gorse

Fabales > Fabaceae > Ulex europaeus L.
Synonym(s): furze, whin, common gorse

Gorse is an evergreen, perennial shrub native to Europe. Plants can grow from 3-6 ft. (1-2 m) in height. Shoots are covered with reddish-brown to grey hairs. Leaves are spine-like and 0.25-0.75 in. (0.6-1.9 cm) long. Mature shrubs have 1 in. (2.5 cm) long spines on the branches. Flowering occurs from winter to early spring, when shiny, yellow flowers develop in the axils of the leaves. Flowers are 1 in. (2.5 cm) long and fruits are hairy, 0.5-1 in. (1.3-2.5 cm) long pods. Gorse was introduced into North America in the mid-to-late 1800s as an ornamental. Plants invade gravel bars, logged areas and other disturbed areas. Plants cannot tolerate extremely dry areas or areas with extreme temperatures.


Identification, Biology, Control and Management Resources


Selected Images from Invasive.org

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Feature(s); stem
Norman E. Rees, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org
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Feature(s); thorny habit
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Foliage;
George Markin, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Feature(s); spikes
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s);
Eric Coombs, Oregon Department of Agriculture, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s); seed pods
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s); seed pods
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); habit and flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); habit
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); habit
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); habit
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); habit
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s); flowers
Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org
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Seed(s);
Steve Hurst, USDA NRCS PLANTS Database, Bugwood.org
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Diagram or Graphic; Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. Illustrated flora of the northern states and Canada. Vol. 2: 349.
USDA PLANTS Database, USDA NRCS PLANTS Database, Bugwood.org
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Invasive Reference(s):

Check Invasive.org for most current lists.
  • California - Noxious Weed Law
  • California - Invasive Plant Inventory
  • Oregon - Noxious Weed Law
  • Washington - Noxious Weed Law
  • Invasive Plants: Western North America
  • Invasive Plants: Guide to Identification and the Impacts and Control of Common North American Species


External Links


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USDA Forest Service Bugwood University of Georgia