How to Care for a Broom Plant

Overview

The broom plant (Cytisus scoparius) grows as a hardy, deciduous flowering shrub. Thin branches arch upward, reaching maximum heights of 6 feet. In the spring, the shrub becomes covered with small, bright yellow flowers. Also known as Scotch broom, this prolific bloomer makes an attractive choice for home gardeners who want a showy, low-maintenance shrub. Unfortunately, Scotch broom also spreads rapidly and may become invasive. According to the University of Connecticut, there are more than 100 cultivars of cytisus scoparius. Purchase a hybrid if you want to grow this plant.

Step 1

Expose your broom plant to a minimum of six hours of sunlight per day. The broom plant loves to flower, but it needs full sunlight to do so. Eight to 12 hours a day is ideal.

Step 2

Amend the soil if it is very wet and heavy, such as clay soil. The broom plant thrives in dry, sandy soils. Work sand into the soil to a depth of 12 inches around the broom plant.

Step 3

Water the broom plant only twice per month, and only if there is no rain. Deep, slow waterings are best. Use a soaking or drip hose to let water seep into the ground.

Step 4

Rake fallen leaves away from the plant in autumn. The leaves could harbor fungi, which can overwinter in the soil at the base of the plant and infect it in the spring. Adding a 2-inch layer of mulch in the fall protects the broom plant from frost heave.

Things You'll Need

  • Sand
  • Shovel or trowel
  • Soaking or drip hose
  • Rake
  • Mulch

References

  • University of Connecticut: Cytisus scoparius
  • Oregon State University Extension: Scotch Broom
  • USDA Plant Profile: Cytisus scoparius
Keywords: scotch broom plant, broom plant care, Cytisus scoparius

About this Author

April Sanders has been a professional writer since 1998. Previously, she worked as an educator and currently writes academic research content for EBSCO publishing and elementary reading curriculum for Compass Publishing. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in social psychology from the University of Washington and a master's degree in information sciences and technology in education from Mansfield University.