This section is from the book "Wayside And Woodland Blossoms", by Edward Step. Also available from Amazon: Wayside And Woodland Blossoms: A Guide To British Wild-Flowers.
The Broom is sadly liable to be confounded with the Furze by the non-botanical rambler, chiefly, we believe, because of the similarity of the flowers and the partiality of both for heaths and commons. There are, however, several points of difference between them; but one is sufficient for a rough-and-ready distinction. The Furze began life with a few leaves similar to those of the Broom, but as it grew it put forth sharp spines instead of ordinary leaves, until it became more difficult to handle than any hedgehog. The Broom rarely puts on any prickles at all, and its compound leaves, of three small leaflets, may be seen as in the illustration, close to the pliant stems.
Cytisus scoparius. - Leguminosae. -