Veronica stricta var. egmontiana


Veronica: Named after Saint Veronica, who gave Jesus her veil to wipe his brow as he carried the cross through Jerusalem, perhaps because the common name of this plant is 'speedwell'. The name Veronica is often believed to derive from the Latin vera 'truth' and iconica 'image', but it is actually derived from the Macedonian name Berenice which means 'bearer of victory'.
stricta: From the Latin strictus 'upright, stiff'
egmontiana: of Mount Egmont

Current Conservation Status

2018 - At Risk - Naturally Uncommon

Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2012 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2009 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, Paul D. Champion, Shannel P. Courtney, Peter B. Heenan, John W. Barkla, Ewen K. Cameron, David A. Norton and Rodney A. Hitchmough. File size: 792KB

Previous Conservation Status

2012 - Not Threatened
2009 - Not Threatened
2004 - Not Threatened


Veronica stricta var. egmontiana (L.B.Moore) Garn.-Jones



Brief Description

Bushy shrub bearing pairs of long narrow pointed thin leaves inhabiting Mt Taranaki. Leaves variable, to 106mm long, widest at base and tapering towards narrow tip. Leaf bud with no gap at base. Flowers white or pinkish, spike to 16cm long.

Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code


The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.

Structural Class

Dicotyledonous Trees & Shrubs


Hebe salicifolia var. egmontiana Cockayne nomen nudum, Hebe stricta var. egmontiana L.B.Moore


Endemic. North Island. Mt Taranaki (Mt Egmont National Park)


Common in open sites within montane forest and in subalpine scrub.


Compact shrub or small tree 2(-4) m tall. Branchlets glabrescent. Stem internodes shorter than or equal to stem diameter. Leaf bud without sinus. Leaves, spreading, 60-70(-100) mm, dark green, yellow-green or glaucous (not glossy), linear-lanceolate, fleshy, tapering to a narrow acute tip, leaf margin usually entire, or toothed. Inflorescence lateral, racemose, much longer than leaves, occasionally drooping, bracts and calyx-lobes ciliolate otherwise all other inflorescence structures glabrous. Flowers white, not obviously scented. Corolla tube 6 mm, exceeding calyx, narrow, cylindric, lobes rounded. Capsules < 5 mm long, glabrous, erect to spreading.

Similar Taxa

Veronica stricta var. egmontiana and var. lata differ from other varieties by their compact branching habit, somewhat firmly fleshy leaves, which may be dull or glossy, shorter stem internodes and tetraploid chromosome number. Veronica stricta var. egmontiana differs from var. lata by the linear-lanceolate, dull green (not glossy) leaves, and generally larger growth form. There are other subtle floral differences which appear to align this variety with Veronica phormiiphila (also known as Hebe paludosa). The name Veronica stricta var. egmontiana is here used in the sense of the original naming author, such that this variety is restricted to Mt Egmont. However some field botanists feel that those tetraploid plants found on the Central Volcanic Plateau and the greywacke ranges (Kaimanawa and Kaweka Ranges) endemic var. lata should be merged with var. egmontiana at species rank. This unpublished opinion has confused the literature as to where var. egmontiana actually occurs.


(July-) August (-October) but flowering can also occur sporadically throughout the year


(September-) November (-January) but seed capsules may be found throughout the year

Propagation Technique

Easy from fresh seed and semi hardwood cuttings.


Although currently considered Not Threatened, as circumscribed here, this variety as an Mt Egmont endemic should be assessed At Risk/Range Restricted

Chromosome No.

2n = 80

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


Where To Buy

Not commonly cultivated. Occasional available from garden centres. An attractive plant, worthy of species rank.



Fact Sheet Prepared by P.J. de Lange (1 February 2005). Description based on Allan (1961) - see also Bayly & Kellow (2006)

References and further reading

Allan, H.H. 1961: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. I, Wellington, Government Printer

Bayly M. and Kellow A. 2006. An Illustrated Guide to New Zealand Hebes.Te Papa Press: Wellington

This page last updated on 22 Feb 2016