Botanical Name

Viola sororia

Year Adopted

1968

Peak Bloom

April to June

History

The Violet was selected by school children in 1897, but was not officially adopted as the state flower until 1968.

Fun Fact

The common meadow violet is the most common one of the 400 species of violets.

Rhode Island state flower - The Common Blue Violet

Rhode Island may have been one of the last states to officially name its state flower, but it was the first of four states to choose the Common Blue Violet as its state flower. In fact, in 1987, the state’s school children chose the Common Blue Violet over 10 other candidates.

Though it is seldom found in the southern part of the state, the Rhode Island state flower grows commonly from Warwick to Cranston and Providence to the state’s northern border. Violets are easy growing plants and can be found in equal numbers in gardens and in the wild. Outside of cities, these flowers are often found in meadows, woods and preserves.

From April to June, the Rhode Island state flower blossoms with small multi-petaled flowers. Its blooms are snowy white or a rich, blue-purple color and grow on separate stems from their broad, heart-shaped leaves. After these showy flowers are done blooming, the Common Blue Violet produces a second set of blossoms. These small, closed flowers look like small buds and produce most of the Violet’s seeds.

The Common Blue Violet is not only found in the garden, but it is also used in the kitchen. Violet petals are used to decorate cakes and as well as to flavor jellies and candies. The plant also provides a natural source of vitamins A and C.

Growing Information

Soil

Well-drained

Sun

Full Sun/Partial Shade

Zones

3 - 9