"Peach" european plum and many possibly ridiculous plum related questions

Discussion in 'Fruit and Nut Trees' started by JCardina, Jun 22, 2009.

  1. JCardina

    JCardina Active Member

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    Location:
    Comox, Vancouver Island, British Columbia Canada
    We planted two plum trees two or three summers ago. (yeah I know but it's definitely 2 or 3, no more no less) They are now about 6 feet high and very leafy and flower each spring. They have yet to produce fruit with the exception of one single lone plum this year.

    When we chose them at the nursery we picked them because they are supposed to be self fertile. I'm wondering if they are too young yet to properly set fruit or if they are not actually self fertile.

    They are labelled "Italian Prune" which I'm guessing is an Italian cultivar of European plum (and has never produced a single fruit) and the other is labelled "Peach European Plum" which I can't seem to find anywhere online any info about however it has one lone plum this year.

    I've found lot's of info about peaches and lots about European plums but no reference to this particular plum cultivar.

    I'm fairly certain they are both on dwarf rootstock because we were after all dwarf trees at the time (we also got apples and cherries and hazelnuts at the same time).

    Are these really two plum trees that should produce at least *some* plums on their own as we were told at the nursery?

    Are they likely to help fertilize each other (they do seem to flower around the same time)?

    How many years does it generally take for a European plum to be mature enough to produce?

    This year when they were flowering at their peak we were getting regular rain and the rain pretty much let up about the time the blooms were dying off, is this likely to result in zero fruit as well? Is there anything to be done if this happens next spring? I guess I could tarp them and pollinate them with a brush or some other crazy scheme but I'm guessing commercial orchards must deal with rain some how without losing their entire crop every year so perhaps it's not as big a deal as I think it might be?
     
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    'Italian' is a common standard variety. It is a prune type, with a high sugar content. Yields of a fairly large long-established specimen on Camano Island have been light for some years, but elsewhere in the region trees may drip with fruit.

    More on growing fruit here can be found in the handbook linked to near the top right of this page. If you click on the name of it a pdf file of the handbook opens.

    http://mountvernon.wsu.edu/FruitHorticulture/Trials.html

    'Peach' is also a European plum, but not a prune type:

    Medium-large, roundish fruit; skin dark purplish-red, covered with thin bloom; flesh golden-yellow, moderately juicy, firm, subacid, mild; quality good; stone free; ripens early. Excellent for canning. Tree large, very vigorous, spreading; hardy; moderately productive

    --S. Facciola, Cornucopia II - A Source Book of Edible Plants (1998, Kampong Publications, Vista)
     
  3. JCardina

    JCardina Active Member

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    Location:
    Comox, Vancouver Island, British Columbia Canada
    Thanks RonB!
     
  4. Pasquale

    Pasquale Active Member

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    Maybe! Nature need a helping hand to pollinate your fruit trees. A Mason Bee colony will sure help.
     
  5. JCardina

    JCardina Active Member

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    Comox, Vancouver Island, British Columbia Canada
    We planted a *lot* of clover right in our "orchard" to deliberately attract more bees, between that and the flowering Portuguese laurels we have about a billion bees out there. They did flower pretty early though. I did see bees all over the cherry trees that flowered when it wasn't raining. I think it's probably just a combination of immature trees and bad timing with the rain. I still wonder how commercial orchards get through a rainy flowering period though.
     
  6. dawgdrvr

    dawgdrvr Member

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    Location:
    Rochester , WA, U.S.A.
    I have 4 European plum trees just south of Olympia . 1 Italian, 1 green gage and 2 stanleys. all were planted in spring of '06. They flower beautifully, this is the first year that I have gotten fruit. one of the Stanley's has 12 plums on it. Not a bumper crop but it will work. I think it will be another year or so before the others produce any fruit.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2009
  7. kazimea

    kazimea Member

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    Location:
    Courtenay, BC, Canada
    It was interesting to find this thread, as I have exactly the same two plums in my garden, both approx 7 years old now, about 12 feet tall. They both flower well. The prune plum finally produced successfully last year, with a few dozen fruit. The Peach European Plum, right beside it, flowered profusely but set not even a single fruit. Can anyone confirm for me that this tree is (as its tag says) self-fertile, or that the two will cross-pollinate?
     
  8. Fine ocean parker

    Fine ocean parker Active Member

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    Location:
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    Try to find a fertilizer with micro nutrients with specifically boron and use around the drip line. Also, if you haven't been pruning that will help but, it is getting a little late to prune. Good luck.
     
  9. Tree Nut

    Tree Nut Active Member

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    Just be patient. I have an Italian plum that finally produced fruit last year after many years of no flowers and fruit. The branches were near breaking with fruit last year. Mine reached around 15+ feet before it finally produced...
     

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