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Pink Water Speedwell

Veronica catenata

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Veronicaceae (Speedwell)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
50 centimetres tall
Gardens, ponds, riversides, water, waterside.

Pink, 4 petals
Pinkish-coloured flowers growing in spikes. Similar in appearance to Blue Water Speedwell (Veronica anagallis-aquatica) but the flowers are pale pink and not lilac-blue. The flower spikes are also shorter.
A 2-lobed, flattened capsule.
Narrow leaves. Blue Water Speedwell has broader leaves than Pink Water Speedwell. Also, the stems of Pink Water Speedwell are often tinged purple. Both species frequently hybridise and grow together in similar habitats. Perennial.
Other Names:
Chain Speedwell, Creeping Speedwell.
Frequency (UK):
Occasionally seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Veronica catenata, commonly known as creeping speedwell, is a perennial herbaceous plant in the plantain family Plantaginaceae. It is native to Europe and Asia, but has been introduced and naturalized in many other parts of the world. The plant has small, blue or purple flowers and creeping or trailing stems that can root at the nodes. It is often used as a ground cover or for erosion control in gardens and landscaping.


Pink Water Speedwell, or Veronica catenata, is a delicate and charming perennial wildflower that is native to North America. It belongs to the plantain family, Plantaginaceae, and can be found growing in moist meadows, wetlands, and along streams and rivers. The plant is known for its slender stems, pretty pink flowers, and its ability to attract pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.

Physical Characteristics

Pink Water Speedwell is a small plant, usually growing to a height of 12 to 20 inches. The stems are slender and hairy, with oval-shaped leaves that grow in pairs along the stem. The leaves have toothed edges and a pointed tip, and are about 1 to 3 inches long. The flowers are the most distinctive feature of the Pink Water Speedwell. They bloom from late spring to early summer and are about 1 inch wide, with four to six petals. The flowers are a beautiful pink color, with a white center and purple veins. They grow in a raceme, a long, narrow cluster of flowers, at the top of the stem.

Growing Conditions

Pink Water Speedwell is a hardy plant that can grow in a range of conditions. It prefers full sun to partial shade and moist to wet soils. It is often found growing in meadows, along streams and rivers, and in wetlands. The plant can also tolerate some dryness, making it a versatile addition to gardens with varying moisture levels.

Planting and Maintenance

If you are looking to grow Pink Water Speedwell in your garden, there are a few things to keep in mind. The plant prefers a well-drained soil with a neutral to slightly acidic pH. It is a low-maintenance plant that does not require much attention once established. However, it is important to keep the soil moist, especially during the plant's growing season. Mulching around the base of the plant can help to retain moisture and prevent weeds from growing.


Pink Water Speedwell has several benefits, both for humans and the environment. The plant is a favorite of pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds, making it a valuable addition to any garden or landscape. It can also help to prevent erosion along stream banks and riverbeds. Additionally, the plant has been used for medicinal purposes by Native American tribes, who brewed it into a tea to treat stomach and respiratory issues.

Pink Water Speedwell is a charming and beneficial plant that can add beauty to any garden or natural landscape. With its pretty pink flowers, low-maintenance requirements, and ability to attract pollinators, it is a great choice for those looking to add some color and life to their surroundings.

Uses of Pink Water Speedwell

Pink Water Speedwell has been used for medicinal purposes by various Native American tribes. They used the plant to treat various ailments such as stomach and respiratory issues. The plant contains tannins and a bitter principle that can help to soothe inflammation and digestive problems.

In addition to its medicinal uses, Pink Water Speedwell has been used for ornamental purposes in landscaping and gardening. The plant can be grown in borders, rock gardens, and along the edges of water features. It also works well as a ground cover, and can be used to control erosion along stream banks and riverbeds.


Pink Water Speedwell is a wildflower that is native to North America, and like many native plants, it is facing threats from habitat loss, development, and climate change. The plant is classified as a species of concern in some states, and conservation efforts are underway to protect and preserve its natural habitats. You can help to conserve Pink Water Speedwell by growing it in your garden, and by supporting organizations that work to protect native plant species and their habitats.

Pink Water Speedwell is a delightful and versatile plant that can add beauty and ecological value to your garden or natural landscape. With its pretty pink flowers, low-maintenance requirements, and ability to attract pollinators, it is a great choice for those looking to add some color and life to their surroundings. Whether you are a gardener, conservationist, or just appreciate the natural beauty of wildflowers, Pink Water Speedwell is a plant worth getting to know.


If you want to propagate Pink Water Speedwell, it can be done by dividing the plant in the spring or fall. Dig up the plant and gently separate the roots, making sure each section has some roots and foliage. Replant the divisions at the same depth they were growing and keep the soil moist until they are established.

Another way to propagate Pink Water Speedwell is by collecting the seeds in the fall after the flowers have faded. Sow the seeds in a cold frame or a sheltered spot outdoors in the fall or early spring. The seeds require stratification, which is a period of cold, moist conditions to break dormancy and initiate germination. The plants will take a few years to mature and produce flowers.

Pests and Diseases

Pink Water Speedwell is relatively resistant to pests and diseases, but it can be susceptible to powdery mildew and leaf spot. These can be controlled by practicing good hygiene in the garden, such as removing infected leaves and debris, and providing good air circulation around the plants. In severe cases, a fungicide may be necessary.

Deer and rabbits do not usually eat Pink Water Speedwell, making it a good choice for gardens that are prone to wildlife damage. However, slugs and snails may be attracted to the plant, so you may need to take measures to control these pests.

In conclusion, Pink Water Speedwell is a lovely and beneficial plant that is well-suited to a range of growing conditions. Whether you are looking to add some color and life to your garden or natural landscape, or you are interested in the plant's medicinal properties, Pink Water Speedwell is a plant worth exploring. With proper care and maintenance, this charming wildflower can provide years of beauty and ecological value.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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