European Plum Prunus domestica 'Mallard' (D)

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Hard-care
plum 'Mallard'


Prunus domestica 'Mallard', commonly known as the European plum or common plum, showcases a stunning appearance with an array of colors and textures throughout its growing season. The plant boasts a hardy trunk from which branches spread out, presenting a structural base for its foliage and fruits. The leaves are lush and green, with a typical elliptical shape that tapers to a point, and they possess a softly serrated edge that gives them a slightly textured feel. During the blooming period, the European plum is adorned with a profusion of delicate, white flowers that emerge before the leaves. These blossoms cluster along the branches, creating a dense floral display that is both fragrant and aesthetically pleasing, attracting a variety of pollinators. As the seasons progress, the flowers give way to the fruit for which the tree is so well known. The plums typically have a rich, deep purple skin that may appear almost blueish, with a whitish bloom on the surface that can be rubbed off. The skin is smooth and taut, encapsulating the soft, juicy flesh within. When cut open, the interior reveals a sweet, succulent texture with a central pit. The plums are not only appealing to the eye but also tempt the palate with their sweet and slightly tart flavor. The European plum, while known for its fruit, also adds beauty to any landscape with its seasonal changes, from the delicate blossoms of spring to the lush greenery of summer followed by the harvest of delectable fruits. When autumn arrives, the leaves can turn into various shades of yellow, orange, or red, providing an additional burst of color before they drop, completing the annual cycle of this picturesque plant.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      European Plum, Common Plum, Domestic Plum

    • Common names

      Prunus domestica 'Mallard'

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Plum trees, which Prunus domestica 'Mallard' is a cultivar, are not typically toxic to humans when it comes to the fruit itself. However, the leaves, seeds (pits), and stems can be harmful if ingested. They contain cyanogenic glycosides which can release cyanide when the plant material is damaged or digested. Symptoms of poisoning from consuming these parts of the plant can include headache, dizziness, difficulty breathing, and nausea, which can potentially lead to more severe outcomes such as coma or death in extreme cases of cyanide poisoning.

    • To pets

      Plum trees can be toxic to pets, including dogs and cats, if they consume the leaves, stems, or pits. These parts of the plant contain cyanogenic glycosides, which can release cyanide when chewed or digested. If a pet ingests these parts, they could display symptoms of cyanide poisoning, including panting, dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, and shock. In severe cases, ingestion can lead to coma or death, so it is important to prevent pets from accessing these parts of plum trees.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      15-20 feet (4.6-6.1 meters)

    • Spread

      15-20 feet (4.6-6.1 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Nutritional Value: Prunus domestica 'Mallard', commonly known as Plum, offers fruits that are a good source of vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, and antioxidants.
    • Culinary Uses: Plums can be eaten fresh, used in cooking and baking, or processed into jams, jellies, and juices, providing versatility in the kitchen.
    • Aesthetic Appeal: With beautiful spring flowers and a pleasing tree shape, the Plum tree can enhance the visual appeal of gardens and landscapes.
    • Pollinator Attraction: Plum flowers attract bees and other pollinators, supporting biodiversity and the health of the local ecosystem.
    • Shade and Shelter: As a medium-sized tree, the Plum provides shade and shelter in gardens and outdoor spaces, improving the microclimate.
    • Wildlife Support: The fruit of the Plum tree offers a food source for birds and other wildlife, integrating well with natural surroundings.
    • Economic Value: Plum cultivation can be economically beneficial for fruit production, contributing to local and commercial agriculture.
    • Erosion Control: The root system of the Plum tree can help stabilize the soil, reducing erosion in certain landscapes.
    • Craft and Woodworking: Plum wood can be utilized in cabinetry and for crafting purposes, well-regarded for its woodworking qualities.
    • Recreational Opportunities: Plums can offer recreational activities such as fruit picking and gardening, encouraging outdoor engagement and education.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Antioxidant content: Prunus domestica 'Mallard' contains various antioxidants, which may help in reducing oxidative stress and protecting against some chronic diseases.
    • Fiber source: This variety of plum can aid digestion and bowel regularity due to its dietary fiber content.
    • Vitamin supply: Providing vitamins such as vitamin A and vitamin C, which are important for immune function and eye health.
    • Mineral content: The plums are a source of important minerals like potassium, which can help maintain cardiovascular health.
    • Blood sugar regulation: The fruit may have effects on blood sugar levels due to its fiber and sorbitol content, though this is not a clinically proven treatment.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Woodworking: The wood of the plum tree is valued for its density and may be used for making small, fine objects such as inlays and decorative items.
    • Ink Production: The dark juice of plum fruits can be used to create a natural dye or ink for art or fabric coloring.
    • Floral Arrangements: Branches of plum trees with blossoms are often used in floral arrangements for their aesthetic appeal.
    • Culinary Garnish: Blossoms of the plum tree can be used as an edible garnish to add a touch of elegance to dishes and desserts.
    • Homemade Cosmetics: Plum oil, extracted from the kernels, is sometimes used in homemade creams and balms for its hydrating properties.
    • Animal Feed: Fallen or excess fruits can serve as a food source for livestock, particularly pigs.
    • Plum Pit Carvings: The hard pits of plums can be carved into beads, pendants, or small trinkets.
    • Fruit Leather: The flesh of plums can be dried and made into fruit leather, a chewy, sweet snack.
    • Biofuel Production: The biomass from plum trees, such as excess wood, can be used in biofuel production.
    • Photography: Plum blossoms are often subjects of photography and painting due to their striking appearance, especially in spring.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The European plum is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The European plum is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Abundance: The Prunus domestica, commonly known as plum tree, bears fruits that are often associated with abundance and bounty due to their plentiful and luscious crops.
    • Renewal: As a deciduous tree, the plum tree represents renewal and the cycle of life with its annual shedding of leaves and the subsequent emergence of new growth each spring.
    • Inner richness: Plums have a hidden sweetness inside, which can symbolize hidden treasures and inner richness in a person's character or life.
    • Endurance: Plum trees are known for their resilience and their ability to thrive in various conditions, thus symbolizing the human qualities of endurance and adaptability.
    • Transformation: The blooming of a plum tree represents transformation as it transitions from a bare tree in the winter to a bountiful, flower-filled one in the spring.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Summer-early fall
As needed
  • water dropWater

    For a European plum tree like the Prunus domestica 'Mallard', regular watering is essential, especially during the growing season. Water the tree deeply once a week, providing about 10 gallons per week for young trees, and up to 15-20 gallons for mature trees, depending on the weather conditions. During hot or dry spells, you may need to increase the frequency to twice a week. Always water at the base of the tree to ensure water reaches the roots. It is crucial to avoid over-watering as this can lead to root rot.

  • sunLight

    European plum trees, including Prunus domestica 'Mallard', thrive in full sun exposure. They require a minimum of six hours of direct sunlight daily to produce the best fruit. Locate the tree in an unobstructed area away from taller structures or trees that might shade it, as ample light is crucial for the health and productivity of the tree.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The European plum 'Mallard' can tolerate a range of temperatures but does best when the climate is moderate. Ideally, the temperatures should range between 55°F and 75°F. This plum variety can withstand winter temperatures as low as -20°F without damage to the dormant buds and can survive the summer heat up to 95°F.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning is important for the European plum to maintain tree health, improve fruit size, and facilitate a strong structure. Prune once a year during the dormant season, in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Remove dead or diseased branches, thin out crowded limbs, and shape the tree to allow light penetration and air circulation.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    The European plum 'Mallard' requires well-draining, loamy soil rich in organic matter; a soil pH of 5.5 to 6.5 is ideal for optimal growth.

  • plantRepotting

    European plums like 'Mallard' do not typically require repotting as they are mainly grown outdoors directly in the ground.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    European plum 'Mallard' is adaptable to outdoor humidity levels, not requiring specific humidity conditions.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Growing 'Mallard' plum indoors isn't practical due to size.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun, well-drained soil, water regularly.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The common name of Prunus domestica 'Mallard' (D) is the domestic plum. The life cycle begins with seed germination, which requires stratification to break dormancy and usually happens in early spring. Following germination, the seedling stage involves initial root growth and the emergence of plum seedling leaves, which will take several years to mature into a fruit-bearing adult tree. The vegetative stage is marked by the development of branches, leaves, and larger root systems to support the growing plant. After reaching maturity, typically around 3-5 years, the plum tree enters the reproductive stage, characterized by annual cycles of flowering in spring followed by fruit set and then harvesting in late summer or early fall. Lastly, the tree may live for several decades, with older trees showing reduced fruit production eventually leading to senescence and death.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Summer-early fall

    • Prunus domestica 'Mallard', commonly known as the European Plum 'Mallard', is typically propagated by grafting. This method involves taking a scion, or a young shoot, from a mature 'Mallard' plum tree and attaching it to a compatible rootstock, which can be another species of Prunus that is well-suited to the local soil and climate conditions. The best time to graft is late winter or early spring before the sap starts to flow and the buds begin to swell. The graft union is carefully wrapped to ensure that the scion remains in place and to prevent infection. After a few weeks, the scion begins to grow and merge with the rootstock, eventually forming a new 'Mallard' plum tree.