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Speedwell

The plant genus Veronica is extremely diverse. The different species of Veronica feel at home in very different garden areas. They thrive not only in a perennial flower bed, but also in a rock garden, in shaded areas or even at the edge of a pond. The varieties of Veronica plants range from the low-growing Veronica teucrium 'Knallblau' to the mighty figure of the Culver's root, which grows well over one metre in good conditions. The German name “Ehrenpreis” refers to the healing power of the plant. In folk medicine, Veronica officinalis, which is originally from Central Europe, has been highly prized for centuries.  It is meant to stimulate the metabolism and help with colds.

Veronica from the Lubera Garden Shop

Over the decades, various valuable garden species have been bred from more than 400 different wild species, most of them from Eastern and Central Europe. In the Lubera garden shop you will find a wide range of different, perennial species varieties with flower colours ranging from white to blue to pink. The flowering times of the various Veronica plants extend from early summer to autumn, depending on the variety.

   
 
   
 

Veronica - a plant with many faces

Let's start with the smallest: Veronica liwanensis, the dwarf variety with a cushion-like habit, grows flat and is just ten inches high. From early summer, this plant turns into a bright flower carpet. This variety is perfect in a rock garden or it can beautify the gravelly gaps between natural stone slabs. Slightly higher is the Veronica gentianoides, which flowers white. Thanks to its hardy green leaves, it is a valuable garden perennial all year round. It is about forty inches high and is particularly beautiful when planted in small groups. The long-leaved Veronica longifolia 'Blauriesin' also pleases the eye with its intensely luminous flowers in blue. `Blauriesin` is one of the best known varieties and a creation of the famous German perennial breeder Karl Foerster. It flowers in abundance and grows to a height of about one metre. Culver's root grows even higher and is the most eye-catching among these stunning blooms. Its spikes grow upright into the air. The flowers are pink, purple or white, depending on the variety.

While the high varieties prefer a sunny location with moderately dry, well-drained soil, there is also a Veronica plant which prefers a location on the water. Veronica beccabunga loves growing on the edge of water and doesn’t even mind getting its feet wet!

Easy to grow

The genus Veronica is extremely easy to care for and needs very little work. In the spring, applying fertiliser supports growth and flowering. Watering is only necessary in extreme dry periods. In the summer, it is advisable to give support to the higher varieties, so that they stay upright. Flowering shoots should be cut back in a timely manner in order to promote a second flowering in late summer. Those who want to rejuvenate or propagate these fabulous plants themselves can do so by dividing the clumps in the spring. Some varieties can also be propagated from seeds.

In the garden and in pots

With their upright growth and flower spikes, which point straight up, Veronica plants give garden beds very clear vertical structures. Planting them in groups creates an impressive colour effect. Tall growing varieties such as Culver's root can be placed in the background of the display, while low varieties, together with other perennials such as daylilies or sneezeweed can be placed in the bed’s foreground, therefore showing all the plants at their best advantage. For partially shaded woody areas, low species such as Veronica peduncularis are recommended. In turn, the rock garden is perfect for those species that prefer dry, warm locations. Among them is Veronica spicata nana `Blue Carpet` . This Veronica plant does not differ in its care from the other species. In general, it can be used in mixed perennial borders or rockeries for a full effect. It can also be easily placed in containers and used on balconies and terraces. The flowering spikes can be beautifully integrated into summer bouquets from your own garden. Before you buy a Veronica plant, it is worth taking a closer look at the varieties in order to pick out the right plant for different locations in the garden.

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