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Sister Redhead® Scotch Broom

Cytisus scoparius

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Sister Redhead® Scotch Broom

Discover More Information On Sister Redhead® Scotch Broom

Introducing the dazzling Sister Redhead® Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius), a captivating deciduous shrub renowned for its fiery red blooms that come alive in the spring season. Aptly named, this scotch broom is a true spectacle when in full bloom, with each petite red flower accented with a touch of yellow – reminiscent of a bird's beak – that enhances its vibrant hue.

This particular shade of deep, unforgettable red makes it a garden showstopper, especially when harmoniously paired with spring-blooming bulbs like daffodils, tulips, and crocus. Not only does this plant offer visual splendor, but it also flourishes in sunny, dry conditions, similar to its bulb companions, making them a perfect duo both visually and horticulturally. After its flowering phase, the Sister Redhead® transitions into a maze of wiry green stems laden with minuscule leaves, offering a unique textural display. It's worth noting that this plant is not recommended for the Northwest.

Plant Attributes

The Sister Redhead® Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius) is a visual delight, with its radiant red blooms that burst forth each spring. Each flower is uniquely adorned with a touch of yellow, resembling a tiny beak, offering a striking contrast that elevates its vibrant hue. Beyond its captivating aesthetics, this shrub is a paragon of resilience, effortlessly withstanding drought and saline conditions while also deterring deer.

Standing at a medium height of 3 to 4 feet, its upright, broom-like stature makes it a favorite for adding textural diversity to gardens. While it flourishes in sunny, dry settings, particularly in hardiness zones 5 to 8, it's relatively low-maintenance, requiring just an occasional trim post-bloom. Versatile in its landscaping uses, the Sister Redhead® can transition from garden beds to focal points, demonstrating its adaptability and allure.

Landscape Use

  1. Foundation Planting: Given its moderate size, the Sister Redhead® can be placed alongside buildings or homes to provide structure and beauty without overwhelming the architecture. Its vibrant red blooms can accentuate the appearance of homes and offer a welcoming touch at entries.
  2. Borders and Edging: With its upright growth, it can serve as a distinctive border, demarcating pathways or separating different sections of a garden. Its brilliant spring display will make pathways come alive.
  3. Mass Plantings: For an impressive visual impact, consider planting several Sister Redhead® Scotch Brooms en masse. The collective display of red blooms can create a spectacular focal point in larger gardens.
  4. Mixed Beds: This scotch broom pairs beautifully with other spring-blooming plants. Combine it with bulbs like daffodils, tulips, and crocus for a harmonious blend of colors and textures.
  5. Containers: If space is limited or if you're aiming for a more controlled growth, the Sister Redhead® can be planted in large containers. This way, it can adorn patios, terraces, or balconies, bringing its beauty closer to living spaces.
  6. Rock Gardens: Given its tolerance for drier conditions and its love for well-drained soils, the Sister Redhead® fits perfectly into rock gardens. Its slender, wiry stems and unique blooms offer a pleasant contrast to the ruggedness of rocks.
  7. Wildlife Gardens: Its blooms can attract pollinators, making it an excellent addition to gardens designed to draw in beneficial insects.
  8. Textural Accent: Its wiry stems and small leaves, especially after the blooming period, can serve as a unique textural element in gardens, contrasting well with broader-leaved plants.
  9. Slope and Erosion Control: Its root system can help stabilize slopes, making it a functional choice for areas prone to erosion.

Planting & Care


  1. Location: Choose a location that receives full sun, as this plant thrives in sunny conditions. If you're in an area with particularly hot summers, a spot with afternoon shade might be beneficial.
  2. Soil: The Sister Redhead® prefers well-drained soil. Sandy or gritty soils are ideal. If your soil is particularly heavy or clayey, consider amending it with organic matter or sand to improve drainage.
  3. Spacing: Given its growth potential of 3-4 feet in both height and width, ensure each plant is spaced about 3-4 feet apart. This allows adequate air circulation and room for growth.
  4. Planting Depth: Dig a hole that is twice the width of the plant's root ball and just as deep. Place the plant so that the top of the root ball is level with the ground surface. Fill in with soil and firm it down gently.
  5. Watering: After planting, water the plant thoroughly to help settle the soil around the roots.


  1. Watering: This plant is drought-tolerant, but it's essential to water it regularly during the first growing season to help establish a deep, extensive root system. Once established, reduce frequency, watering only during prolonged dry spells.
  2. Fertilization: Generally, the Sister Redhead® doesn't require much fertilization. However, if your soil is particularly poor, a light application of a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring can be beneficial.
  3. Pruning: Post blooming, you can give the plant a light trim to maintain its shape and remove any spent flower stems. This helps encourage new growth and a tidier appearance.
  4. Mulching: A light mulch layer can help retain soil moisture and suppress weeds. Ensure the mulch doesn't touch the base of the plant to prevent rot.
  5. Pest and Disease: Sister Redhead® is notably deer-resistant. However, keep an eye out for common pests such as aphids. For diseases, ensure good air circulation and avoid waterlogged soils to prevent issues like root rot.
  6. Winter Care: In colder zones, although the plant is hardy, it can benefit from a light layer of mulch applied around its base to protect the roots from extreme cold.

Additional Information

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Sister Redhead® Scotch Broom


Plant Features

  • Watering Needs: Low – Thrives in drier conditions but water occasionally during extreme heat.‍
  • Botanical Pronunciation: SIT-i-sus sko-PAH-ri-us‍
  • Plant type: Shrub‍Deciduous/evergreen: Deciduous‍
  • Growth rate: Moderate‍
  • Average landscape size: Moderate growing; reaches 3-4 ft. tall and wide.‍
  • Special features:Dramatic Spring Bloom, Easy Care, Deer Resistant
  • Foliage color: Green‍
  • Blooms: Mid Spring‍
  • Flower color: Red with a hint of yellow‍
  • Flower attributes: Showy Flowers, Unique Pea-shaped Bloom‍
  • Garden style: Cottage, Rustic, Contemporary‍
  • Design Ideas: The Sister Redhead® is not just for garden beds; its upright, broom-like silhouette makes it a perfect choice for borders, mass plantings, or as a focal point. Paired beautifully with spring-blooming bulbs like daffodils and tulips, its vibrant red blooms are a showstopper. This shrub is versatile enough to fit in various garden themes, be it cottage or contemporary. Especially effective in sunny, well-drained spots.‍
  • Companion Plants: Daffodil (Narcissus); Tulip (Tulipa); Crocus (Crocus); Garden Sage (Salvia); Lavender (Lavandula)

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