Family and Genus:- See- LEGUMINOSAE

Common Name:- Spiny broom

Homotypic Synonyms:- Calicotome spinosa var. villosa, Calicotome spinosa
subsp. villosa, Calicotome villosa var. genuina, Genista villosa, Lygoplis
villosum, Spartium villosum.

Meaning:- Calicotome. Meaning unknown.
                  Villosa (L) With long rough hairs, shaggy.
General description:- Erect, rigid, much-branched deciduous shrub. Young
branches terete, striate, densely sericeous-villous, terminating in a strong spine.

1) Up to 50-200 cm tall

1) Trifoliolate.
2) Leaflets, obovate, obtuse, glabrous above, sericeous beneath.

1) Flowers, in short, axillary clusters of 3-10.
2) Calyx, tubular, upper part breaking away at anthesis and lower part remaining as 
    a small cup.
3) Corolla, bright yellow:
    a) standard, 12-20 mm, glabrous.
1) Legume, 20-50 mm, linear-oblong, flattened, dorsal vein conspicuously winged.
    densely patent-villous, becoming reddish when quite ripe.
2) Seeds, (1-)3-8.

Key features:-
1) Flowers, mostly in fascicles of 2-15, or ebracteate racemes.
2) Legumes, villous or sericeous, sometimes sparsely so.

Click here for a glossary of terms used.

Habitat:- An important constituent of open dry shrubby vegetation, scrubland
vegetation, common in coastal areas. 0-700(-1200) m.

Distribution:- W. Med from Spain to Italy, Sicily and Greece. Widespread and and
common on Crete.

Flowering time:- Mar-June.

Photos by:- Steve Lenton