Viola riviniana

  1. Wildlife
  2. Wildflowers
  3. Dog-violet


If you see a violet in the wild, it is most likely to be the Common Dog-violet; this common and widespread plant lives happily in many different habitats including woodland, grassland, heaths, hedgerows and old pasture. It flowers from April to June but its flowers are not scented, unlike those of its cousin, the Sweet Violet. The latter was used in Ancient Greece as a perfume and Medieval Britain as a deodorant.

How to identify

The purple flowers of the Common Dog-violet resemble those of pansies. It has heart-shaped leaves and, unlike some other types of violet, has no scent.

Where to find it

Very common, grows almost everywhere in the UK.


When to find it

  • April
  • May
  • June

How can people help

The Wildlife Trusts manage many nature reserves for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife, including many different species of plants. But these precious sites are under threat from development, intensive agricultural practices and climate change. You can help by supporting your local Trust and becoming a member; you'll find out about exciting wildlife happenings, events on your doorstep and volunteering opportunities, and be helping local wildlife along the way.

Species information

Common name
Latin name
Viola riviniana
Height: up to 12cm
Conservation status