How to Grow European Plums

Prunus domestica

european plums and prunes

European Plums are small to medium sized deciduous trees with small white blossoms. They are grown for their delicious fresh and juicy fruit. Fruits are usually oval, hardier than Japanese varieties and typically ripen later in the season. Some varieties are also ideal for drying and are called Prunes.

Exposure / Light:

European plums should be planted in the full sun. Avoid planting in low-lying areas or frost pockets.

Moisture / Soil:

Plant European Plums in moist, but well drained soils. Avoid wet areas or locations with poor drainage.


Apply Arts GardenPro Fruit Tree and Berry Food in the early spring.

European Plum Pollination

European Plums are partially self-fertile. Meaning they will produce some fruit on their own, but will produce more if another plum tree is planted nearby. As they bloom later than Japanese Plums, these two types can not be used to pollinate each other.

Fruit Thinning

It may be necessary to thin European Plums in order to improve overall fruit quality. Remove excess fruit from the tree while the fruits are juvenile.

Harvesting European Plums

Fruits should be allowed to ripen on the tree. When they are fully coloured they will be ready to pick. Ripe fruit is soft and easy to pull off the tree. This is normally between July and October depending on the variety and the weather conditions.

Pruning European Plums

 Unlike other fruit trees, Plums are not pruned when dormant. Instead, prune in early spring and then thin out excess branches again in summer. Limit your pruning to limbs that are not bearing fruit or those that are dead damaged, or diseased.

Winter Care

Protect your European Plum tree from insects and disease by spraying a combination of Lime Sulphur and Dormant Oil in late winter. A coppery spray in summer is also beneficial. In early spring, protect blossoms from frost.

For More Information:

For more information about European Plums, visit us at Arts Nursery Ltd or call 604.882.1201. We carry a great selection of European Plums and Prunes. Best selection is available in early to mid-spring.


Author: Arts Nursery Ltd. Source: Arts Nursery Ltd.

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V4N 3W8

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