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Prunus americana (American Plum)

American Plum, Wild Plum, American Wild Yellow Plum, American Wild Red Plum, August Plum, Canada Plum, Goose Plum, Hog Plum, American Plum, River Plum, Sloe Plum

Prunus americana, American Plum, Wild Plum, American Wild Yellow Plum, American Wild Red Plum, August Plum, Canada Plum, Goose Plum, Hog Plum, American Plum, River Plum, Sloe Plum, Flowering Tree, White flowers, Red Berries
Prunus americana, American Plum, Wild Plum, American Wild Yellow Plum, American Wild Red Plum, August Plum, Canada Plum, Goose Plum, Hog Plum, American Plum, River Plum, Sloe Plum, Flowering Tree, White flowers, Red Berries

Very showy when in bloom, Prunus americana (American Plum) is a small tree or large multi-stemmed shrub adorned with a graceful, spreading crown clothed with ovate, toothed leaves, 3-4 in. long (7-10 cm). Dark green in summer, they turn brilliant red to pale yellow in the fall. In mid-spring, a profusion of fragrant, 5-petaled white flowers held in flat-topped clusters smother the bare branches and create a terrific floral display. The blossoms give way to clusters of edible, round, red plums which ripen in early summer. The plums are attractive to birds and other wildlife and have a sour outer skin, but their juicy flesh is sweet. They can be harvested for processing into jams, jellies, preserves, and pies. The interior twigs can develop into thorns, making some plants nearly impenetrable. Usually grown for its ornamental value, this fast-growing Prunus species is good as a single specimen and suited to hedgerows.

  • Grows up to 15-25 ft. tall and wide (4-8 m). Will sucker to form large thickets in the wild.
  • Performs best in full sun or part shade in dry to medium, well-drained soils. Best flower production is obtained in full sun. Drought and dry soil tolerant.
  • Perfect choice for shrub borders, hedges, or screens. It is also grown for erosion control, spreading by root sprouts.
  • Susceptible to aphids, caterpillars, leaf spot, canker, black knot, plum curculio, and brown rot.
  • Promptly remove suckers to prevent any undesired spread.
  • May be rooted from dormant hardwood, softwood, semi-hardwood, or root cuttings. Semi-hardwood and softwood cuttings taken in summer root easiest.
  • Native to eastern and central North America.

Requirements

Hardiness 3 - 8
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Rosaceae
Genus Prunus - Flowering Cherry Tree
Common names American Plum, Plum, Hog Plum
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Late)
Fall
Height 15' - 25'
(4.6m - 7.6m)
Spread 15' - 25'
(4.6m - 7.6m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Midwest, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northeast, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Rocky Mountains, South Carolina, South Dakota, Southeast, Southwest, Tennessee, United States, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds
Garden Uses Beds And Borders, Hedges And Screens
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Prunus mume (Plum Blossom)
Prunus x cistena (Purple-Leaf Sand Cherry)
Prunus ilicifolia (Hollyleaf Cherry)
Prunus caroliniana (Carolina Cherry Laurel)
Prunus serotina (Black Cherry)
Prunus x incam ‘Okame’ (Taiwan Cherry)

Recommended Companion Plants

Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia Creeper)
Quercus macrocarpa (Bur Oak)
Viburnum lentago (Nannyberry)
Viola sororia (Common Blue Violet)

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Prunus x yedoensis (Yoshino Cherry Blossom)
Prunus pendula (Weeping Cherry Blossom)
Prunus x subhirtella (Higan Cherry)
Prunus serrulata (Japanese Cherry Blossom)
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While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 3 - 8
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Rosaceae
Genus Prunus - Flowering Cherry Tree
Common names American Plum, Plum, Hog Plum
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Late)
Fall
Height 15' - 25'
(4.6m - 7.6m)
Spread 15' - 25'
(4.6m - 7.6m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Midwest, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northeast, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Rocky Mountains, South Carolina, South Dakota, Southeast, Southwest, Tennessee, United States, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds
Garden Uses Beds And Borders, Hedges And Screens
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Prunus (Cherry Tree)
Not sure which Prunus (Cherry Tree) to pick?
Compare Now

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