Alpine Speedwell
Veronica wormskjoldii Roemer & J.A. Schultes
Family: Scrophulariaceae, Figwort
Genus: Veronica
Synonyms: Veronica alpina
Other names: brooklime
Nomenclature: wormskjoldii = named after Wormskjold
Nativity / Invasiveness: Montana native plant
Edible plant
Medicinal plant
Description

General: perennial from a loose or compact system of shallow rhizomes. Stems simple, erect, or curved at the base, 7-30 cm tall, sparsely to densely covered with long, loosely spreading soft to stiff hairs, the flower cluster more densely so and somewhat sticky or glandular.

Leaves: opposite, elliptic to lanceolate or ovate, mostly 1-4 cm long and 0.5-2 cm wide, rounded to pointed at the tip, soft- to stiff-hairy like the stem, or often hairless, slightly toothed or entire.

Flowers: several, short-stalked, in a short, congested, terminal cluster, later often elongate. At least the upper bracts usually alternate. Sepals 4, glandular-hairy. Corolla deep blue-violet, 6-10 mm wide when expanded, with 4 spreading lobes. Filaments 1-1.5 mm long. Style short, 1-3 mm long. July-August.

Fruits: capsule, glandular-short-hairy, broadly notched, 4-7 mm high, a little higher than wide. Seeds numerous, about 1 mm long.


Distribution

Moist meadows, stream banks, bogs, and moist open slopes, at moderate to high elevations in the mountains, in w. and c. parts of MT. Also from AK to CA, NM and NH.
Edible Uses

Alpine speedwell is edible, like all members of the Veronica genus, raw or cooked, though they can become bitter after they have flowered.



Medicinal Uses

These plants are somewhat astringent, and they were believed to flush toxins from the system by increasing urine flow. Alpine speedwell was used to treat urinary, blood and skin disorders, to clear stones from the kidneys, and to clear mucous from the digestive and respiratory tracts.


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