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Title: Violaceae  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Viola lanceolata, Melicytus ramiflorus, Viola macloskeyi, Viola persicifolia, List of flora of the Sonoran Desert Region by common name
Collection: Malpighiales Families, Violaceae
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Viola banksii
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Violaceae

Violaceae (including Alsodeiaceae J.G.Agardh, Leoniaceae DC. and Retrosepalaceae Dulac) is a family of flowering plants consisting of about 800 species in 25[1] genera. It takes its name from the genus Viola, the violets and pansies.

Older classifications such as the Cronquist system placed Violaceae in an order named after it, the Violales. However, newer classifications such as that of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group locate it in the Malpighiales.


  • Description 1
  • Taxonomy 2
    • Subfamily Fusispermoideae 2.1
    • Subfamily Leonioideae 2.2
    • Subfamily Violoideae 2.3
      • Tribe Rinoreeae 2.3.1
        • Subtribe Hymenantherinae
        • Subtribe Isodendriinae
        • Subtribe Paypayrolinae
        • Subtribe Rinoreinae
      • Tribe Violeae 2.3.2
  • References 3
  • External links 4


Though the best-known genus, Viola, is herbaceous, most species are shrubs or small trees. The simple leaves are alternate or opposite, often with leafy stipules or the stipules are reduced in size. Some species have palmate shaped leaves or deeply dissected leaves. Many species are acaulescent. Inflorescence with solitary flowers or paniculate like, some species have cleistogamous flowers produced after or before the production of typically petaled flowers. Flowers are bisexual or unisexual (e.g. Melicytus), typically zygomorphic or actinomorphic with a calyx of five sepals that are persistent after flowering. Corolla with 5 mostly unequal petals, the anterior petal larger and often spurred. Plants with five stamens with the abaxial stamen often spurred at the base. The gynoecium is a compound pistil of three united carpels with one locule. Styles simple, ovary superior, ovules many. The fruits are capsules splitting by way of three seams. Seeds with endosperm.


three subfamilies are recognized: Violoideae, Leonioideae and Fusispermoideae.

Subfamily Fusispermoideae

Subfamily Leonioideae

Subfamily Violoideae

Tribe Rinoreeae

Subtribe Hymenantherinae
Subtribe Isodendriinae
Subtribe Paypayrolinae
Subtribe Rinoreinae

Tribe Violeae


  1. ^ Violaceae. The Plant List.

External links

  • Violaceae in L. Watson and M.J. Dallwitz (1992 onwards). The families of flowering plants: descriptions, illustrations, identification, information retrieval.
  • GRIN Database for the Violaceae
  • Chilean Violaceae, by Chileflora
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