Jun. 12, 2020

broadleaf speedwell, Veronica austriaca

Back in the 1970's there was a patch of this in a field in Saginaw County. I couldn't figure it out. So one day when I was in Ann Arbor, I stopped into the University herbarium. The first person I encountered turned out to be Dr. Ed Voss. Absolutely no one knew as much about Michigan plants as Ed did. The guy that wrote the book! Although at that point only the first volume was done, and this plant would be in the last volume. Anyway, the rest is personal history. That was the beginning of a long and instructive relationship with the University of Michigan Herbarium staff. What a generous bunch of people. I've always kind of liked the small-flowered, sort of weedy plants in this genus. And now we know why. Back then this species was called V. latifolia. Now some authorities call it V. teucrium. It turns out that none of us really know what to call it! Broadleaf is an European immigrant that has been reported from CT, IL, IN, MA, MD, ME, MI, MO, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, SD, VT, WI, MB, NF, ON, QC, and SK. Beal Gardens, MSU, 5/24/12. Plantain family, Pantaginaceae.