Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Cytisus, Lower East Side

I noticed that one of the bars on Allen and Stanton has planters full of Cytisus scoparius, or Scotch Broom:

Such a cool-looking plant, at least when it's in bloom. The common name is pretty self-explanatory; the rigid stems have historically been used for broom brushes.

I was curious to find out more about Scotch Broom and stumbled on its profile on botanical.com.

There was too much for me to digest and condense for my entry (plus, I'm tired today), but I did learn the plant triggers some pretty intense physiological reactions. It's used as a cathartic and diuretic, and some of its other side effects made me think that Scotch Broom is the perfect plant for the LES. You see, apparently shepherds would watch sheep eat the broom and note that the sheep would first become excited, and then become "stupefied." Sorta the same thing that happens around here all weekend and most weeknights.

Hey, not that there's anything wrong with that.

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