This section is from the book "Sub-Alpine Plants Or Flowers Of The Swiss Woods And Meadows", by H. Stuart Thompson. Also available from Amazon: Sub-Alpine Plants: Or, Flowers of the Swiss Woods and Meadows.
Herbs with opposite stem-leaves and small flowers, blue, white, or pink, in spikes or racemes, or in the axils of alternate floral-leaves. Calyx 4 or rarely 5-cleft. Corolla with very short tube, and rotate limb, deeply 4-cleft. Stamens 2. Capsule more or less flattened laterally, and opening in 2 valves. Seeds few.
A large genus in the northern hemisphere; a few species extending into the tropics and southern hemisphere, and others (mostly shrubs) are peculiar to New Zealand and Australia.
A stout, glabrous plant with hollow stems, broad, oval, serrate, shining leaves and small bright blue flowers in axillary panicles.
Ditches, damp mountain-sides, and wet places generally from the plains to about 5000 feet. May to August.
Europe, Northern and Western Asia, Himalaya, Japan, N. Africa.
Foliage very similar to that of the Germander Speedwell, but more glabrous. Stem trailing, rooting at the nodes. Leaves ovate-cordate, on long stalks. Racemes loose, slender, and with few flowers, which are pale blue or mauve. Capsule very flat, orbicular, ciliate.
Moist mountain woods. May to August.
Temperate Europe, Corsica, Algeria. British.
Stem erect, roundish, 10-16 inches high, hairy like the leaves. Leaves sessile, ovate, acute, from a cordate base; upper ones acuminate, all sharply serrate, entire at the base. Racemes opposite, loose. Peduncle shorter than the leaf. Pedicels erect, usually longer than the linear-lanceolate bracts, patent when fruit is ripe. Flowers pale pink or mauve. Capsule erect, compressed, nearly globular, slightly emarginate, twice as long as the calyx.
Shady declivities and woods in the Alps and lower mountains. June to August.
Carpathians; Eastern, Central, and Western Alps; Pyrenees, Jura; Central and Southern Europe from Spain to Turkey.
Stems creeping, much-branched, rooting at the nodes, usually about 6-8 inches high. Leaves obovate or oblong, toothed, and hairy. Racemes or spikes axillary, hairy. Flowers nearly sessile, rather small, pale blue or lilac. Capsule obovate or obcordate.
Woods and dry, bushy pastures in the plains and lower mountains. Sometimes up to 5000-6000 feet in Savoy. June to September.
Europe, Western Asia, N. America. (British).
Plant 6-12 inches high, covered with greyish pubescence, and with an almost woody rootstock. Stems prostrate or ascending. Leaves sub-sessile, oblong or lanceolate, strongly toothed. Flowers blue, large, in axillary and opposite spikes, numerous. Calyx hairy, with 5 very unequal segments. Capsule oboval, hairy, at length longer than the calyx. Style rather longer than the capsule.
Dry pastures, borders of mountain woods, etc. June, July.
Central and Southern Europe, Western Asia; very common in Switzerland and France.