Satsuma Plum

nriqueMarch 24, 2011

I was looking at the Satsuma plum, but I've been reading some conflicting information on it. Some places say that it's a tart plum, others say that it is sweet without much tartness. Some say it is good for fresh eating and cooking, some say it is only good for cooking, not fresh eating.

I was wondering what experiences others have had with this variety.

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tcstoehr

They seem like quite decent eating right of the tree, if you let them ripen up. Many a time I have eaten tart Satsumas off my tree because I wanted a plum... now! It's the first one available in my yard so naturally some get picked too early. I canned about ten quarts one year. They don't hold their flavor in the canning process, and end up with a prune juice sort of flavor. Not bad at all though.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 1:11PM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

They are a great eating plum if picked late, and at that point are much less tart than most plums. I pick all of mine late. I dried some last summer and the result was similar to tcstoehr, the things that make the flavor really stand out were gone but it was still a good everyday prune.

Scott

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 3:57PM
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ramble

scottsmith,

Which asian plums would you reco for zone 6?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 4:56PM
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alan haigh

Ramble, I'm in 6 and Scott will recommend Satsuma as will I, but it's awfully nice to have several to spread the season. For me the season starts with Methely (black knot magnet) which when you do all the necessary thinning can be quite nice, then Erli Magic which you'd have to graft from my stock to get apparently, but it's much better to my tastes than the very reliable, and still quite good, Shiro in its season. Then Satsuma will come in about with Santa Rosa which I find useful here but others complain of its shy bearing (SR not Sat.). Ozark Premier comes in at the same time as this and if you want to impress your friends with baseball sized plums that are quite good (not spetacular) it's another one to try.

Elephant Heart comes in after this along with Fortune and both can be problematic. My first EH was in a pretty shady spot where it performed like a star until cambium kill claimed it. I liked it so much I put one in a much sunnier spot and now its ridden with pitch pockets (hard parts in the flesh) and I only get a few flawless totally wonderful plums. Fortune is great when untimely rain doesn't crack it to death.

Here we can also grow a wide range of Euro plums which Scott hasn't been able to do in his more southern locale, and I'll give you a run down on my opinion of them anytime but not right now- gotta run.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 6:17PM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Ramble, the only plum besides Satsuma that has been a real winner for me is Purple Heart, but I haven't gotten enough plums off of it to be sure - it fruited for the first time last summer. Shiro if picked late is a decent plum and its super reliable. Superior is a very nice plum, its a sweet-n-sour one but can be a little mushy in a hotter climate. I have many other ones that will fruit this year and I hope I can have some better recommendations in a year. I'm not growing Methley because their skin is somewhat astringent; many people don't mind that at all.

Hman, I have pitch pocket problems on my Wickson. I will get some EH this year so will see how it does.

Scott

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 7:16PM
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campv

I am in Arizona. This is my fourth Satsuma Plum I have planted in different states. Its the first thing I planted when we moved here 5 years ago. I can't say anything bad about the tree. Fast grower,major producer, red dark sweet meat, great for eating,make great jam or liqueur. At 5 years old (was bare root)the the tree trunk is 12" dia and the tree is about 14'high. Not bad for this rotten Az soil. They are not a picky tree. Great Choice

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 12:40PM
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nrique

Thank you all for the feedback. I'll have to add Satsuma to my plum wish-list for next winter that already includes Howard's Miracle, Padre, Golden Nectar, Mariposa, Laroda, and Elephant's Heart.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 4:33PM
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