Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun. Best performance occurs with consistent, regular moisture combined with sharp soil drainage, particularly in winter. Plants have shallow roots and are generally intolerant of dry soil conditions. Tolerates light shade. Remove spent flower spikes to encourage additional bloom. Plants may be cut back to basal growth after flowering.
Veronica spicata, commonly known as spike speedwell, is an upright, clump-forming, herbaceous perennial that typically produces a summer-long bloom of tiny, star-shaped, violet-blue flowers in dense, long-flowering, tapered-at-the-top, spike-like terminal racemes atop stems rising well above a foliage mound to 24-30” tall. Foliage consists of toothed, narrow, linear to lanceolate, medium green leaves (each to 2” long). This species is native to northern Europe and Asia. Flowers typically bloom from mid-June to August. Flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies. Cultivars with blue, violet-blue, pink and white flowers are available in commerce.
Genus name honors Saint Veronica who reportedly gave Jesus a cloth to wipe his face on the way to Calvary. Some plants in the genus reportedly have markings that resemble markings on the sacred cloth.
Specific epithet from Latin means spiked in reference to the flower spikes on this plant.
'Glory', often sold as ROYAL CANDLES, is an erect, bushy, clump-forming, compact spiked speedwell cultivar which typically grows to only 10-12" tall. Leafy foliage stems typically rise to only 3" tall but are topped with dense, vertical, tapered-at-the-top, deep blue-purple flower spikes (racemes to 12" long) which bloom in late spring to mid-summer. Narrow, lance-shaped, medium green leaves (to 2" long). Plant Patent Applied For (PPAF).
No serious insect or disease problems. Root rot may occur in wet, poorly-drained soils.
Rock gardens, foundations, beds, borders and other sunny spots in the landscape. Good fresh cut flower.