Veronica officinalis L.
common speedwell (common gypsyweed)
Plantaginaceae (Mare's-tail family)
(Previously in Scrophulariaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Jamie Fenneman     (Photo ID #4271)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Veronica officinalis
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Perennial herb from fibrous roots; stems creeping to 40 cm long, rooting at the nodes, often mat-forming, then ascending 5-25 cm tall, spreading-hairy.
Opposite, short-stalked, elliptic, 1.5-5 cm long, toothed, hairy on both surfaces.
Inflorescence of 1 to few, opposite, stalked, spike-like racemes arising from the axils of upper leaves, the racemes of several stalked flowers, the flower stalks 1-2 mm long, somewhat shorter than the alternate, narrowly lanceolate bracts; corollas light blue or lilac, saucer-shaped, 4-8 mm across, irregularly 4-lobed, the lobes much longer than the short tube, the lowest lobe narrower than the others; calyces hairy, 4-6 mm long, deeply 4-lobed, the lobes lanceolate, more or less equal; styles 3-4 mm long, exserted; stamens 2.
Capsules, 4 mm long, about as wide as long, flattened, broadly triangular or heart-shaped, scarcely to shallowly notched at the tip, hairy; seeds 6 to 12 per chamber, about 1 mm long.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.


Ecological Framework for Veronica officinalis

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres)
905 762 1000
Slope Gradient (%)
30 8 55

Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]

217 158 323
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
3 2 4
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in

ICH(4), IDF(1)

Habitat and Range

Mesic to dry fields, roadsides and open forests in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; infrequent in S BC, rare northward; introduced from Eurasia.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia