Weed of the week – Creeping speedwell

April 12, 2010 in Extension

Creeping (or slender) speedwell (Veronica filiformis Sm.) is a low growing, spreading plant that produces blue and white flowers from April to May in many Pennsylvania lawns and grounds. A member of the figwort family (Scrophulariaceae), creeping speedwell is a perennial which overwinters in a vegetative state, and apparently does not produce viable seed. This weed grows in dense mats and spreads quickly throughout lawns and gardens via thin stolons which root at nodes. Identification features include small roundish leaves (½ to ¾ inch diameter), with scalloped margins arranged opposite to one another on short stems. Flowering stems branch alternately off of main stems, and produce small (1/4 – 1/2 inch) attractive blue and white flowers at the ends of stems. Creeping speedwell, like all speedwells, is sometimes difficult to control with herbicides. Broadleaf herbicides containing 2,4-D, MCPP, and dicamba are typically found in lawn and garden centers, and may provide some control or suppression of creeping speedwell if applied when plants are flowering. Professional applicators can achieve improved control by applying Drive 75 Herbicide either alone or combined with products containing 2,4-D, MCPP, and dicamba. Other speedwells (corn and germander) can also be controlled with Drive 75.