Stone fruit growers who have traditionally produced red plums such as Victoria and Jubilee are now beginning to invest in blue plum varieties because of their many benefits.
Steph Dunn James of wholesale tree nursery Frank P Matthews told HortNews that during the last few years some growers have, for instance, started to grow Haganta, a late-season blue plum from Germany. She explained: “I think these varieties are catching people’s eye, certainly in the commercial world. Most of them extend the English season. A lot of them come in September, which is late for plums.” James noted that, like Haganta, the majority of blue plums available on today’s market originated in Germany. One such blue plum is TopTaste Kulinaria, for which the Worcestershire-based nursery won a silver award at this year’s Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) National Plant Show. James said: “It comes from Germany’s renowned stone fruit tree specialist, Gräb. We are their UK agents so we have links to all of these varieties.” She added that, whilst it is not a late plum, TopTaste stands out for being self-fertile and for its disease-resistant qualities. “There are not many self-fertile plums on the market. And one of its many benefits, apart from being really tasty, is that it’s resistant to plum pox virus and a number of bacterial diseases, which means it is popular with both commercial and amateur growers.” James revealed that the nursery still has some TopTaste trees available for this winter.
For more information visit www.frankpmatthews.com