The Q&A Archives: What Is A Pluot Tree

Question: When we bought our home two years ago, we had many fruit trees. One is a pluat or plum/apricot tree. Last year it had no fruit. This year it is loaded with gorgeous fruit. When is it ripe? Also when and how do I prune it?

Answer: Pluot is just what you've described - the fruit is a combination plum/apricot that leans toward plum in flavor and texture. The different varieties vary in fruit skin color, from yellow to red, making this an attractive as well as a productive landscape tree. Most fruit should ripen in July but experience will be your best guide. Begin harvesting when fruit "gives" when touched, but don't wait until it's so soft it starts to fall off the tree!

As with any fruit tree, prune during the dormant season, keeping the center of the tree open for ease in harvesting. Your tree produces fruit on "spurs". If you look at the branches now while they're full of fruit you should be able to recognize the spurs. If you don't prune too many off, you'll have a bumper crop of fruit again next year.

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