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 Euro plums for the Willamette Valley 
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Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 9:10 am
Posts: 95
Location: Corvallis
Post Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
Obviously the prune-type plums (Brooks, Italian, Moyer, Stanley, etc.) work well here. Are there any others? Gages, mirabelles? There is a local farmer that brings "green gages" to the market. Very small, green, sweet, soft - no idea if they are the real green gage, but they are not very special to eat. Last fall I got to try some Oullins which were also nothing special. Admittedly last year conditions were bad for most fruit so that might not have been a fair test.

What (non-prune type) European plums do well around here?


Wed Apr 27, 2011 9:29 am
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Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 10:57 am
Posts: 1351
Location: Portland, OR
Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
Damson plums grow well. They are small, and distinctive. They are an ancient variety that I think was originally from Damascus, Syria. Maybe Saul fell down on the road and ate one and thought, pretty good!
John S
PDX OR


Wed Apr 27, 2011 8:08 pm
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Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 9:10 am
Posts: 95
Location: Corvallis
Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
Thanks John. They are pretty much just for cooking purposes, right?


Sat Apr 30, 2011 10:03 pm
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Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 10:57 am
Posts: 1351
Location: Portland, OR
Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
I have eaten them for fresh eating. I liked them. They are small and a little more distinctively flavored than most Euro plums. I prefer Asian plums. I'm sure that there are many people who eat them fresh, but I think that most people cook them, can them, or dry them.
John S
PDX OR


Sun May 01, 2011 12:31 am
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Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 11:27 pm
Posts: 1151
Location: Yamhill County, Oregon
Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
I realize the “Petite Prune” or “French Petite” is a European prune variety, but it’s one of my favorites. Smaller than the average Euro prunes - it packs a flavor beyond any I’ve eaten. I’ve had poor luck establishing a decent graft of them and no longer know where to find a tree, but with access in the past, I’d bypass every other fruit tree (in the City of Milwaukie OR) to eat their addictive fruit. Here’s a description:

“European prune. Small to medium, long, oval fruit with violetpurple skin. The flesh is greenishyellow, nearly freestone with a mild, sugary flavor. One of the best for dessert and canning. Ripens in September.”

There’s a tree of Damson in my area… but had I not been working along side it last fall, and quite hungry… They were inconstantly sour, to me. They ‘looked ripe,’ but rarely were. And the ones that were ripe lacked a flavor worth going out of my way for.

Here’s a description: “European plum. Small, blueblack tart plum prized for jams, jellies & chutney for many years. Cold hardy, bears heavily. Ripens late August through September. Selffruitful, best with a pollinator.”

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Sun May 01, 2011 8:11 am
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Joined: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:25 pm
Posts: 46
Location: UK
Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
Damsons can be eaten fresh, but cooking transforms them, they are rich and astringent, quite distinctive - perfect for pies, crumbles, and jam etc. Here in the UK they are generally regarded as a separate sub-species, Prunus insititia. Definitely worth growing at least one damson!

Many European plums can be used for cooking, but the best ones are for eating fresh. I think you would be hard put find any fruit of any kind that compares with some of the top European plums, especially the gages or gage-like plums, when eaten straight from the tree.


Sun May 01, 2011 9:59 am
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Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 3:55 pm
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Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
My mother moved into a place, down in Eugene about 10 years ago, that has a Bavay Green Gage tree. They are a delight to eat raw and she usually sends up 4 jars of the jam to last me through the year. She hasn't had any problems with brown blossom blight as she is diligent about treatments during the wet season. It seems, however that most of the suppliers don't have any right now. Good luck.

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Sat Jun 11, 2011 4:18 pm
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Joined: Fri Jun 17, 2011 10:41 am
Posts: 1
Post Re: Euro plums for the Willamette Valley
Hi,
One of the posts earlier spoke about Euro plums and although not suitable for growing in the Wlllamette valley, the 'California dried plum' originated from the world famous Agen plum of SW France, I believe. It was introduced way back in what is now the century before last and has been a great success.
The Agen plum is dried to produce prunes although the French call them pruneaux. The French word for plums is prunes -very confusing.
The Agen is said to be finest in the world but I've had some indifferent ones even in France and I think the California dried plum is better or at least more consistent in quality.
But both of them make the most gorgeous prune tarts especially when laced with French brandy.
Helen


Fri Jun 17, 2011 11:08 am
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