When visiting the glens of Perthshire and Angus in May and June, one cannot fail to be struck by the bright yellow of the Gorse (Ulex europaeus), sometimes known as Whin or Furze.  Gorse is generally regarded as a weed which readily colonises uncultivated ground, so is often seen on roadsides and where ground has been disturbed.  Its spiky leaves and dense growth habit mean that it was sometimes used as a hedging plant, and could even be fed to livestock if bruised beforehand.  There is an old tradition that ‘when the gorse is not flowering, kissing is out of fashion’.   Also seen in the glens is Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius), related to Gorse, which has similar bright yellow flowers, but longer and less spiky leaves.  This was sometimes cultivated in broom parks, with the branches serving as fuel, and the foliage as thatching material or cattle fodder