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Plum, American

Rosaceae Prunus sp.

Source: Magness et al. 1971

Bailey, lists 14 species of native plums, several of which have contributed named varieties. Fruit of most species is gathered from the wild for making jams, and jellies. Hybrids of some of these species with the Japanese plums P. triflora are in some cases larger fruited and of a quality superior to that of the wild. However, there are apparently no commercial plantings of these improved kinds, though they are in home gardens, particularly in the Plains States. Various wild plums are called "Sloe."

Two species are in limited commercial production to provide fruit for jam. These are P. maritima Marsh., the Beach plum of coastal areas from New Brunswick to Virginia, and P. subcordata Benth. of California and Oregon. All the native plums have rather small, near globose fruits, produced on small trees or bushes.

Season, bloom to harvest: 70-120 days.

Production in U.S.: No data, possibly 100 tons commercially.

Use: Mainly jelly and jam. Some eaten fresh.

Part of fruit consumed: All except pit in fresh eating. Peel mainly removed after beating in making jelly and jam.

Beach Plum Small farm sustainability through crop diversification and value-added products.