Violet (Sweet)

Other names: Blue Violet, Ordinary violet, Common blue violet, Sweet violet, Garden violet 

Scientific name: Viola odorata

Viola arvensis – field pansy 

Common names: Viola, Violetta, Pansies, heartsease, Banah Shah, Banafshah, English Violet, Garden Violet, Kokulu Menekse, Maarts Viooltje, Nioi-Sumire, Purple Violet, Sweet Violet, Sweet Blue Violet and Violette Des Jardins

 Ayuverdic Names: periwinkle are Great periwinkle, Madagascar periwinkle and Red Periwinkle

Chinese names: Hu-chin-ts’ao

Bangladesh names:  Banopa, Baga Banusa

Arabic names:    البنفسج (al banafsaj)

Rain Forest names:

Family: Violaceae 

Approximate number of species known: 400-500

Common parts used: Leaf, flower, whole plant

Collection: over a period of 40 years

Annual/Perennial: Perennial

Height: 10cm

Actions:  alterative, anti-inflammatory, anti-neoplatic, antiseptic, alterative, emetic, expectorant, laxative, mucilaginous

Known Constituents:  Alkaloids, flavanoids, menthyl salicylate, saponins, glucoside: viola-quercitin

Constituents Explained: Violet has a nitrogenous constituents displaying a nitrogen compound found in the plant. Violet has recently proven to be Anti – HIV stating that this is a good herbal plant to take for protection and for those who are suffering from HIV or AIDS Virus.


The name derives from the Greek word ‘Ione.’  When Jupiter check story??? transformed Io out of jealousy??? he caused these flowers to grow on the earth as food for her.

The colour violet owes its name to the colour of these flowers.   Even thought the flowers are normally a violet, or deep purple colour, they are sometimes pink or white with different shades. Any species of Violet is commonly called a ‘Pansy’ or ‘heartease’. Grows in hot sunny conditions, as long as the soil doesn’t dry out too much.

The leaves are shaped like a heart.

The flowers have five petals, and five sepals.  The flowers contain honey, and are carriers for bees.  Butterflies also use the plant for food, and insects often lay eggs on the stalk.

It doesn’t replicate by seeds.

Violets grow best in clear air asthe hairs on the leaf tend to catch pollutants, which blocks the pores which the plant breathes from.  When grow in too much sunlight it becomes gullible to red spider???. It does, however, like full sunlight in Autumn.

Traditional Use:

The Native Americans used this herb for the urinary tract.  Externally they used it as a poultice for skin conditions.

Violet is traditionally thought of as being full of vitamins and minerals.  It is sometimes thought of as a ‘blood purifier.’

High in Vitamin A & C., it is thought of by most as a cough remedy and as an aid to eliminate mucous.  Sometimes used for skin conditions such as eczema. Its use through the urinary tract has seen it used for urinary tract  infections.   

It has been used as a ‘blood purifier’ and for ulcers.1  It has been used as a nervine and for colds and lung trouble.1  Sweet violet (Viola odorata) is known for its scent and is sometimes used in the perfume industry.

“Large doses of the root contain an alkaloid called violine which is emetic (causing vomiting)”

Clinical Studies:



  1. Latin name: Viola odorata
  2. Family: N.O. Violaceae
  3. Other names: Sweet-Scented Violet.

It is native to Europe and Asia, but has also been introduced to North America and Australasia. It is commonly known as Sweet Violet, English Violet, Common Violet, or Garden Violet. The herb is known as Banafsa, Banafsha or Banaksa in India, where it is commonly used as remedy to cure sore throat and tonsilitis. The sweet, unmistakable scent of this flower has proved popular throughout the generations, particularly in the late Victorian period, and has consequently been used in the production of many cosmetic fragrances and perfumes.

The familiar leaves are heart-shaped, slightly downy, especially beneath, on stalks rising alternately from a creeping rhizome or underground stem, the blades of the young leaves rolled up from each side into the middle on the face of the leaf into two tight coils. The flower-stalks arise from the axils of the leaves and bear single flowers, with a pair of scaly bracts placed a little above the middle of the stalk. 

The flowers are generally deep purple, giving their name to the colour that is called after them, but lilac, pale rose-coloured or white variations are also frequent, and all these tints may sometimes be discovered in different plants growing on the same bank.

Violet flowers possess slightly laxative properties. The best form of administration is the Syrup of Violets. Syrop Violae of the British Pharmacopoeia directs that it may be given as a laxative to infants in doses of 1/2 to 1 teaspoonful, or more, with an equal volume of oil of Almonds. 

Syrup of Violets is also employed as a laxative, and as a colouring agent and flavouring in other neutral or acid medicines. 

The older writers had great faith in Syrup of Violets: ague, epilepsy, inflammation of the eyes, sleeplessness, pleurisy, jaundice and quinsy are only a few of the ailments for which it was held potent. Gerard says: ‘It has power to ease inflammation, roughness of the throat and comforteth the heart, assuageth the pains of the head and causeth sleep.’

Herb Name: Violet 

Other Names:   sweet violet, garden violet 

Latin Name:  Viola Odorata 

Family:  Violaceae

Common parts Used: flower, leaves

Violet is a flowering plant. The flowers are heart shaped. This plant has a short life. The flower needs moist soil and light to grow. It belongs to the family violaceae. It is also known as sweet violet.

The flower buds of Violet are used raw as well as cooked. The leaves have a nice flavor and are used as salad.  The leaves are also used in soups. A tea can be made from the dried leaves of Violet. Flowers are also used for garnishing salads. The leaves extract are used to flavor ice creams, sweets and other bakery items.

Violet has been used from a long time for treatment of various diseases. It is considered as a remedy for cancer and whooping cough. It is also used in making aspirins. The plant is anti-inflammatory, diaphoretic and laxative. The violet is taken internally for the treatment of asthma, respiratory disorders, and bronchitis. In females it is used for the treatment of breast cancer. The flower is also used in aromatherapy.  The tea made from the plant is used for digestive disorders.