Veronica spicata


Sp. Pl. 1: 10. 1753.

Common names: Spiked speedwell véronique en épi
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 17. Treatment on page 308. Mentioned on page 305, 306, 309.

Perennials. Stems ascending, usually with 4–10 nodes, 5–45(–60) cm, proximally eglandular- or glandular-hairy, sometimes glabrous, distally eglandular- and, usually, glandular-hairy. Leaves: blade ovate-oblong to narrowly oblong-lanceolate, (30–)40–70(–80) × 5–20 mm, base long-cuneate, margins shallowly crenate to shallowly serrate to subentire, apex obtuse to rounded, surfaces densely glandular- or eglandular-hairy, rarely glabrate. Racemes 1(–7), terminal, sometimes with lateral ones, (50–)70–130(–170) mm, (50–)100–300-flowered, axis eglandular- and glandular-hairy; bracts oblong to lanceolate, 3–5 mm. Pedicels suberect to patent, 0.5–1(–2) mm, shorter than subtending bract, eglandular- and glandular-hairy. Flowers: calyx lobes 2–3 mm, ciliate, apex obtuse, glandular-hairy, rarely eglandular-hairy; corolla blue, campanulate, longer than wide, 5–6 mm diam., lobes 3–4.5 × 1.5–2 mm; stamens 5 mm; style 8 mm. Capsules ± compressed in cross section, broadly ovoid, 2–3 × 2–3 mm, apex obtuse, densely glandular-puberulent. Seeds 3–40, light brown, ellipsoid, flat, 0.6–1.2 × 0.5–0.8 mm, 0.2–0.4 mm thick, smooth. 2n = 34, 68 (Europe).

Phenology: Flowering Jun–Sep.
Habitat: Dry grasslands.
Elevation: 0–700 m.


Introduced; Ont., Que., Conn., N.H., N.Y., Eurasia.


Veronica spicata is widely distributed in horticulture and a multitude of cultivars is available. Some specimens may also be derived from a related species, V. barrelieri Schott ex Roemer & Schultes, differentiated from V. spicata by glabrous calyx lobes, and in its typical variety, by eglandular pubescence. Another closely related species, V. incana Linnaeus, has a dense white woolly indumentum and is native to northern Asia and eastern Europe; it has not escaped from cultivation in the flora area.

Selected References


Lower Taxa