I have all kinds of fruit trees and plants in my yard.
Pears, apples, a peach tree, grape vines, mulberry (if that is something you consider a fruit and not yard litter), some black raspberries, and one or two strawberries. I even have a plum tree or two, but they never produce fruit and are doomed to an early death. I can’t grown smooth stone fruit – our ground is infected with a black knot fungus that seems to affect only smooth stone fruits like plums and cherries. I suspect, however, that my inspection of the peach tree today has revealed fungus there as well.
And it’s a pity, because tiny summer plums are one of my favorite food memories.
We would pick plums in a wind break at a state park near my home. We didn’t get them every year. But when we did, they were amazing. Pinkish yellow, like the sunset, their skins were tough. But the pulp inside was warm from the sun, soft – almost liquid – and sweet. The pits had a mild tang that clung to them as they held on to the flesh of the plum.
If we picked enough, Grandma would make juice that would eventually become the most beautiful, delicious jelly. Clear and that sunrise/sunset color, it kept the summer alive fo us.
The plums from the farmers market last week reminded me of those South Dakota plums. My husband said, “No one is eating these.” Oh, yes – someone is eating them. I’m just taking my time.