There are some 20 species in the Viola genus in Québec. These small plants (5 to 20 cm tall) have characteristic, usually heart-shaped, long-stalked, toothed leaves. Their 5-petalled flowers are also characteristic. They are relatively small, about 2 cm in diameter. They vary in colour, depending on the species, from white to yellow, blue or violet. Violets may be divided into two groups: those that do not have a stem (the leaves rise directly from the soil) and those that do have a stem (the leaves are borne on the stem). Illustrated species: northern blue violet (Viola septentrionalis). N.B. It is very difficult, if not impossible, to identify violets when they are not in flower.