temperatures higher than 80 degrees is not a great idea.
You can luckily grow them indoors or outdoors as long as temperatures stay within a decent range. Still, outdoors is almost always better (for the air and sunlight).
How to Grow Violas Flower?
They require little to no effort to grow. But that doesn’t mean they grow by themselves. You need to ensure the process goes neatly if you want the best violas flowers.
Here’s a set of steps to follow for that:
- Decide Type of Growth
When we say a type of growth, we mean: from seed or from a seedling.
You need to consider whether you want to grow them from the very start, which requires a bit more time and effort, or you prefer planting them as seedlings – which typically requires less.
Seeds are slightly more difficult because you still don’t know which ones will sprout and which won’t. Luckily, it’s not hard either. Violas typically self-seed, so it shouldn’t be much of an effort either.
As for seedlings, you only need to consider whether you’re transplanting later or using the same pot where they come from. Typically, you’ll want to keep them in the same pot until they’ve overgrown it – which is time to transplant them into a bigger container or garden.
So, what are you going for? Be aware that seeds are often a lot cheaper and much more rewarding to see growing.
TO CONSIDER: Violas seeds sprout pretty quickly compared to other plants, so you can rest assured it won’t be as problematic as you think.
- Find the Perfect Spot
Otherwise, make sure it is preferably flat garden soil. While the plant usually crawls and climbs if necessary, it will be better off in a level area.
Also, don’t forget about fertility. If the soil isn’t rich enough, the plant may struggle regardless of how gritty it is.
WORTH NOTING: If you see other weeds, grass, or flower plants growing in the area, that’s probably good enough soil for the violas.
- Amend the Area
Well, it doesn’t matter. You can always amend the place to make it as nutritious as necessary for the violas to thrive.
For this, we recommend mixing the soil with organic matter like mushroom compost or humus soil. This will deliver a sufficiently rich environment for any plant to thrive, much more your violas.
After that, consider adding a bit of slow-release fertilizer. This should increase the quality of the soil even further.
IMPORTANT FACT: Violas don’t need much fertilizer or organic matter to thrive. In fact, adding too much may actually harm them. If the soil is rich enough, it’s worth not being amended in the first place.
- Step 4. Plant the Seeds/Seedlings
With the soil already amended and the seeds/seedlings ready to be planted – it’s time to get into the most challenging part.
Why hard? Because you need to make sure not to damage the roots of the seedling as you transplant. And for seeds, you need to make sure the seeds are appropriately spread (at a distance).
For seedlings, get it out of the pot gently. Try not to treat the root too harshly not to break it or damage it in the slightest. Then place in the desired area with care. We recommend opening a 3-inch-deep hole and planting there.
And for seeds, you’ll need to place the seeds no closer than 8 inches apart. This happens because seeds take over areas pretty fast, so they may eventually fight for nutrients as they grow.
THINK ABOUT THIS: It’s essential to clean the soil before planting. Remove weeds or grass that may harm the seedling or seeds.
- Keep in the Right Place
Once the seeds are planted, you need to let them grow UNDER SHADE. This will help them germinate a lot faster.
For seedlings, it’s the opposite – keep them UNDER THE SUN instead. This will help the small violas grow larger and quicker.
Either way, make sure temperatures aren’t lower than 60 degrees Fahrenheit and no higher than 75 degrees if you want them to thrive either way.
BY THE WAY: You can keep the viola’s seedlings under artificial lights as well if necessary. They should be as bright as possible for the plants to thrive.
- Help the Violas Thrive
Now it’s just a matter of time until the violas grow and bloom. It shouldn’t take more than a couple of weeks for you to see the first few leaves germinating or the seedling duplicating its size.
Here, you should ensure temperatures between 50- and 65-degrees Fahrenheit. This should be enough to avoid hot or cold damage.
And lastly, remember to keep the soil moist as the plant grows from seed to seedling and adult.
DON’T FORGET: You can always add fertilizer to the soil as the plant grows. But don’t overdo it if you want to avoid trouble.
- Harden the Seedlings
Something else you must ensure is moist soil. While the plants won’t struggle with drought as adults, they may struggle while growing (and reduce their size). You’ll want to ensure a bit of humidity in the soil to harden them.
And finally, you can slowly forget about them after 3-4 weeks of full-blown growth. They will eventually become adults and require less care.
CONSIDER THIS: It’s a matter of time until the plant starts to bloom in the summer or fall. Once they do, you can forget about the violas (apart from watering).
How to Take Care of Violas Flower ?
What should you do to keep violas growing non-stop and deliver the most beautiful flowers? Here’s a set of tips to consider:
Don’t let their soil stay dry for more than 2-3 days. While they can withstand up to a week without water, it’s better not to test them.
You can either use a slow-release fertilizer every 2 or 3 months or fertilizer once a month with a quick-release one. This is primarily necessary before they bloom, so you make them as big and lush as possible for the flowers to be much better.
Prune Dead Sections
Whether flowers or branches seem dead, cut them off. These portions tend to consume nutrients from the plant, keeping the rest inactive and not producing as lovely blooms as you may want.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Ans. They may flower from early summer up to early fall. But this may depend on the place and temperatures. Some of them may bloom from late spring up to early winter.
Ans. Yes. They may flower in winter, but this only happens if the fall and summer seasons are short.
Ans. They can bloom for up to 6 months straight. Naturally, they only stay for about 3 months.
Ans. Yes, the plant will typically flower at least once every year. This will happen mostly if you don’t let them die in winter or summer.
Yes. Many people harvest and eat violas. You can add them to salads or desserts and enjoy them as part of your already yummy meals.
Grow Your Own Violas at Home Now!
You don’t need to be an expert gardener to grow viola’s flowers at home. This guide is clear about that!
But you still need to follow the right advice, or else your violas won’t be the best they can be.
So, what are you doing then?
Follow every one of our recommendations above, and you’ll grow the best violas flowers out there.
What are you waiting for then? Your colorful and great-smelling violas garden is waiting!