Friday, October 10, 2014

Hesperis matronalis ( Dame's Violet )
A short-lived perennial, reaching up to 4 feet, native to open forest mountains from central Europe to Siberia; south to northern Turkey to central Asia. It is locally naturalized in northeastern North America as far north as Cape Croker and Haliburton, Ontario.
The toothed, ovate leaves, up to 8 inches in length, are deep green. The young leaves, stem tips and tender seedpods can be eaten as greens after being lightly boiled.
The fragrant pink ( rarely white or bright purple ) flowers, up to 1 inch wide, are borne during early summer.
Hardy zones 2 to 8 in partial shade on moist soil. Extremely cold hardy, it is known to thrive as far north as Fairbanks, Alaska, Whitehorse, Yukon and Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.

* photos taken on May 3 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 2014 in Columbia, MD