Veronica americana

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Veronica americana
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Plantaginaceae
Genus: Veronica
Species: V. americana
Binomial name
Veronica americana
Schwein. ex Benth.

Veronica americana, variously called American Brooklime or American Speedwell,[1] is a plant native to temperate and arctic Asia and North America[2] where it grows in streams and bottomlands.

It is a herbaceous perennial with glabrous stems 10–100 cm long that bear terminal or axillary racemes or spikes of soft violet flowers. The leaves are 1.5–8 cm long and 3 to 20 times as long as wide, short-petiolate, glabrous, serrate to almost entire.[3]

Uses and edibility[edit]

American Speedwell is edible and nutritious and is reported to have a flavor similar to watercress. Native Americans used Veronica species as an expectorant tea to alleviate bronchial congestion associated with asthma and allergies. The plant can be confused with Skullcap and other members of the mint family. Members of the mint family have square sided stems, and Veronica species have rounded stems, and are easily distinguished from skullcap.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Veronica americana Schwein. ex Benth.". PLANTS Profile. United States Department of Agriculture; Natural Resources Conservation Service. Retrieved 2008-03-30. 
  2. ^ "Veronica americana Schwein. ex Benth.". GRIN Taxonomy for Plants. Germplasm Resources Information Network. Retrieved 2008-03-30. 
  3. ^ "Veronica americana". WTU Herbarium Image Collection. Burke Museum, University of Washington. Retrieved 2008-03-30. 
  4. ^ Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West, Gregory L. Tilford, ISBN 0-87842-359-1