Here at the farm, Violets are everywhere—purple and white (mostly white...but there are some purple in the medicinal herb garden...for now). Actually, it's all "medicinal:" all that's growing around us...and will continue to grow until the leaves fall again in September and October. Some folklore will tell that violets mean "fortune is coming your way." I suppose I am pretty fortunate on this property.

The leaves are heart-shaped, slightly downy, and grow on stalks that rise alternately from a creeping rhizome (or underground stem). The flowers are generally deep purple, but lilac, pale rose-coloured or white variations are also frequent. The flowers are full of honey and are constructed for bee visitors, but bloom before it is really bee time, so that it is rare that a Violet flower is found setting seed.

What is curious about the violet is that it produces flowers both in the spring and in autumn, but the flowers are different. In spring they are fully formed, as described, and sweet-scented, but they are mostly barren and produce no seed, while in autumn, they are very small and insignificant, hidden away amongst the leaves, with no petals and no scent, and produce abundance of seed. 

In my world, violet is a gentle while potent remedy. It is classified as an alterative (or "blood purifier"), which means it helps the body restore optimal functioning by aiding metabolic processes, especially the elimination of waste products. Violet stimulates the lymphatic glands, helping the body get rid of bacteria and other toxins. It is especially useful for swollen glands. Over time, violet can help clear stubborn problems like eczema, psoriasis, and acne. Taking Violet after a long winter is a wonderful way to get our bodies ready for a healthy and energetic spring. It is a favorite for cancer healing.