- Eighteen species of Veronica are found in New Zealand but some of these are of limited distribution or are rare, and others are only associated with waterways and are not dealt with here
- The three most common species are scrambling speedwell (Veronica persica), turf speedwell (Veronica serpyllifolia) and field speedwell (Veronica arvensis)
Scrambling speedwell (Veronica persica)
- A small, hairy annual species that can germinate in both spring and autumn and can be found at any time of the year. As its name suggests, it has long sprawling stems which scramble along the ground and over surrounding plants
- Bright blue flowers, 10 to 15 mm across, which often make the plants stand out amongst other vegetation
- Commonest of the speedwells and is widespread throughout the country on arable land, waste open ground, along roadsides, in dry river beds, rough pastures and other open modified habitats.
Turf speedwell (Veronica serpyllifolia)
- A small perennial weed commonly found in turf but also in pastures
- Leaves are hairless
- Has stolons that allow it to creep over the ground below mower height
- Although small and inconspicuous it can sometimes form dense mats in turf
- Flowers are mostly very pale blue or white, with blue streaks
- Widespread and very common throughout New Zealand, found in pastures and lawns but also around small ponds and streams, and in low vegetation in swamps.
Field speedwell (Veronica arvensis)
- A small annual species, usually germinating in autumn and flowering in the spring, after which the plants die
- Stems and leaves are hairy and the flowers are very small, about 2-3 mm across and deep blue in colour when open but many are self-fertile and never open fully
- Very common throughout the country along roadsides, on arable land, in lawns and poor pastures
- Similar to scrambling speedwell but is smaller and does not have creeping stems, although it can still form low-growing mats.
Spring speedwell (Veronica verna)
- Only found in the South Island, although it is sometimes very common on dry stony ground in Marlborough, Canterbury and Otago.
Creeping speedwell (veronica filiformis)
- Limited in its distribution, being only found in Auckland and Palmerston North in the North Island.