How to Grow Cytisus Battandieri Yellow Tail - Pineapple Broom
Cytisus battandieri is often more commonly and easily referred to as pineapple broom and is a medium-sized, deciduous shrub native to Morocco.
The variety 'Yellow Tail' is a very attractive shrub with grey-green leaves which are silky when young and in June, this shrub produces a mass of erect and densely filled racemes of bright yellow flowers which are pea-like in shape. The flowers, as may be expected from its common name pineapple broom, do smell strongly of pineapples.
Despite originating from Morocco, pineapple broom has proved to be quite hardy in most parts of the country and is able to tolerate temperatures down to -10C to –5C. In mild winters this shrub can even become semi-evergreen, retaining, although rather sparsely, its foliage throughout the winter.
Pineapple broom can be grown in almost any soil provided it is well drained and actually thrives in poor acidic soil, with clay soils best avoided! They require full sun, pineapple broom can be planted in an open but not exposed position and cannot tolerate exposure to cold winds or be waterlogged.
Compact and with a bushy habit, pineapple broom is a very desirable shrub, ideal for flower beds and borders, Cottage and informal gardens. Grown against a sunny wall, and in city and courtyard gardens, planting near patios or pathways will allow you to enjoy the attractive flowers and their fragrance over the summer months.
Pineapple broom has been given the Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit.
Note: All parts of this plant along with the seeds are toxic when ingested.
How to Grow and Care for Cytisus battandieri 'Yellow Tail.'
Pineapple broom can be grown in any moist soil provided it is well drained, although clay is best avoided, this shrub does need full sun. Shelter from cold wind is paramount and although pineapple broom can be planted in open positions, they must not be exposed to the elements.
If you have purchased a container-grown shrub, this can be planted at any time of the year although autumn is always best, provided the soil is neither frozen or waterlogged.
It is important to prepare the planting area well first, removing all weeds and any other debris. Shrubs need to be planted to the same depth as they were in their containers so dig a hole to the required depth and at least twice as wide as the container. Gently tease out some of the roots and then place in the centre of the planting hole.
Backfill with the removed soil, carefully firming in as you go to secure the roots and to get rid of any air pockets followed by a good watering in.
If you are planting in spring, summer or during any dry weather then you will need to water well and regularly for the first few months and until the plant has become established but always keep an eye on your young shrub and increase watering should this become necessary during any hot or dry periods. Shrubs that have been planted in autumn may only require a little watering, again this will be dependent on the type of fall we are experiencing!
For the first couple of years, it will be important to keep the area around your shrub free of any competing weeds or grass and this is best done by placing a thick layer of bark chips around your shrub, avoiding the stem. Apart from keeping the weeds at bay, this will also help the soil to retain moisture.
How to Prune Cytisus battandieri 'Yellow Tail.'
Although pineapple broom does not require regular pruning, you may wish to give it a general tidy up and remove any overcrowded, damaged or diseased branches. This task should always be undertaken during the dormant season.
How to Propagate Cytisus battandieri 'Yellow Tail.'
Propagation can be by either taking semi-ripe cuttings in the late summer or early autumn or by hardwood cuttings taken in mid-winter.
Pests and Diseases
'Yellow Tail' is generally pest free but it can be susceptible to the honey disease fungus.
Soil: Most soils provided it is well drained, although clay is best avoided
Position: Full sun in a sheltered position
Height & Spread: 13ft x 13ft
Flowering Period: Summer
If you live in Kingston, Richmond, Barnes, Putney, Wandsworth, Morden, Mortlake, East Sheen and the surrounding areas, Cytisus battandieri 'Yellow Tail' can be purchased directly from Wyevale Garden Centres in Lower Morden, SM4, Syon Park, TW8, and Osterley, TW7, see link below.
Wyevale Garden Centres are also located in various other parts of the country, just use their postcode search box to find a centre near to you.