Plant of the Month for January, 2015

Veronica gentianoides header
Veronica gentianoides

 (veh-RON-ih-ka  jen-shee-uh-NOY-deez)

General Information:

I have grown this plant for 8 years and I would not want to be without it. The gentian speedwell, is a very delicate looking plant that flowers in late spring, putting on a great floral display for about two weeks—which is too short. Even with such a short flowering season it deserves a place in your garden.

Veronica gentianoides photo by Robert Pavlis

Veronica gentianoides; photo by Robert Pavlis

Veronica gentianoides grows in full sun, but also does well in part shade. In my garden it grows on the north side of the house. It spreads slowly with above ground rhizomes. If it is left to set seed it will self-sow. I cut mine back after flowering and in part shade at least, it does not bloom again.

There is a herbarium speciman of Veronica gentianoides v. alpinia, which looks as if it blooms at under 10 cm. I could not find any references to living plant material. I’d love to get some seeds if you have the alpinia variety.

Veronica gentianoides with Doronicum

Veronica gentianoides with Doronicum; photo by Robert Pavlis

Life Cycle: perennial

Height: 45cm (1.5ft)

Bloom Time: late spring

Natural Range: Turkey, Caucasus and Iran

Habitat: open moist areas; grasslands, forests and alpine areas

Synonyms:  Veronica charadzeae, Veronica kemulariae


Light: full sun to part shade

Soil: well drained, humusy

Water: regular moisture – does not like to dry out

USDA Hardiness Zone: 4-7

Propagation: seed, division

Seedex availability (ORG&HPS annual Seed Exchange): regularly

Requires light or the small seeds should be surface sown. See
Sow @ 20°C. If seed does not germinate within 3 months, try 4°C for 1-2 months, then 20°C again.
Veronica gentianoides CLAR 2013, 2014Veronica gentianoides