Plums

Plums

Plums are really delicious fruits that you can eat immediately after harvesting. You can also make crumbles, pies, and jams from the plums. You can even buy cultivars that don’t need much space to grow.   

Growing Plums

  • Use horticulture fleece to cover the fan-trained trees on frosty nights.
  • Make sure the fleece is away from the flowers. You can use canes to ensure it. 
  • Thin out the plants when the fruit has set. It will ease congestion, improve ventilation and fruit size.  
  • Prop up the branches in summer. Otherwise, there’re chances for branches to snap due to fruit weight. 
  • Feed and water the plants timely to enhance the yield.
  • Apply nitrogen fertiliser to set heavy crops
  • Spread the manure in mid-spring when the trees are established. It will make the soil moisture-retentive, prevent the weeds’ development, and enhance the nitrogen level of the soil.
  • Supplement the soil with non-organic fertiliser and dried poultry pellets
  • Feed the plants with high potash fertiliser in late winter.

Pruning

Summer and spring is the perfect time to prune the plums. You can prune and train the plums using three different methods: pyramids, bush and fan. 

Never prune the plums in mid-late autumn and dormant season. Otherwise, the risk of bacterial canker and silver leaf disease will increase.  

Planting

Dormant season in early spring and late winter is the best to plant the plum trees. Container grown trees don’t establish like the bare-root plants. You can use either training wires or stakes based on the cultivar you have chosen.

Several cultivars are available in the market. Some of them are self-infertile, and others are self-fertile. You can use these cultivars as dessert as well as for cooking. If you have just a limited outdoor space, you can choose a dual-purpose cultivar.  

Plums need moisture-retentive soil. Therefore, you must plant the plums in loamy soils and good clay. However, the soil for plums should be well-drained.  

Here’re some tips for planting the plums.

  • Feed the shallow and chalky soils with bulky organic matter before planting the plums
  • Ensure that pots are of appropriate size when you want to plant the plums in containers.
  • Position the trees in the sunny and sheltered position away from the windy sites and frosts pockets. Otherwise, there is the risk of frost damage to the flowers.

Harvesting Plums

Plums taste best when they are allowed to ripen on the tree. You can squeeze the fruits gently to know if they are ready to pick or not. If they feel soft, it means they are ripe and ready to harvest.

You can pick the Plums several times. While harvesting the fruits make sure it doesn’t get damaged. After harvesting, you can eat the fruits immediately, freeze them or preserve them. 

plums

Common problems

Silver leaf

In this disease, plant leaves become silver. Moreover, the branches of the plants appear red when cut. 

Remedy

Prune the plants in early spring or from June end to August end

Plum maggots

The larvae of plum sawfly tunnel and plum moth enter the fruits, rendering them untasteful. In addition, the plum moth deforms the fruits, causing them to fall in summer.

Remedy

  • Identify the damaged fruitlets in May.
  • Remove the damaged fruitlets before the larvae enter the soil
  • Capture the male moths with Pheromone

Brown rot

It is a fungal disease. It appears as brown rot in fruits or blemishes on the fruit surface. The condition gets worse during the wet summers.

Remedy

Remove and destroy the rotten fruits. Otherwise, the disease will spread throughout the plant.

Wasps

Wasp can damage any tree fruit. The higher sugar content attracts the wasps to the plant, damaging the fruits and threatening gardeners.

Remedy

  • Trap the wasps using hang wasps. You can hang these hang wasps in the trees.
  • Make sure the overripe fruits don’t fall on the ground due to winds.

Take a look at Delicious Magazine for a couple of dozen recipes using plums

For more information or assistance with this article, or if you want to add something that you feel is relevant, we would love to hear from you via the Contact Us page.

08/14/2021 | Fruit | 0 Comments

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