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Germander Speedwell

Veronica chamaedrys

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:
20 centimetres tall
Gardens, grassland, hedgerows, lawns, meadows, roadsides, woodland.

Blue, 4 petals
4 blue petals with white centres on short stalks.
A heart-shaped, hairy seed capsule.
Well-toothed, hairy, oval, short or unstalked leaves. The leaves appear in opposite pairs along the stems. Similar in appearance to Wood Speedwell (Veronica montana) but that has stems which are hairy all round. The stems of Germander Speedwell have 2 opposite white lines of hairs along its stems.
Other Names:
Bird's Eye, Bird's-eye Speedwell, Cat's Eye, Creeping Speedwell.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Veronica chamaedrys, also known as creeping speedwell or germander speedwell, is a perennial plant that is native to Europe and Asia. It is a low-growing ground cover that produces blue or purple flowers in the spring and summer. The plant is often used as a ground cover in gardens and can be propagated by dividing the roots or by taking stem cuttings. It can also be invasive in certain areas.


Germander Speedwell, or Veronica chamaedrys, is a common wildflower found in many parts of Europe and North America. Its delicate blue flowers and low-growing habit make it a popular choice for gardeners, while its medicinal properties have made it a valued herb for centuries.


Germander Speedwell is a low-growing perennial plant that typically reaches a height of only 5-20 cm. Its leaves are small and oval-shaped, with toothed edges, and grow in opposite pairs on the stem. The plant produces clusters of small, five-petaled flowers in shades of blue, purple, or white, which bloom from late spring through early summer.


Germander Speedwell is native to Europe and western Asia, but has been naturalized in many other parts of the world, including North America. It is commonly found growing in meadows, along roadsides, and in other open areas. It prefers well-drained soil and partial to full sun.


Germander Speedwell has a long history of medicinal use. It was traditionally used to treat a wide range of ailments, including respiratory infections, digestive issues, and skin conditions. The herb is still used today in natural medicine as an expectorant, diuretic, and wound healer.

In addition to its medicinal properties, Germander Speedwell is also a popular choice for gardeners. Its low-growing habit and pretty blue flowers make it an attractive addition to rock gardens, borders, and other small spaces. The plant is easy to grow and requires little maintenance.


While Germander Speedwell is not considered endangered, it is important to note that many wildflowers are threatened by habitat loss, climate change, and other environmental factors. If you are interested in growing Germander Speedwell or other wildflowers, it is important to choose seeds or plants that have been sustainably sourced and to take care to create a habitat that is conducive to their growth.

In conclusion, Germander Speedwell is a charming little wildflower with a long history of medicinal use and a place in many gardens. Its delicate beauty and ease of cultivation make it a popular choice, while its conservation reminds us of the importance of preserving and protecting the natural world.

Medicinal Properties

Germander Speedwell contains a number of compounds that are believed to be responsible for its medicinal properties. These include tannins, which have an astringent effect and can help to soothe inflamed tissues, and saponins, which act as natural expectorants and help to loosen phlegm in the lungs.

The plant is also rich in flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. These compounds have been shown to help protect against cellular damage and to promote overall health and wellness.

In traditional medicine, Germander Speedwell was often used as a tea or infusion. Today, it can be found in a number of natural remedies, including tinctures, capsules, and creams.

Culinary Uses

While Germander Speedwell is primarily known for its medicinal and ornamental properties, it can also be used as a culinary herb. The leaves of the plant have a slightly bitter flavor and can be used to add a tangy, herbaceous note to salads, soups, and other dishes.

In some parts of Europe, Germander Speedwell is also used to make a type of tea known as "gypsy tea". This tea is made by steeping the leaves and flowers of the plant in hot water and is believed to have a number of health benefits, including improved digestion and respiratory health.

Growing Germander Speedwell

If you're interested in growing Germander Speedwell, the good news is that it's a relatively easy plant to cultivate. The plant prefers well-drained soil and partial to full sun, and can be grown from seed or from small plants.

Once established, Germander Speedwell requires little maintenance. However, it is important to keep the plant well-watered during periods of drought and to prune it back after flowering to promote new growth.

Germander Speedwell is a lovely little plant with a long history of medicinal use and a place in many gardens. Whether you're interested in its health benefits, its ornamental value, or its culinary uses, there's no denying the charm and versatility of this delightful wildflower.

Folklore and Symbolism

In addition to its practical uses, Germander Speedwell has also been the subject of folklore and symbolism. In some parts of Europe, the plant was believed to have magical properties and was used to protect against evil spirits and bring good luck.

The plant has also been associated with a number of religious and cultural traditions. In Christianity, the blue flowers of Germander Speedwell were said to represent the tears of the Virgin Mary, while in ancient Greece, the plant was dedicated to the goddess Athena and was believed to symbolize wisdom and knowledge.

Today, Germander Speedwell remains a popular symbol in many cultures. In parts of Germany, the plant is used to decorate maypoles and is believed to bring good fortune to those who dance around it. In North America, the plant is sometimes used as a natural dye, producing a blue color that has been used in traditional Native American textiles.


Germander Speedwell is a fascinating and versatile plant with a long and storied history. Whether you're interested in its medicinal properties, its ornamental value, or its cultural significance, there's no denying the charm and beauty of this lovely little wildflower.


Germander Speedwell filmed in several locations between the 12th and 14th May 2023.


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Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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