These are often called genista, but cytisus is the correct name, of which the beautiful tree or shrub, laburnum, is one. They are profuse blooming, branching evergreens. Small plants in 4 and 5-inch pots are most useful, but a limited number of the larger plants are very fine for decoration. Their bright yellow color, the plants covered with flowers, makes them very attractive, but we do not consider them at all a good house plant, the leaves and flowers soon dropping, and the reason must be the dry air of the room.
Cytisus in Basket.
Any ordinary loam with a little rotten manure will grow them. They are sometimes troubled with red spider, but never when they are kept syringed during the summer.
They root readily from the young growths in February and are pinched and grown on by shifting during summer. We never plant them out because they lift badly. Keep them under glass and keep them plunged on a bench where there is very little shade. To make compact, little plants they want their strongest shoots often stopped, the last stopping or clipping should not be later than December. In winter they can be kept in a very cool house; 40 degrees at night will be plenty.
They are of most use as an Easter plant and if not kept very cool will be too early for Easter unless that festival comes on an early date. Unsold plants can be sheared off and if kept warm and syringed will soon make a fine growth, and when shifted they can be plunged outside in summer and will want at intervals an occasional clipping. They can be made very round, compact, handsome bushes or allowed to grow more freely if you wish.
Canariensis is a trifle darker than racemosus, but the latter is the better grower and better plant.