Citiso, Broom of the charcoal burners - Cytisus scoparius

Citiso, Broom of the charcoal burners - Cytisus scoparius

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Genus of 25-30 deciduous shrubs, which can reach, depending on the species, even 3 meters; they come from Europe, Asia Minor and Africa. The broom of the charcoal burners or Cytisus scoparius, can be found in many areas of Italy and is a species with a very wide range, as it can be found both at the sea and in the mountains even if it is often different varieties of the same species. Easy to grow, in nature it is a plant that loves sunny areas with calcareous soil and that grows well even where water is not abundant. In the garden and for the ornamental greenery, particular varieties of broom are used, mostly selected for their bearing and the color of their flowers. In fact, ornamental green brooms can have flowers of different colors such as red, orange, yellow or pink. The habit of the gorse can also change a lot from species to species and it passes from the low and balloon-like habit of the vivavio citisus to the bushy, erect habit and from the development up to 3 meters of the wild gorse. One of the most frequent uses of brooms is in rock gardens, where in addition to resisting without problems, they are also able to give a little substance and a little color with their posture.

Cytisus scoparius">Cultivation

Cytisus scoparius is an easy plant to grow. They are planted in March - April, or in October, using plants grown in pots, as if the roots are not wrapped in earthen bread the citiso bears transplantation badly. The soil must be well drained, fertile and in full sun. The calcareous soils are ideal for gorse but they are also good even in richer soils, the important thing is not to water these plants excessively because in the long run they can suffer from water stagnation.

Cytisus scoparius">Multiplication

The species of citiso they propagate easily, sowing in pots or terrines in the period of April. The seedlings are repotted, one by one, in pots of about 10 cm which are buried outdoors. They are permanently planted in October. However, if we do not have the time and desire to multiply plants via seed, we can use other methods of multiplication by exploiting the agamic multiplication of plants, for example by cuttings. The ideal period to carry out this operation are the months of May and June in which we have to cut one or more branches from a broom plant, remove most of the leaves to leave only a few and then put the cuttings with the part of the branch upwards. interior of a mixture of peat and sand. Every 3-4 days, when the soil is dry we will have to remember to water it and after a few days the cutting of broom of the charcoal burners it will begin to emit the first roots.


Most Cytisus scoparius species do not require regular pruning. When this is necessary it is advisable to do it after flowering, removing most of the branches of the previous year. The pruning of the broom must be done in a decisive way and must be cut leaving roughly a quarter of the length of the branches that are present on the plant. Pruning of the broom of the charcoal burners it must be decided because they are plants that react very well to cutting and that if they are not pruned every year, they end up over the years not producing many flowers. For this reason it is good to remember every year, after flowering and before winter arrives, to prune the brooms in the garden.

Most common problems

Cytisus suffers from chlorosis which manifests itself with the yellowing of the leaves.

C. albus - Cytisus multifloris">Most common species C. albus - Cytisus multifloris">C. albus

Also known as Cytisus multifloris, it grows spontaneously in Spain, Portugal and north-west Africa. It is a bushy species with a diameter and height of about 2.5 meters. The leaves are of

gray-green color, the upper ones smaller, the lower ones large and trifoliate. The flowers are white, about 2 cm long and bloom in

April or May.

Citiso, Broom of the charcoal burners - Cytisus scoparius: C. battandieri

Widespread species in Morocco. Up to 5 meters high, it is an imposing species with

trifoliate leaves, large and silvery. The golden yellow flowers bloom in May or June and are gathered in erect or curved racemes.

It is one of the most sensitive to cold species, therefore cultivation in areas where the winter reaches particularly low temperatures is not recommended.

Video: Cytisus battandieri, Pineapple Broom