Heath Speedwell - Veronica officinalis

Description

Stems prostrate to ascending. Leaves oval to elliptical softly hairy and with short stalks.  Flowers lilac blue with darker veins, 6 to 8 mm borne in pyramidal dense long-stalked racemes

Similar Species

Other speedwells, especially V chamaedrys, V montana

Identification difficulty
ID guidance

Flowers in axillary racemes (i.e a flower spike, with several individual flowers along it, grows from the leaf axils, where leaves join the main stem).  Stems hairy all round.  Leaf stalks (petioles) short, less than 6mm. 

Recording advice

Can't be identified with confidence from a close-up photo of the flower, or from seed capsules; a general photo and details of leaves, stems and flower spikes needed

Habitat

Woods, heaths and short grassy areas mainly on dry acid soils.

When to see it

Flowering May to August.

Life History

Perennial

UK Status

Widespread and fairly frequent over most of Britain.

VC55 Status

In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 39 of the 617 tetrads.

In the current Checklist (Jeeves, 2011) it is listed as Native, Locally Frequent

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map

MAP KEY:

Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map