Scotch Broom Winter Care

Scotch Broom is a lovely, deciduous, sometimes evergreen flowering shrub, depending on your growing zone. This multi-stemmed shrub is low fuss, deer and rabbit resistant, and highly tolerant of salt and drought conditions. It is hardy in zones 5-8 and thrives when planted in full-sun locations in well-draining soils. Very little if any extra winter care is needed to keep Scotch Broom performing its best throughout the seasons. 


Protecting Scotch Broom in Winter

If you plant Scotch Broom in a large container, you may need to wrap the container with bubble wrap or burlap to protect it from freeze-and-thaw cycles that could damage the pot. Alternatively, move the container to an area in full sun to protect it from damaging winter winds if it is currently in an exposed position. Otherwise, Scotch Broom is fairly maintenance-free during winter months when planted in the landscape. You can apply a light layer of organic mulch around the root zone to help protect it from harsh winter temperatures. 


Cutting Back Scotch Broom For Winter

Scotch Broom is grown in Hardiness Zones 5-8 and is deciduous in the lower zones and evergreen in the upper growing zones. Pruning for renewal should take place immediately after flowering in summer because it blooms on old wood in the spring. Remove up to 1/3 of the branches to maintain its sturdy shape, promote health and provide air and sunlight to the interior branches. Prune any dead, diseased, and broken branches to the base of the shrub at any time of the year and discard them, ideally before winter sets in. 


Scotch Broom Winter Care in Pots

When Scotch Broom is grown in the ground, it doesn’t need additional protection. When Scotch Broom is planted in a container, the roots are not as insulated. If you live in a colder hardiness zone, it is best to wrap the container in bubble wrap or burlap and move the container to an area away from harsh winter winds. Water the roots thoroughly and deeply before the first frost and apply a light layer of natural mulch around the root zone to help insulate and protect the roots. 

Watering Scotch Broom in Winter

Scotch Broom is winter hardy down to Zone 5 and requires well-draining soil. Before winter arrives, give your Scotch Broom a deep, thorough soaking, making sure the water reaches the entire root zone. If your Scotch Broom is planted in a container, give the roots the same deep watering once before the first frost, and apply a light layer of organic mulch around the base of the shrub to help protect the roots.

Growing Scotch Broom Indoors

Scotch Broom is not generally recommended to be grown indoors due to its large size. Once plants reach about 3 years, they begin producing seed pods that naturally explode, dispersing hundreds of seeds in every direction. Scotch Broom can be highly toxic to young children and pets if ingested. It’s best to plant and enjoy this flowering shrub where it can remain in place because it doesn’t like to be moved. Plant it in full sun in your landscape in well-draining, low-fertility sandy or rocky soils. 

Steps To Care For Scotch Broom in Winter

Scotch Broom is tough and winter hardy down to Zone 5 and can survive a variety of growing conditions. It’s relatively maintenance-free during winter, but it does require well-draining soil, which is especially important during long periods of wet, cold weather. 

Step 1 - Water deeply before the first frost.

Step 2 - Apply a few inches of organic mulch around the root zone for added winter protection.

Step 3 - Remove any damaged, diseased or dead branches before winter and discard them.

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