Scientific Name: Veronica filiformis

Common Name: threadstalk speedwell

Other Common Names: creeping speedwell, creeping veronica, slender speedwell, whetzel weed

Habit: A trailing perennial with round creeping stems that grow up to 50 cm long and root at nodes. Plants form dense mats in turfgrass and flower from spring into early summer. Plants remain green through winter but some stalks will die back. Stems may become defoliated during hot and dry conditions but typically persist to sprout new leaves when weather conditions improve.

Leaves: Leaves are small (8 to 12 mm long) and round or kidney shaped and have sparse hairs. Lower leaves are opposite and leaves on the flowering stem are alternate. Leaf edges are notched with predominately rounded teeth. Leaves are borne from slender and delicate stems on short stalks (2 mm long). Upper and lower leaves are similar in size and shape.

Identifying Characteristics: The plant has a fibrous shallow root system with intertwining stems that root at nodes. Unlike most speedwells, plants typically lack seed pods or seed pods lack seed.

Flower Seed Head: Flowers are slighly smaller than a dime (8 mm diameter) and showy with split light blue and blue designs. Flowers are borne on long (up to 2.5 cm) stalks that arise singly from leaf axils on the upper stems.

Seed Fruit: Fruit is rare in North American plants and consists of a small (5 to 8 mm long) heart-shaped hairy pod. Seed are typically not produced in North America but common in Europe.

Where Found: Plants grow in lawns, ornamental areas, and winter grain crops. You can also find the plants in open waste places or home gardens but they do not thrive in areas where regular spring tillage is practiced. Plants may be found in many conditions but are best adapted to dry or sandy soils and shady lawns.

  • Life cycle: perennial

  • Milky sap: Not Present

  • Plant type: Herb

  • Thorns: Not Present

  • Plant family: Scrophulariaceae

  • Leaf arrangement: opposite; alternate

  • Leaf shape: oval

  • Ochrea: Not Present

  • Leaf margin: serrated

  • Stem hairs: has hairs

  • Flower color: purple; white; blue

  • Growth habit: prostrate and nonwoody; upright and nonwoody

  • Stem: round or oval

  • Leaf structure: simple

  • Leaf hairs: has hairs

  • Flower diameter: dime; pencil

  • Flower symmetry: bilateral symetry

  • Root structure: rhizomes present; fibrous; stolons present

  • Leaf stalk: none