Wild Plum
(Prunus domestica)
Simple
Roundish
Alternate
Toothed
Broadest at tip
Simple
Roundish
Alternate
Toothed
blunt teeth

leaves

leaves

Winter twig
Winter twig

flowers

distribution map

The leaves are alternate, round, 4-10 cm long, and somewhat hairy on both sides when young. They have toothed margins and are on stalks up to 20 mm long.

ID check

Wild Plum is a small, deciduous tree up to 7.5 m tall with a roundish outline and a smooth brown bark becoming rough with age. It was introduced for its fruit and has escaped, especially into hedgerows and woodland margins, either by suckers or from stones dropped by people and birds.

White 5-petalled flowers in groups of 1-3 appear with the leaves in April or May.

The flower stalks are hairy and up to 20 mm long.

The fruits may be purple with a waxy bloom (Damson or Bullace), or green (Greengage) or small and yellow (Mirabelle).

Facts

  • Wild Plums probably originated as hybrids between Blackthorn and Cherry Plum.

  • The fruit, with plenty of sugar, can be bottled, stewed or made into jam.

  • The reddish heart-wood is hard and dense and looks most attractive when used in furniture-making.

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