Veronica scutellata (Marsh Speedwell)

Plant Info
Also known as: Narrow-leaved Speedwell, Skullcap Speedwell
Genus:Veronica
Family:Plantaginaceae (Plantain)
Life cycle:perennial
Origin:native
Habitat:part shade, sun; wet; bogs, marshes, wet meadows, moist woods, seeps
Bloom season:May - September
Plant height:4 to 20 inches
Wetland Indicator Status:GP: OBL MW: OBL NCNE: OBL
MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):Minnesota county distribution map
National distribution (click map to enlarge):National distribution map

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Detailed Information

Flower: Flower shape: 4-petals Flower shape: tubular Cluster type: raceme

[photo of flowers] Long-stalked flowers borne in open racemes from the upper leaf axils. Each flower is about ¼ across with 4 blue, egg-shaped lobes, the upper lobe larger and lower one smaller. Lobes are fused at the base forming a short tube, greenish on the inside of the throat, with 2 white stamens and a single style projecting from the center. Only a 1 to few flowers may be open at any given time.

Leaves and stems: Leaf attachment: opposite Leaf type: simple

[photo of leaves] Leaves are opposite, lance-linear, 1 to 3 inches long, up to about ¼ inch wide, toothless or with a few minute, widely-spaced teeth along the edges, pointed at the tip, and stalkless. Stems and leaves are typically hairless, occasionally sparsely hairy, rarely quite hairy.

Fruit: Fruit type: capsule/pod

[photo of developing fruit] Fruit is a flattened, hairless, heart-shaped capsule less than ¼ inch long, wider than long. Inside are up to 20 flattened seeds.

Notes:

A circumpolar species of both eastern and western hemispheres, Marsh Speedwell is widespread throughout the upper 2/3 of North America, preferring wetter locations at higher elevations in its southern range, and extending north beyond the Arctic Circle. It can have a small, wispy stature and sparse floral array which makes this a very inconspicuous species in its swampy habitats. Even with a more robust growth, the narrow leaves and loose racemes arising from the upper leaf axils, with flowers or fruits on long, wiry stalks is a distinct combination. Of note is that this species is typically hairless throughout, but the specimens we came upon in Lake County were uncommonly hairy.

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More photos

Photos by K. Chayka and Peter M. Dziuk taken in Lake County.

Comments

Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?

Posted by: gary - Carlton County
on: 2020-07-19 13:39:09

In a woodland vernal pond.

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