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The sweet Violets that grow wild are more than just a pretty flower; they are an herb, which is used for medicinal purposes, cooking and in perfume. The flowers of the Violet are either deep purple, lilac, pale rose or white. These flowers start blooming at the end of February and finishes blooming by the end of April.

The Violet reproduces itself by throwing out or runners, from the main plant each summer after flowering. These runners send out roots and become new plants, a process that causes the species to be independent of seed.

The chief use of the Violet is as a coloring agent in perfume, in cooking by the French and as the source of the Syrup of Violets. The entire plant can be used in either fresh or dried form.

Syrup of Violets was used as a mild laxative as well as treating epilepsy, eye inflammation, insomnia, pleurisy and jaundice.

In the 1300’s the flowers were crystallized used as a favorite conserve, Violet Sugar. This sugar was prepared from the flowers were also used for their expectorant qualities and sold by all apothecaries for consumption. Violets were also used as a remedy for bruises. In addition, the seeds were used as a diuretic and given to treat urinary problems. Modern homeopathic medicinal tincture is made from the entire fresh plant mixed with alcohol, and is used for rheumatism and cancer of the tongue.

The leaves of the violet can be used as a lubricant for the throat when they are dried and ground into a powder. Use this in olive oil and let stand for about six hours while sitting in a water bath. This will keep for a long time.

It has been recorded that during a case of a patient that was suffering from colon cancer that for nine weeks a nurseryman supplied this patient with fresh violet leaves. The patient was cured at the end of this period.

The next time you see violets, you may look differently at them.