Furze Bush.

Botanical name: 

Genista spinosa.

A wild bush, upon our heaths and by road sides, too common to need much description. The stem is thick, tough, and of a whitish colour, covered with fragments of an irregular kind. The branches are extremely numerous, and spread in such a manner, that when the plant is left to itself, it forms a kind of globular or semi-globular tuft upon the ground. The thorns are very numerous and very sharp; they stand, as it were, one upon another. The leaves are little, and of a pale green, and they fall off so quickly, that for a great part of the year we see the shrub without any. The flowers are yellow and beautiful, and the seeds are contained in pods. The root spreads a great way, and is not easily got up, when the shrub has once thoroughly fixed itself. Every piece of it left in will send up a new plant.

The root and the seeds are used, but neither much. The seeds dried and powdered are astringent, and a proper ingredient in electuaries, among other things of that intention. The bark of the root is used fresh taken up, and is to be given in infusion: It works by urine, and is good against the gravel; but we have so many better things of our own growth for the same purpose, that it is scarce worth while to meddle with it; it loses its virtues by drying.

The Family Herbal, 1812, was written by John Hill.