Butcher's-broom - Ruscus aculeatus


    Butcher's-broom is a bushy sub-shrub to 75cm, with glossy, lance-shaped cladophylls 2.5cm in length that give the appearance of stiff, spine-tipped leaves. The flowers are small with greeny-white petals.

    Identification difficulty

    Dry shady places such as woodland and scrub. It is frequently grown in gardens, and may become established where discarded or deliberately planted, or where bird-sown.

    When to see it

    It flowers early in the year, followed by glossy red berries on female plants.

    Life History

    A dioecious, evergreen, rhizomatous shrub. It reproduces vegetatively by creeping rhizomes, and by seed, which may be bird-sown. 

    UK Status

    Widespread but local in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Uncommon in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 2 of the 617 tetrads.

    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    UK Map