Veronica armstrongii var. annulata Petrie, Hebe annulata (Petrie) Andersen, Hebe annulata (Petrie) Cockayne et Allan nom. illeg., Leonohebe annulata (Petrie) Heads
Vascular – Native
Trees & Shrubs - Dicotyledons
2n = 42
Current conservation status
The threat classification status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS) – more information about this can be found on the NZTCS website This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: By Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley. Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – a suggested threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
2017 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon | Qualifiers: RR, St, Sp
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon | Qualifiers: RR, Sp, St
2009 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon
2004 | Sparse
Spreading low shrub bearing masses of narrow scaly twigs inhabiting the mountains of western Otago. Leaves scale-like, rounded, clasping stem, with a fuzzy line between the hairy-margined leaves (lens needed for both). Flowers white, in groups of 4-10 at tips of twigs.
Endemic. Eastern South Island where known from Otago and Southland. Sparingly recorded from the Remarkables, Hector, Criffel Ranges and the Takitimu Mountains, also known by one old hsitoric gathering from near Kurow.
Upper montane to subalpine. A species of open, sparsely vegetated shrubland where it is usually found at the toe of steep slopes, often in and around boulders.
Low, spreading shrub up to 0.5 x 1 m. Branches whip-like, at first erect or ascending, becoming spreading at maturity; internodes 0.5-2.2 mm; branchlets, including leaves 1.8-2.9 mm wide; fused leaf bases finely hairy; nodal joint obscure, exposed or hidden; leaves long-persistent, not readily abscising. Leaves fused, scale-like, appressed, not thickened near apex; apex obtuse, sometimes finely mucronate; margin conspicuously fine-ciliate; exposed surface (the leaf undersides) green to yellowish-green, veins not evident. Inflorescence 25-70 mm long, terminal, unbranched, bearing 4-10 flowers. Bracts opposite and decussate, fused, semi-circular, obtuse. Flowers white, sessile. Calyx 1.5-2.2 mm, 3-lobed, that is with anterior lobes fused to apex (forming one large lobe which may split longitudinally); lobes broadly oblong, obtuse or slightly emarginate. Corolla tube 1.5-1.7 x 1.2 mm, funnelform, shorter than or equaling calyx, inner portion hairy; lobes white at anthesis, broadly oblong, elliptic to obovate, obtuse, erect or recurved, longer then corolla tube. Stamen filaments 2.6-3.5 mm; anthers 1-1.2 mm, pink or purple. Ovary 0.6-0.8 mm, globose, apex didymous; style 2.5-4.2. Capsules 1.8-2.7 x 1.5-1.9 mm, pale brown, obtuse. Seeds 0.9-1.3 x 0.5-0.8 mm, weakly flattened, pale brown, obovoid or narrow and irregular, more or less smooth.
Very similar to Veronica armstrongii and perhaps it might be better placed within that species, possibly at subspecies rank. The main differences are that in comparison to V. armstrongii, V. annulata has stouter branchlets, the leaves are more imbricating (overlapping), more strongly appressed, and their apices typical obtuse, and only rarely mucronate. Cytologically Veronica annulata is diploid (2n = 42) and V. armstrongii tetraploid (2n = 82). Ecologically Veronica annulata appears to be prefer well drained, rocky ground, often at the toe of avalanche debris, or rotational slumps, or in colluvial material. Veronica armstrongii is consistently found in or near permanently wet ground, usually in close association with bog pine (Halocarpus bidwillii).
October - January
December - March
Seeds are wind dispersed (Thorsen et al., 2009).
Easily grown from semi-hardwood cuttings and from fresh seed. An attractive plant for a moist, sunny situation in a free draining soil. A shy flowering species that is intolerant of high humidity and wet climates.
Aside form Kurow (where the species has not been seen for well over 100 years) there is no evidence of any decline. Hebe annulata just seems to be a naturally, extremely uncommon, plant which in the wild is known from only a few widely scattered locations, and from very few mature individuals.
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’.
annulata: From the Latin annulatus ‘ringed, ring-shaped’
Where To Buy
Not commercially available
Fact Sheet Prepared by P.J. de Lange (1 November 2009). Description based on Bayly & Kellow (2006)
References and further reading
Bayly M. and Kellow A. (2006). An Illustrated Guide to New Zealand Hebes.Te Papa Press: Wellington
Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309
NZPCN Fact Sheet citation
Please cite as: de Lange, P.J. (Year at time of access): Veronica annulata Fact Sheet (content continuously updated). New Zealand Plant Conservation Network. https://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora/species/veronica-annulata/ (Date website was queried)