notpop's picture

Spanish gorse

Observed: 25th May 2013 By: notpopnotpop’s reputation in Plantsnotpop’s reputation in Plantsnotpop’s reputation in Plantsnotpop’s reputation in Plants

low domed gorse,bright yellow in contrast to nearby ochre flowered common gorse.
Appeared grazed/cropped,though that seems to be it's natural habit.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


notpop's picture

rabbit browsing

I now suspect this is Broom,regularly browsed by rabbits ,forming it into a cushion shape they can climb onto.
My question now is,is this Common Broom ?

AlanS's picture

Definitly not Broom

though it may well be a Cytisus of some sort.

For a moment I got excited and was thinking of Genista tinctoria, for which there are ancient East Lothian records, but sadly it isn't that.

Looking up the grid reference I see it is by the power station and I seem to recall plantings of this sort of thing.

I might, possibly, be passing by there tomorrow, might take a look.


lavateraguy's picture

With respect to Genista sericea ...

... you'd need to check that the leaves are really simple - photographs can be misleading. The leaves appear to be clustered, so I could be misreading foliolules as leaves.

landgirl's picture


Another new word! This one took some tracking down, it's not in any of the glossaries in my books. I think, from a paper on nomenclature of leaves on Google, that it means a secondary division of a leaflet?

notpop's picture


It's right down by the south end of the seawall

AlanS's picture


Not there today, but maybe sometime in the next few days (when there will not be a marathon blocking the roads in Musselburgh).

By the way, I am now adding agreement to your original ID of Genista hispanica. I sort of knew it but I was not spending any more time on it last night. There are too many flowers in the terminal clusters for G. sericea, and in any case, photo 1 shows the plant is spiny (the spines too low down on the plant to show in photo 2). I have checked the account in the European Garden Flora and it fits well, inluding the standard/keel relative lengths. The more or less appressed hairs on the stems and leaf undersides make it subsp. occidentalis, which is apparently the more common of the two subspecies in cultivation.

Do you think this counts as wild?


notpop's picture

self seeded

Judging by what I know of the land use history of where it is,I would say it is probably self seeded,which is 'wild' in my book.
Would a low cushion be the natural habitat of Spanish Gorse,or would you suspect rabbits/bonzai ?