broom plant

Why is My Broom Plant Dying? (And How To Fix It!)

Broom plants are biologically known as Cytisus. Scotch broom and Sweet broom are the two main types of this plant.

Many gardeners grow broom plants dearly. There are two varieties of this plant, one gives out red flowers and the other one yellow.

Like every other plant, broom plants also can be affected by numerous disorders/diseases. Let’s see why it happens.

Why is my Broom plant dying?

Improper care is the main reason for the death of any plants in the garden. Many factors influence the health and growth of garden plants.

The main factors that influence the health of the broom plant are water and light. The plant also faces some problems when repotting isn’t done right.

When a shrub dies it is most probably caused by a root problem. Root problems may arise due to various reasons.

Root Rot

This is seen in waterlogged or overwatered soils. When there is too much water in the soil, roots can’t absorb sufficient oxygen.

In such situations, the plant experiences dieback, and in severe cases, the plant dies.

Waterlogged conditions pave an easy way for fungi to infect the plants easily.

How to fix: Stop watering the plant for a while. It is advised to replant the plant in fresh soil with good drainage.

You need to water the affected roots.  Cut off the brown, affected parts using sterilized scissors.


Overfeeding your plant with fertilizer can cause a lot of issues. Do you feed your plants often? If yes, you may need to reduce feeding the plant.

Sometimes if you feed neighboring plants, the weed & feed mix may flow to the other plants. This may happen due to rains or uneven watering.

When this happens a lot of fertilizer just sits near the plant. This is not good for the health of the plant.

Signs of Overfeeding

  • When a plant is overfed, the leaves will become yellow and wilt.
  • Browning is seen in leaf margins and tips.
  • Black, Brown, or rotting roots are seen.
  • The growth of the plant is deterred.
  • In severe cases leaves drop off the plant.

How to fix: The only thing you can do to an overfertilized plant is flushing its soil with as much water as you can. This should help flush any excess fertilizer.


Sunlight is essential for the growth of plants. Broom plants love sunlight. They ideally want a good amount of sunlight, be it morning or afternoon.

Make sure your plant is not shaded by another garden tree/shrub.

Do brooms grow in shade?

Yes, broom plants can grow in partial shade. The plant prefers full sun but partial shade won’t harm the plant much.


Water is the lifeline of living organisms. It impacts the growth and health of plants. You need to be very careful when watering your plants.

Overwatering as we talked about before can cause Root rot. This is very harmful to the plant and can kill the plant.

If the plant doesn’t get enough water, it’ll run into a lot of issues too. You can identify such issues early and if you act quickly you can prevent considerable damage.

I water my broom plant once a week with 2 inches of water. If the weather is cold, you can water the plant a little less.

Make a small pit around the broom plant and you’ll be able to know when you need to water the plant, based on soil moisture.

You can check the soil for moisture with your fingers. Water the plant only when the top inch of the soil is dry.


If you replant your plant in a different place, it shocks the plant. This happens when repotting is done wrong.

When the plant is planted first in the garden and then shifted to a pot, the roots take time to adjust. Sometimes they don’t get adjusted to the pot.

Such plants get pot-bound. The roots get the shape of the pot.

Signs: Plants that experience repotting shock may drop leaves or wilt. Sometimes yellowing of the leaves occurs. As the roots can’t absorb water and minerals efficiently the growth stops.

To prevent: You need to tease the roots before repotting. Cytisus likes to spread its roots. So, when repotting make sure to tease the roots and give them breathing room.


Every plant has its own pesky pests that make its life harder. Let’s see what pests feed on the broom plant.

Slugs & Snails

Slugs and Snails can prove harmful to the broom plants. They eat away the leaves and multiply rapidly.

I had snails once. They were crawling everywhere in the branches. I took ’em out by hand and crushed them under my foot. It’s quite satisfying!

You need to get rid of snails/slugs as soon as possible because they stunt the plant’s growth.

How to fix: Throw some slug pellets in the soil where the affected plant stands.


Broom plants are quite often affected by Genista caterpillars. These pests are attracted by the aroma of the plant.

These caterpillars search for food and a place where they can develop further. In this process they have to eat a lot of leaves, damaging the host plant.

Caterpillars can be located easily upon inspection. You can spray insecticides if you want to.

If you want to get rid of them naturally, pick them by hand, and then throw them away in a bucket of soap water.

Wrappin’ it up

You need to take good care of the plant and try to prevent most of these disorders/diseases.

  • Water it regularly but do not overwater. Water once a week(2 inches).
  • Plant it in a place with full sun or partial shade.
  • When repotting do it carefully and tease the roots before placing the plant in soil.
  • Check your plants for any signs of pests regularly. If you see any, try to get rid of them early on.