PINK WATER-SPEEDWELL

Veronica catenata

Plantain Family [Plantaginaceae]

month8jun month8june month8jul month8july month8aug

status
statusZnative
flower
flower8pink
inner
inner8white
morph
morph8zygo
petals
petalsZ4
type
typeZspiked
stem
stem8round
sex
sexZbisexual

18th June 2013, Leighton Moss, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Unlike the similar Blue Water-speedwell this has (usually) pink flowers and purple-tinged stems. Here growing half-way across the (here partly flooded) causeway between two lakes at Leighton Moss.


18th June 2013, Leighton Moss, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Pink Water-speedwell has racemes (flowering branches) which spread outwards from the main stem more than do those of Blue Water-Speedwell, especially those branches which have flowers turning to seed (leftmost branch near the top). Here the stems look more sturdy than do those of other specimens (possibly because there is a possibility that this is the hybrid between the two - but the hybrid is said to grow where both parents grow and to have blue flowers - and your Author saw no Blue Water-Speedwell there).


18th June 2013, Leighton Moss, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD


18th June 2013, Leighton Moss, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Topmost pairs of leaves are narrower than those of Blue Water-Speedwell.


18th June 2013, Leighton Moss, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Just like Blue Water-Speedwell), the leaves are opposite and broad and long but on Pink Water-speedwell they are also without even short stalks and often appear to be (almost) fused together around the stem.
It is too early for these specimens to have gone to fruit, but those shown below from Southern England have gone to fruit.


18th June 2013, Leighton Moss, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
The bracts (which are just below the pedicels (flower stalks) are longer than those pedicels on Pink Water-speedwell (whereas they are shorter on Blue Water-Speedwell). As with all Speedwells, there are 4 petals, the topmost is much larger than the bottom petal, and the two side-petals slightly smaller than the top petal.


9th Sept 2009, Ainsdale, Sefton Coast, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
The pink flowers have one white style with discoidal stigma and two white filaments either side bearing purple stigma. The flower on the left is abnormal, having two extra petals making 6 instead of the usual 4 (the flower on the right has got it right).


9th Sept 2009, Ainsdale, Sefton Coast, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Tiny teeth on the leaves.


9th Sept 2009, Ainsdale, Sefton Coast, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
The leaves may, or may not have tiny, forwardly-directed teeth.


13th July 2015, ponds, Fobney Island, Reading. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
These specimens have some flowers that have gone to fruit, whilst some flowers are still extant. They are very densely branched, so much so that it is often difficult to see what's what.


13th July 2015, ponds, Fobney Island, Reading. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
The flowers are nominally pink, especially the upper petal, but have large patches of white. Far left are one or two fruits which are here round and reddish.


11th July 2015, ponds, Fobney Island, Reading. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Renee Grayer
More fruits, some green at bottom right, others red.


13th July 2015, ponds, Fobney Island, Reading. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
Berries still wrapped up by 4 green sepals at the bottom right.

Two differentiators between Pink and Blue Water-speedwells:
The pedicels (stalks of the flowers or fruit) are on Pink Water-speedwell fully erect (pointing upwards) when in fruit - [Whereas on Blue Water-Speedwell they are only nearly erect ].



13th July 2015, ponds, Fobney Island, Reading. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
More berries.

On Pink Water-speedwell the capsules are wider than they are long and are also deeply notched at the apex [whereas on Blue Water-Speedwell the fruits (capsules) are (almost spherical in shape) and usually not notched at the apex where the style emerges (or if they are notched, then that notch is only very slight]


Hybridizes with :

  • Blue Water-Speedwell (Veronica anagallis-aquatica) to produce Hybrid Water-speedwell, Veronica × lackschewitzii which is usually more robust and with longer racemes of flowers than does either of the parents. The flowers of the hybrid are blue and often sterile, but sometimes partially fertile. Usually occurring with both parents nearby, but sometimes without. It occurs throughout the range of the parents, but especially in in South and East of England. It rarely occurs in Scotland.

Uniquely identifiable characteristics

Pink Water-Speedwell is native and occurs most often in muddy places where there is no or only little flow of water. It is frequent in the South of Britain but rare and coastal in the North and West of Britain. It is widespread in Ireland!


  Veronica catenata  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Plantaginaceae  

Distribution
 family8Plantain family8Plantaginaceae
 BSBI maps
genus8Veronica
Veronica
(Speedwells)

PINK WATER-SPEEDWELL

Veronica catenata

Plantain Family [Plantaginaceae]