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Plum Variety Descriptions


Early Magic –The early magic ripens in mid-July. Fruit size is medium.  This medium sized fruit is purplish-red and covered with waxy bloom giving it a bluish cast. The flesh is amber-yellow, firm, juicy, sweet and very good tasting.

Early Golden - The early golden is one of the first plums of the season, ripening in the second part of July.  Similar to shiro plum, it is small to medium in size, firmer than the shiro, mild tasting, sweet and does not stick to the pit.  The early golden is an excellent choice to satisfy your early season sweet tooth.

Methley – One of the first out of the orchard in mid-July, this is well known variety that has been present on the market stands for a long time. This fruit is harvested with a green shadow, but ripens to a vibrant purple with a deep red flesh at market.  This small round fruit is the perfect pop-able sweet treat on a hot July day.

Shiro – The shiro needs no introduction as it is the most well-known of the Japanese varieties.  Be sure to handle this petite yellow plum with care as they bruise easily.  Smooth and sweet, you will surely encounter the shiro at famers markets in late July. 

Santa Rosa – The Santa Rosa is a beautiful, large, red fruits with gold flesh. It is a sweet plum that is delicious when eaten fresh, cooked or canned. It is ready the first week of August.  

Starking Delicious – This new variety is gaining acclaim for its great taste and ease of growing.  It is disease resistant making it a very environmentally friendly option.  Ripening in the second week of August, this deep red Japanese plum is a delicious summer treat.  

Ozark Premier - The Ozark premier is a large, plump, roundish plum.  The skin is red with a waxy bloom.  Its firm flesh is yellow, fine-grained, and juicy.  The Ozark premier will appease your appetite with its sweet, great taste.  

Burbank – The Burbank is a well-known old variety.  The fruit is medium-sized and has attractive orange-red color that covers most of the surface with a base color that is amber-yellow.   The flesh is yellow, fine-grained, firm and juicy, sweet and very good tasting.   The peak harvest is in the second part of August-beginning of September

Redheart – you would be fortunate to find the redheart at the farmers market in mid-august.  A finicky producer, the redheart is one of the tastiest plums grown in the state.  It is aesthetically appealing being large, smooth, and heart-shaped with dark purplish red skin covered with golden specks. The flesh is blood red, firm and juicy.  There are few other varieties that rival the redheart’s sweet aromatic goodness. 

Rubyqueen – The Rubyqueen  is a medium sized fruit with a firm flesh and excellent flavor.  It has a beautiful dark red/black skin with a deep red flesh.  This is really a jem of a plum. 

Fortune – The fortune is a large bright red plum on a yellow background.  The flesh is yellow, firm and juice.  This attractive, good-tasting plum ripens in mid to second part of September.

Lydecker – The Lydecker is a new variety of plum harvested the first week of September.  It is dark blue-black and nearly round, similar to many California dessert plums.  It is said to have a superior ripe flavor to the more common varieties in its ripening season.

Simka – The fruit of the simka is large, uniform, with a very shallow suture.  It is a very attractive, good-tasting plum.  It is sweet with an excellent firm texture The skin is very dark red almost ebony and the flesh is very light green to slightly yellow.  It’s a very good choice for the first week of September. 

Alderman –The Alderman is a very attractive plum that has nice brilliant orange-red skin color and orange-yellow flesh. Skin is very firm, shiny, and waxy-like.  The fruit is medium to large often 2”-2 1/2” in diameter.  It has good texture and taste.  It is a very good late plum.  It ripens in the third/fourth week of September. 


Vibrant - The first European plum to be harvested, the Vibrant is a beautiful plum with a violet-blue skin and amber flesh.  It is a medium to large-sized fruit with good firmness and sweetness with a medium acid content for a nice balanced flavor. 

Vanette -   The Vanette is a large, purple-blue, freestone plum.  It has good sugar/acid ratio that accounts for excellent taste. .  Most years ripens in the third week of August.  It is very good dual - purpose plum and is one of the best fresh market plums.   It is an excellent all-around plum. It’s great for cooking, canning and fresh eating. 

Castleton -  The fruit of the Castleton is medium-sized, dark blue, oblong, and freestone. It has a sweet to mildly acidic taste.   It is very good dual purpose plum; suitable for fresh and cooking/preserving.  A known favorite when it comes to home canning, it makes an excellent burgundy jam.  Find them at the end of August to the first part of September at a farmer’s market or fruit stand near you.

N.Y. 6 – The N.Y. 6 is a relatively large blue-skinned, yellow-fleshed European plum.  It is a favorite variety for baby food as it has a very mild taste which makes it excellent choice for mixing with other fruit. It is a great choice for baking.  

Early Italian – The Early Italian is an old, well-known variety of blue plum that is also called “Early Fellenberg”.  With its pleasant firmness and its great taste, the Early Italian is one of the highest caliber plums Michigan has to offer.  

Stanley – The Stanley is the go-to for European plums.  It is medium to large fruit with dark blue skin and yellow-green flesh.  It can be identified by its distinct neck.

Valor – The Valor plum  is large and very good tasting.  Its skin is an attractive dark purple, speckled and the flesh is greenish- yellow.  It is semi-freestone and can be found starting the first week of September.

N.Y. 9 – This plum ripens in the first week of September. The fruit size varies due to the crop load and goes from small to large. The flesh is green and the skin is purple, covered with waxy bloom so it appears blue. It has mild taste and is rather sweet. Though, it is processing variety, when picked when the flesh color starts changing from green to amber, it has just enough acid to make it well eating plum.

Blufre -The Blufre is a medium-large sized European plums.  It is blue-skinned and yellow-fleshed with a very distinctive flavor.  The Blufre is a good choice for all your baking needs.

Long John
– The fruit of the Long John is large and has an interesting shape: it is quite long and bit “flattened”.  The skin is dark maroon, almost black, and covered with the waxy bloom, which gives it nice blue color.  The flesh is orange, firm and pleasantly tart.  It is freestone and it ripens with the Stanley at the first of September, but is larger and better quality.

Autumn Sweet – The Autumn Sweet is a new European blue-skinned, yellow-fleshed plum.  It is said to have superior quality to that of the traditional Italian plum.  It ripens the first week of September, making it a great choice for lunchboxes that kids are sure to love.  

Blue Damson – The Blue Damson is an old variety, renowned for its superb preserves and baking characteristics. It is a small blue plum with a yellow flesh.  The Damson is in high demand throughout farmer’s markets from individuals longing for the most mouthwatering jams and most intriguing plum bounces.

Italian – The Italian is a medium to large fruit with purple skin and yellow flesh.  It is a sweet plum that stores well and is a great dual purpose plum. 

Tulare Giant - The Tulare Giant is a new Japanese plum variety.  It is a large reddish-grey skin plum with an amber flesh.  Eat this one fresh because its incredible sweetness is rivaled by few other varieties 

Empress – The Empress is a well-known European plum variety. It has large, elliptical, symmetrical fruit of very good quality.  The skin is purple and covered with heavy waxy bloom.  The flesh is greenish-yellow and it is semi-cling. The Empress is a very nice late-season choice. 

Michigan Plum Growers Association

© 2012 - Forever, Michigan Plum Growers Advisory Group. All Rights Reserved.

Michigan Plum Growers Advisory Group
12800 Escanaba Drive Suite A
Dewitt, MI 48820-8680

Phone : 517.669.4250
Fax: 517.669.4251

Michigan Plums. All rights reserved.

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