A Spreading Type of Plant that has a Purple Flower in the Early Spring

Problem Grass Veronica

What Is Veronica?

Veronica, also called Speedwell or Birds Eye, is a member of the largest genus in the flowering plant family that grows mostly in the Northern Hemisphere. Veronica is both a weed and a cultivated plant. There are two distinct varieties of Veronica: the short groundcover described above and a tall plant that grows in clusters with tall spikes of flowers. The groundcover variety can easily become a lawn weed. Both varieties have many cultivars with flowers in white, blue, purple, or pink. All bloom in the Spring and some have a longer blooming season into the Summer. Veronica prefers a sunny spot and provides a pretty burst of color in the early Spring when we are coming out of a colorless Winter in Ohio.

What Causes Veronica?

Veronica spreads via seed or can be divided or split from a larger clump of flowers. Frequently, Veronica is spread from purposefully planted Veronica in gardens into unassuming lawns without permission. Most lawns contain weeds because the grass is not at the peak of health and is easily outcompeted by intruding weed plants.

How To Get Rid Of Veronica?

If you have a lot of Veronica, one option is to consider just enjoying the pretty flowers it offers in the early Spring as we exit Winter.  Another option is multiple treatments of Good Nature Organic Lawn Care’s Natural Weed Buster.  The Natural Weed Buster will likely not eliminate the Veronica, but it should help the grass compete better.  2 Spring and 2 Fall Treatments would be ideal. We will professionally treat your lawn to reduce all weeds by providing nutrients specifically for grass. If you want to do it yourself, we respect that and recommend spot treatments of Bonide Maize Weed Preventer. Additionally, it’s recommended to remove both flowers and seed pods as they grow so the seeds do not spread and flowers are not pollinated. Digging up or removing Veronica by hand is most effective before it is too widespread in your lawn.

How To Prevent Veronica In Your Lawn?

In general, the best defense against all weeds, including Veronica, is to have a thick healthy lawn, mowed high. We recommend your grass be cut to a length of three to four inches. Using Good Nature Earth Turf Spring, our natural fertilizer, will help achieve lawn thickness. Once you’ve reduced the amount of Veronica you have, you may also want to consider Slice Seeding to help thicken your lawn and keep the Veronica from returning. Our general Ohio recommendation for lawn grass is a mix of 5% Microclover, 90% Turf Type Tall Fescue, and 5% Kentucky Bluegrass for our region of the United States. We sell a pre-made mix: our Tuff Turf Lawn Seed provides the Turf Type Tall Fescue and Kentucky Bluegrass and we also sell bags of Microclover.

Is Veronica Edible?

Again, there are many species of Veronica, so know what you’re doing before eating anything. Most varieties of Veronica are fully edible (leaves, flowers, roots) said to taste like Watercress. Leaves can be dried to make tea, which is said to alleviate allergy symptoms. Dogs are not negatively affected by eating Veronica.

How To Garden With Veronica?

Interestingly, many people actually plant Veronica in their gardens. It is both deer and rabbit resistant plus it’s both salt and drought tolerant, afterall. It’s hardy! The pretty flowers also attract hummingbirds, butterflies, and other pollinators. You might try digging up some of the Veronica in your lawn to transplant it in your garden. You may just gain a new appreciation for this plant!

How To Identify Veronica In Your Lawn

Problem Grass Veronica Weed Lawn
  • Four-petaled blue or white flowers
  • Bloom in the Spring
  • Paired, lobed leaves with scalloped edges
  • Fast spreading and growing
  • Heart-shaped seed pods

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