When Is The Best Time To Pick Plums?

Last Updated on March 14, 2022 by Fabiola L.

Plums are crispy, delicious fruits that are a summer staple. When I was younger, I had a plum tree in my backyard, and my siblings and I loved to eat its fruit every summer. It can be a little tricky to know how to tell if plums are ripe. In this article, we will discuss common questions when it comes to harvesting and planting plums. Soon you will be able to pick your plums at the precise time and know-how to avoid unripe fruit.

How Do You Know The Best Time To Harvest Plums?

The best time to pick plums are when the skin of the plum feels soft when it is squeezed softly. Not soft enough to feel mushy, but soft enough when adding a little pressure to the fruit. A popular trick to know when it is ready is if the plum can be removed from the branch with little effort. Another way to know if a plum is ready to be picked is the weight of the plum. A ripe plum feels heavy when you hold it in your hand. It should also smell sweet and have the right amount of color.The majority of plums are dark purple or tones of red. Some varieties can even be green! Just make sure the color is even and uniform throughout the fruit. Remember that plums are ripe on the tree for about two weeks.Pay attention to your plums so you avoid overripe plums falling from your trees! This fruit is too delicious to waste!

How Do You Ripen A Plum?

If you accidentally plucked a plum too early from the tree, don’t fret too much! You still have a chance to fix this mistake. One of the easiest ways to ripen a plum is to put the unripe plum inside a paper bag and fold down the top of the bag. What does this do to help? When fruits ripen, they release a gas named Ethylene. The paper bag helps contain this gas so the fruit can ripen. This speeds up the ripening process while allowing the fruit to breathe. If you want to speed up the process, place a ripe apple or banana inside the bag. Check on your plum regularly, because adding a ripe fruit will speed up the ripening process. You don’t want your plum to go from not ripe at all to way too ripe!

Best Time And Place To Grow Plums

Did you know that 93% of the plums in the United States are grown in California?

What makes California the plum palace of the United States? It has a pretty mild climate and good soil. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, plum trees grow best in hardiness zones 3-8. Plum trees need a little chill in the soil and air for them to blossom. But be careful because frost will damage the tree! Like many plants, I need six to eight hours of sunlight a day.If you are considering planting a plum tree, make sure you do it at the correct time of year. If you do this, you will avoid any problems with your trees and you will get the best-tasting fruit. The ideal time to plant this tree is late winter or early spring. This way you can have cooler temperatures without risking the life of your tree. Check out the USDA’s website to know if your state is ideal for growing plums.

Health Benefits Of Eating Plums

High In Fiber

Prunes (dried plums) are known as nature’s natural remedy to constipation. They are packed with fiber. Up to 12 grams of fiber per cup. Dried prunes have more fiber than fresh ones. The reason behind this is that dried plums contain more sorbitol than their fresh fruit counterparts. Sorbitol is a sugar alcohol that has a natural laxative effect Plums from your garden are healthy and also good for your digestive system, so don’t let prunes steal the show! Prunes have more fiber per serving, but plums have many other health benefits.

 how to tell if plums are ripe

Vitamin C

When somebody thinks about vitamin C, the first thing the majority of people think about is a ripe, cold orange. Oranges are well known for this vitamin, but you shouldn’t forget about plums!

Vitamin C boosts your immune system, helps your body absorb iron, and can improve your skin health. Just one plum has 10% of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C. Some of the other vitamins in plums are Vitamin K, Vitamin A, and Vitamin B6.


Don’t leave the potassium to the bananas! Potassium is one of the most essential nutrients for your body. This mineral has an important role when it comes to creating constant electrical pulses for your beating heart and contracting other muscle contractions in your body. Having enough sodium in your body is said to offset excess sodium’s effects on blood pressure.

What Exactly Are Antioxidants?

 how to ripen a plum

Plums contain a variety of antioxidants. This may seem a little vague if you don’t know what antioxidants are. In simple terms, antibiotics fight with compounds that can harm your body if there are too many of them.

Antioxidants fight things that can cause cancer, diabetes, and Arthritis. These are only some examples of things antioxidants prevent. You could say they are part of your bodies immune and defense system.

Plums are especially high in Polyphenol antioxidants. This type of antioxidant can reduce inflammation in the body and lower the risks of other dangerous and chronic diseases.

You can find out more health benefits of eating plums on this website here.


Knowing when the right time to pick plums from your garden is essential so you can get the most out of your harvest this year. Plums are great little fruits that are packed with nutrients. You know they are ready to pick when they are uniform in color and somewhat soft when you apply pressure to them. If you have any more tips and tricks to planting and eating plums, comment down below!

 when to pick plums

Find more information about How To Grow A Plum Tree From A Fresh Seed?