I spotted this flower getting ready to mow the front yard Sunday afternoon. It is a re-seeded viola from last year’s flowers. I did not know they would do that, but apparently, they can re-seed themselves. They are sometimes called a Johnny Jump-up due to their propensity to appear in the lawn. The viola has 2 petals up and 3 down, which distinguishes it from a pansy with 4 up and 1 down. I carefully mowed around it. Whilst also carefully mowing around it, I discovered yet another surprise. Under the magnolia tree, there is a large patch of tiny blue flowers that have never appeared before.
These are Viola sororia, or common blue violet. They are also in two other sections of the yard. I mowed around this large patch near the magnolia, because (1) I like looking at them, and (2) the butterflies and bees are now out and they serve a useful purpose in the eco system.
These may be a mix of both viola and pansy, as several seem to have 3 petals down, and others only 1 petal down. They are both members of the viola family, so while all pansies are violas, all violas are not pansies.