[The Violet Family in the Columbia River Gorge of Oregon and Washington]

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet

Viola sheltonii

Synonym: Viola biternata

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)

The photos of cut-leaf violets seen on this page were taken at Catherine Creek, Columbia Gorge Scenic Area...............April 14, 2007. In the Columbia River Gorge, it is an early bloomer, often blooming in early to mid April.

Characteristics:

Another attractive violet, both for its cleft leaves and bright flowers, the cut-leaf violet is a perennial with smooth herbage and flowering stems arising from 5-15 cm tall. The leaf blades are sometimes a blue-green, often with purple on their lower surfaces. The leaf blades are deeply cleft into 3 main lobes, each of which is further cleft into linear segments. The leaf blade is generally 2-5 cm long.

The flowers are held above the leaves, with the forward faces of the 5 petals bright yellow, with the lower 3 petals showing purple penciling, and the backs of the upper two petals appearing brownish (See photo below.).


Habitat:

Cut-leaf violet may be found in the partial shade of oaks or ponderosa pines.


Range:

Cut-leaf violet may be found on the east side of the Cascades from near Cle Elum, WA south to the Columbia River Gorge, and south sporadically to Baja California.

In the Columbia River Gorge, it may be found wholly on the Washington side of the Columbia River where it may be found between the elevations of 400'-2400' from east of Stevenson, WA to the Klickitat River.


Close-up of a flower of Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata) - Close-up sideview of a flower of Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)


Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata) - Close-up of a leaf of Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)


Cut-leaf Violet: Viola sheltonii -- Cutl-leaf Violet: Viola sheltonii -- Cut-leaf Violet: Viola sheltonii

3 additional close-up views of the leaves and flowers of cut-leaf violet as seen amongst oak leaf litter at Catherine Creek, Columbia River Gorge.........April 9, 2009.

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata) - Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)

Cut-leaf violet as seen at left at Catherine Creek, Columbia River Gorge..........April 7, 2012. The photo at right shows cut-leaf violet as seen at Catherine Creek, Columbia River Gorge..........April 19, 2017.

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata) - Close-up frontal view of a flower of Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)

Close-ups of the flowers of cut-leaf violet as seen just beginning to bloom amongst oak leaf litter at the Klickitat Wildlife Area along the eastern rim of Canyon Creek.........April 6, 2013.

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata) - Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)

Cut-leaf violet as seen in oak leaf litter near the east rim of Canyon Creek, Klickitat Wildlife Area.........March 26, 2016.

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)

Cut-leaf violet as seen in oak leaf litter along the Weldon Wagon Road just east of Husum, WA......April 19, 2018.

Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata) - Cut-leaf Violet, Fan Violet, Shelton's Violet: Viola sheltonii (Synonym: Viola biternata)

Cutleaf violet as seen under the oaks at Catherine Creek (under the powerlines), Columbia River Gorge..........April 8, 2014.

Paul Slichter