Creeping Speedwell


Creeping Speedwell, Slender Speedwell, Creeping Veronica

Veronica filiformis

Creeping speedwell is a low growing perennial that prefers shade, moist soils, good fertility and a low mowing height. Creeping speedwell is also sold as an ornamental ground cover and is available and many greenhouses. Many times the speedwell will escape from the landscape beds into the lawn.

Creeping speedwell spreads by stolons much like ground ivy and displays its blue-violet flowers in the spring.

There are at least seven speedwell species that live in Michigan. It can be difficult to distinguish creeping speedwell from germander and corn speedwell. Germander speedwell, also a perennial, tends to be more erect and has larger, elongated leaves. Corn speedwell is primarily a winter annual that grows in small mounds. Corn speedwell can be distinguished by it heart-shaped seed capsules that it produces in the spring.

Other weeds most often confused with creeping speedwell are ground ivy and henbit. The leaves on ground ivy differ from creeping speedwell in that they are much larger and glabrous (without hairs). All three have square stems and opposite leaf arrangement. The leaves on henbit are sessile (no petioles).

  • Crops Affected: turf


    Creeping speedwell can be difficult to manage because it is so well adapted to most turf management practices. Often creeping speedwell will thrive in moist, shaded, nutrient-rich soils. Raising the mowing height and increasing sunlight will help reduce the competitiveness of this pesky perennial. However, because the speedwell is so aggressive, it is often necessary to remove the speedwell with a herbicide. Once removed, proper management practices will be much more effective in preventing future infestations.

    Similar Species

    Corn Speedwell, Germander Speedwell, Ground Ivy, Henbit