Corn Speedwell, common speedwell, rock speedwell, wall speedwell
Description: winter annual
Place of origin: Europe
Urban habitat: commonly found in compacted soil in lawns and around the base of buildings and in pavement openings; can tolerate a wide range of soil conditions but thrives in dry, sandy or gravelly soil in full sun.
Ecological function: disturbance-adapted colonizer of bare ground.
History: Although native in Europe, Veronica arvensis has become naturalized across many continents including North America, Africa, and Asia. The plant was named after St. Veronica, the woman who gave Jesus a cloth to wipe his face on the way to Calvary, because the markings on her handkerchief were said to resemble the plant. Corn Speedwell has a history of medicinal uses in Europe used as an astringent, diruetic, blood purifier, to treat coughs, burns, skin ulcers, and due to its high vitamin C content, used as a scurvy preventative.