Wild Plum (Prunus americana) in the Plums Database

Common names:
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Give a thumbs up American plum
Give a thumbs up Goose Plum
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General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Tree
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 3 -40 °C (-40 °F) to -37.2 °C (-35)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 8b
Plant Height: 6 - 12 feet, to 20 -- 35 feet
Plant Spread: 6 to 12 feet, to 20 to 30 feet
Leaves: Deciduous
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Fruiting Time: Late summer or early fall
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: White
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Spring
Uses: Windbreak or Hedge
Dye production
Erosion control
Flowering Tree
Will Naturalize
Edible Parts: Fruit
Eating Methods: Raw
Cooked
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Birds
Resistances: Drought tolerant
Propagation: Seeds: Stratify seeds: 2 to 3 months at 40 degrees
Pollinators: Flies
Bees
Miscellaneous: With thorns/spines/prickles/teeth
Monoecious

shrubs in white bloom

Photo gallery:
Location: Jenkins Arboretum in Berwyn, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-04-16shrubs in white bloom
By ILPARW
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Location: Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IllinoisDate: 2018-08-22summer foliage
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Location: Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IllinoisDate: 2018-08-22one plum left, most were earlier
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Location: Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IllinoisDate: 2015-06-19small tree form in summer
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Location: Jenkins Arboretum in Berwyn, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-04-16several shrubs in white bloom
By ILPARW
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Location: Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IllinoisDate: 2018-08-22a few shrubs together as a colony
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Location: Aurora, IllinoisDate: April in 1980'sshrubs in white bloom
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Location: Aurora, IllinoisDate: April in 1980'sclose-up of flowers
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Location: Glen Ellyn, IllinoisDate: August in 1980'sfruits and foliage
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Location: Glen Ellyn, IllinoisDate: August in 1980'sfruits and foliage
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Location: Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IllinoisDate: 2015-06-19trunks of tree form
By ILPARW
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Location: northern DelawareDate: 2015-05-01maturing shrubs in white bloom
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Location: northern DelawareDate: 2015-05-01inside shrubs looking at flowers
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Location: northern DelawareDate: 2015-04-30trunks of tree form
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Location: Jenkins Arboretum in Berwyn, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-07-30shrubs in summer
By ILPARW
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Location: Jenkins Arboretum in Berwyn, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-07-30shrubs in summer
By ILPARW
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Location: Jenkins Arboretum in Berwyn, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-08-13some plums among upper branches
By ILPARW
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Location: Jenkins Arboretum in Berwyn, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-08-13summer leaves
By ILPARW
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This plant is tagged in:
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Comments:
Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Jan 22, 2018 3:48 PM

In the early 1950's three American Plums (or Wild Plums) were planted in a big bed close to the new modern house of my parents along with Pfitzer Junipers nearby, a Winged Euonymus, and a Bolleana White Poplar. The plum shrubs got about 10 feet high and inter-branched with each other. They produced delicious pink-orange round plums about 1 to 1.5 inches wide that we ate raw and my dad made plum liqueur from them. They lasted until about 2003 when new home owners redid the landscape. American Plum grows in various upland sites in a native range from southern New England down to northwest Florida to eastern Oklahoma, up the Great Plains to eastern Montana and all the Dakotas to southern Minnesota & Wisconsin, all Illinois & Indiana up into southern Michigan and the southern tip of Ontario. It grows 1.5 to 2.5 feet/year and lives 35 to 65 years. The doubly-toothed leaves get 2 to 4 inches long x 1.25 to 2 inches wide and develop a pale yellow fall color. It can be either a large shrub or small tree with stiff branching and some stiff sharp branch spurs. The white flowers in late April to mid-May emerge before leaves and have a strong sweet spicy smell. The delicious pink-orange plums mature in late July to August to early September, depending on latitude. It has shallow, fibrous roots and is easy to transplant. I don't know of any conventional nurseries that sell it anymore as in the 50's and 60's, but some native plant and mail order nurseries sell some. In nature it is just found in some occasional local sites.

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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Trouble IDing Tree by DeerHeart Feb 12, 2019 6:47 PM 8
Narrowing down the species for plums by dave Feb 7, 2017 10:02 AM 13
Los Angeles Landscape tree by dwidjaj Nov 21, 2016 12:24 PM 5
Fruit Trees growing on the Jersey Shore by matthewdurkinjr Oct 9, 2016 2:16 PM 13
Carolina Cherry Laurel (Prunus caroliniana); seedlings by Zencat Apr 9, 2015 12:32 PM 8
wild plum ?? by gingin Apr 24, 2012 1:50 PM 17

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