SEARCH AND WILDFLOWER HOME PAGE     BLUE/PURPLE FLOWERS      CONTACT US



Besseya alpina

Veronica besseya (Alpine Kitten Tails. Alpine Coral Drops).
Synonyms: Besseya alpina, Synthyris alpina.
Plantaginaceae (Plantain Family)

Alpine. Tundra.  Summer.
Placer Gulch, July 17, 2011.

Veronica besseya

Veronica besseya
(Alpine Kitten Tails. Alpine Coral Drops).

Synonyms: Besseya alpina, Synthyris alpina.
Plantaginaceae (Plantain Family)

Alpine. Tundra.  Summer.
Colorado Trail near Stony Pass, August 26, 2019.

Besseya alpina
Veronica besseya (Alpine Kitten Tails. Alpine Coral Drops). Synonyms: Besseya alpina, Synthyris alpina.
Plantaginaceae (Plantain Family)

Alpine. Tundra.  Summer.
Placer Gulch, July 17, 2011.

Veronica besseya is a minute and exotic addition to the alpine tundra.  It grows from 2-8 inches tall and can be quite hairy, as shown here, or glabrous (not hairy).  As the map below indicates, Veronica besseya is found in just a few western states.

Veronica besseya is one of the many plants that Charles Parry discovered for science.  He did so in 1861 in the "headwaters of South Clear Creek [Colorado]".  The plant was at first named Synthyris alpina by Asa Gray. Per Axel Rydberg renamed it Besseya alpina in 1903. In 2004, Albach, Martínez-Ortega, Fischer, and Chase proposed that all Besseya species belong in the genus Veronica. See JSTOR

Click to see Veronica ritteriana and to read about the meaning of the genus name.

Besseya alpina

Veronica besseya (Alpine Kitten Tails. Alpine Coral Drops). Synonyms: Besseya alpina, Synthyris alpina.
Plantaginaceae (Plantain Family)

Alpine. Tundra.  Summer.
Placer Gulch, July 17, 2011.

Flowers have faded and seeds are beginning to form.

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color Key

Species present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Besseya alpina

Range map for Veronica besseya