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Cytisus scoparius ssp. scoparius
common name: Common Broom
synonyms: Sarothamnus scoparius, Spartium scoparium
brown & green
poisonous or irritant
dry soil, moist soil, sandy soil, coastal
preferred soil pH: neutral-acid
minimum temp: -25°C
USDA zone: 5 to 9
Deciduous shrub of variable habit and size, with erect to arching green stems and small trifoliate leaves. The green shoots combined with relatively insignificant looking leaves give the impression of the plant being evergreen. Profuse pea-like golden yellow flowers in spring and early summer, later followed by pods that burst open to distribute the black seeds.
Well drained soil in full sun. Thrives in poor acid soils, lime-tolerant but dislikes shallow chalky soil. Often found naturally on dry sandy soils near the coast or on heathlands.
Resents disturbance and best planted when small.
Prune after flowering by shortening all young green growth by up to two-thirds. Avoid cutting back into old wood as it is reluctant to re-shoot.
From seed or cuttings
Valuble ornamental shrub, particularly useful for mass planting in large landscape projects. Selected cultivars are more commonly used for gardens.
Native throughout Western Europe, including Britain.