Veronica cinerea
Common Name: ash-colored speedwell 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Plantaginaceae
Native Range: Eastern Mediterranean to Turkey
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 0.25 to 0.50 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to July
Bloom Description: Purple-blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Ground Cover
Flower: Showy


Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Best performance occurs with consistent, regular moisture combined with sharp soil drainage. Established plants have some tolerance for occasional periods of dry soil.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Veronica cinerea, commonly known as ashen speedwell or gray speedwell, is a dense, multi-stemmed, mat-forming, evergreen perennial or sub-shrub that typically grows to only 3-6” tall, but spreads like a ground cover to 12” wide or more. It is native to the eastern Mediterranean and Asia Minor.

Tiny, pale purple-blue flowers with white centers bloom in early summer in abundant, upright, terminal racemes (10-25 flowers per raceme) on trailing stems clad with small, narrow, tomentose, thyme-like, silver-gray leaves.

The Plant List currently maintains that Veronica cinerea is a synonym of Veronica wyomingensis.

Genus name honors Saint Veronica who reportedly gave a handkerchief to Jesus so he could wipe sweat from his face on the way to Calvary, with some genus plants having markings that resemble the markings on the sacred handkerchief.

Specific epithet means ash-colored.


No serious insect or disease problems. Root rot may occur in wet, poorly-drained soils.


Rock gardens, foundations, beds, border fronts, and other sunny spots in the landscape. Interesting small area ground cover.