Monthly Archives: July 2011

 

 

General Information

Although plums are believed to have originated in ancient China, most fresh plums are known as Japanese plums. Plums come in a wide array of skin and flesh colors, each with slightly different flavor profiles.

 

 

Availability

Plums are available from late May through October. For simplicity, plums are generally identified in the store by skin color – red or black.

See Availability Chart for details.

 

 

Nutrition Information

Emerging research suggests that many varieties of plums can be considered a “superfood” thanks to their high level of antioxidants. Research conducted by AgriLife Research at Texas A&M University found that many varieties of plums and plumcots matched or exceeded the much-touted blueberry in antioxidants and phytonutrients associated with disease prevention. Plums are also fat free, saturated fat free, sodium free, cholesterol free and a good source of vitamin C.

 

Selection and Storage

There are over 150 varieties of fresh plums grown in California but most are sold in stores as simply red or black. The skin color has no bearing on flavor or sweetness, it’s merely a varietal characteristic. Plums have subtle differences in flavor from variety to variety, far more so than peaches or nectarines. Look for uniformly firm fruit. Avoid overripe fruit that feels “watery” or fruit that has shriveled skin. Plums will continue to ripen at room temperature. Once the fruit reaches your desired softness, refrigerate it to keep it that way. Plums will last for a week or more in your refrigerator.

Plums and plumcots often have a white or silvery colored “coating” on them. This natural, waxy, protective coating is produced by the fruit itself. Most of this coating is washed off in the packing process. Some varieties are considered too delicate for the packing line equipment and are packed carefully by hand, bypassing the washing process. Fruit packed in this manner is known as “bloom on” and is often considered more desirable for its “straight from the orchard” appearance. Regardless of the level of bloom on your plum or plumcot, all fruit should be thoroughly rinsed with water before eating. The bloom is completely natural and harmless but if you want to remove it completely, simply wipe the
fruit with a cloth or paper towel.

 

 

General Information

Like plumcots, apriums are a hybrid fruit – a cross between an apricot and a plum, with a higher percentage of apricot characteristics. While apriums have the exterior appearance of an apricot, the flavor has perceptible plum qualities and a firm yet juicy flesh.

 

 

 

Availability

Aprium harvest starts in mid May with the Bella Jewel variety. July and August bring a delightful series of varieties. See Availability chart for more details.

 

 

 

Nutrition Information

Official nutritional analysis is not available for apiums. For an approximate reference, see apricot nutrition information.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Selection and Storage

Apriums and apricots are picked when the fruit has fully matured on the tree. At this point they have achieved their maximum size and sugar but often not their full orange color. They will occasionally have a slight tinge of green to the skin even though the flesh inside is orange. Look for fruit that is firm with a little “give” and a fragrant aroma. Some pieces of fruit may have splashes of red color on them while others may not. This merely means one piece of fruit got more sunlight than the other but it is not an indication of ripeness or sweetness. If your apricots have any green visible, keep them at room temperature for a day or two to ripen. Once they are soft, they can be stored in the refrigerator for approximately one week.

Family Tree Farms - Our Mission is to Consistently Produce, Package and Market the Most Flavorful Fruit in the World.