A very distinctive evergreen shrub, often found on the coast (where we saw loads of it o our weekend in Hampshire).
The Gorse is a relative of Broom, and belongs to a sub-family of the peas.
Gorse has spined leaves and bright yellow flowers which smell of coconut. It has a very long flowering season, sometimes all year round, which gave birth to the old country saying:
"When Gorse is out of blossom, kissing is out of fashion".
Gorse, because of its thick, spined nature, provides cover for nests of birds such as the Stonechat (which we saw many of on our walk around the coast) and the Dartford Warbler (which I've yet to see, or indeed look for).
Gorse flowers are edible, and can be used in salads or tea, or to make a non-grape based wine.
In Devon, Gorse is known as Furse, also the clan badge of the MacLellan clan in Scotland.