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Hairy-fruited Broom

Cytisus striatus

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Fabaceae (Pea)
Also in this family:
Alpine Milk-vetch, Alsike Clover, Birdsfoot, Birdsfoot Clover, Bird's-foot Trefoil, Bithynian Vetch, Bitter Vetch, Black Broom, Black Medick, Bladder Senna, Broad Bean, Broad-leaved Everlasting Pea, Bur Medick, Burrowing Clover, Bush Vetch, Clustered Clover, Common Broom, Common Gorse, Common Laburnum, Common Restharrow, Common Vetch, Crimson Clover, Crown Vetch, Dragon's Teeth, Dwarf Gorse, Dyer's Greenweed, False Acacia, Fine-leaved Vetch, Fodder Vetch, Garden Lupin, Garden Pea, Goat's Rue, Grass Vetchling, Greater Bird's-foot Trefoil, Hairy Bird's-foot Trefoil, Hairy Greenweed, Hairy Tare, Hairy Vetchling, Haresfoot Clover, Hop Trefoil, Horseshoe Vetch, Hungarian Vetch, Kidney Vetch, Knotted Clover, Large Trefoil, Lesser Trefoil, Lucerne, Marsh Pea, Meadow Vetchling, Narrow-leaved Bird's-foot Trefoil, Narrow-leaved Everlasting Pea, Narrow-leaved Vetch, Nootka Lupin, Norfolk Everlasting Pea, Orange Birdsfoot, Petty Whin, Purple Milk-vetch, Purple Oxytropis, Red Clover, Reversed Clover, Ribbed Melilot, Rough Clover, Russell Lupin, Sainfoin, Scorpion Senna, Scottish Laburnum, Sea Clover, Sea Pea, Sickle Medick, Slender Bird's-foot Trefoil, Slender Tare, Slender Trefoil, Small Melilot, Small Restharrow, Smooth Tare, Spanish Broom, Spanish Gorse, Spiny Restharrow, Spotted Medick, Spring Vetch, Strawberry Clover, Suffocated Clover, Sulphur Clover, Tall Melilot, Toothed Medick, Tree Lupin, Tuberous Pea, Tufted Vetch, Twin-headed Clover, Two-flowered Everlasting Pea, Upright Clover, Upright Vetch, Western Clover, Western Gorse, White Broom, White Clover, White Lupin, White Melilot, Wild Liquorice, Wood Vetch, Yellow Oxytropis, Yellow Vetch, Yellow Vetchling, Zigzag Clover
Semi-evergreen shrub
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
2.5 metres tall
Parks, roadsides.

Yellow, 5 petals
Yellow, pea-like flowers. The flowers are slightly smaller and paler than those of the similar looking Common Broom (Cytisus scoparius).
Fruit pods, covered in white hairs. Common Broom does not have a covering of white hairs.
Small leaves with 1 to 3 leaflets. Each leaflet is up to 1cm in length. The stems are 10-ridged.
Other Names:
French Broom, Portuguese Broom, Spanish Broom, Striated Broom, Striped Broom.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Cytisus striatus, also known as Portuguese broom or striped broom, is a species of flowering plant in the legume family. It is native to the Mediterranean region and is widely cultivated in other parts of the world as an ornamental plant. It is a shrub that grows to about 2 meters in height and has thin, wiry stems with narrow, green leaves and clusters of small, yellow flowers. It is known for its ability to tolerate drought and poor soil conditions, making it a popular choice for landscaping in dry regions. It is also valued for its attractive appearance and ability to attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies.


Hairy-fruited Broom (Cytisus striatus) is a small shrub that belongs to the pea family (Fabaceae). It is native to the Mediterranean region and is widely distributed in many countries including Portugal, Spain, France, and Italy. The plant is known for its beautiful yellow flowers that bloom in the spring, making it a popular ornamental plant.

Hairy-fruited Broom is a deciduous shrub that grows to about 3 meters in height. It has thin branches with green leaves that are oval in shape and about 2-3 cm long. The shrub produces clusters of bright yellow flowers that are about 1 cm wide. The flowers have a sweet fragrance that attracts a variety of pollinators such as bees and butterflies.

After flowering, Hairy-fruited Broom produces seed pods that are hairy and brown in color. These pods contain seeds that can be used for propagation, making it an easy plant to grow. The shrub is also known for its ability to adapt to a variety of soils, making it a versatile and low-maintenance addition to any garden.

In addition to its ornamental qualities, Hairy-fruited Broom has several medicinal properties. It is believed to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that make it useful in treating a variety of ailments. The plant has also been used as a natural remedy for coughs, colds, and other respiratory problems.

Hairy-fruited Broom is a hardy plant that can tolerate drought and can be grown in full sun or partial shade. It is also resistant to pests and diseases, making it a great choice for gardeners who want to avoid the use of chemical pesticides.

Aside from its ornamental and medicinal qualities, Hairy-fruited Broom has also been used for various other purposes throughout history. In ancient times, the plant was used for its strong fibers, which were used to make rope and cloth. Today, the plant is still used for landscaping and erosion control due to its ability to quickly establish itself and form dense thickets.

In some regions, Hairy-fruited Broom is considered an invasive species. This is because it spreads easily and can outcompete native vegetation, leading to loss of biodiversity. To prevent this, it is important to keep the plant under control and not allow it to spread into natural areas.

In cultivation, Hairy-fruited Broom can be propagated from seeds or cuttings. To grow from seed, simply plant the seeds in a well-drained soil in the spring. To grow from cuttings, take stem cuttings in the summer and root them in a moist soil mixture. Once established, the shrub requires little maintenance and can be pruned to control its size and shape.

In terms of design, Hairy-fruited Broom can be used as a specimen plant or as a hedge. When grown as a specimen plant, it can be used as a focal point in a garden, or as a backdrop for smaller flowering plants. When grown as a hedge, it can be trimmed to create a dense barrier or used to define garden beds and borders.

It's also worth noting that Hairy-fruited Broom can provide valuable habitat for wildlife. The yellow flowers are a source of nectar for pollinators, while the seed pods provide food for small mammals and birds. In addition, the dense thickets formed by the shrub can provide shelter and nesting sites for birds and other small animals.

Gardeners who are looking to incorporate Hairy-fruited Broom into their landscapes should consider its mature size and growth habit when choosing a planting location. The shrub can grow up to 3 meters tall and 2 meters wide, so it is best planted in a location where it has room to spread and grow. It is also important to consider the plant's sun and soil requirements, as well as its water needs, when choosing a location.

In addition to its ornamental and ecological benefits, Hairy-fruited Broom also has cultural significance. In some cultures, it is associated with good luck and is used in rituals and ceremonies. In others, it is considered a symbol of strength and resilience.

In conclusion, Hairy-fruited Broom (Cytisus striatus) is a valuable and versatile shrub that is well worth considering for your garden. With its bright yellow flowers, low-maintenance requirements, and ecological benefits, it is sure to add value to your landscape in a variety of ways. Whether you are looking to create a beautiful garden, support wildlife, or tap into the plant's cultural significance, Hairy-fruited Broom is a great choice.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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