One of my favorite little flowers is blooming now - Bird's Eye Veronica (Veronica chamaedrys)! This member of the Speedwell family grows wild in Europe, and is used for tea in Sweden where it's called "Tea Speedwell". It forms a low, spreading mat and when it blooms it forms a mass of beautiful little sky blue flowers with tiny white centers. The flowers only last one day (fading to pink before closing!) but new flowers open again the next day! I am just filled with delight when I see them flourishing at the edge our water feature!
Plants in the Speedwell family were believed to have 'quick healing' properties, hence they "speeded wellness." Bird's Eye Veronica was once used to treat kidney dysfunctions and coughs, and to 'purify'. There is a lot of folklore associated with this plant - the Irish wore it for protection, and a tale was told to children that if you picked it, birds would come and peck your eyes out. And due to the fact that the flowers wilt so quickly when they are picked, their German name means "man's faithfulness"!
This plant spreads quickly through fibrous roots. It is easily divided, and can grow in almost any soil. It is great for rock gardens and garden edges; it likes full sun, but will tolerate partial shade. This plant is just fun and easy to grow!