Canada plum

Silhouette - Canada plum
  • Latin name: Prunus nigra Ait.
  • French name: Prunier noir
  • Taxonomic Serial Number: 24796
Description

Leaves

  • Leaf with details of gland-tipped teeth (above) and glands on leaf stalk (below) - Canada plum

Form

  • Broadly oval to widest above the middle
  • Narrowing abruptly to a long, slender tip
  • Base widely wedge-shaped, rounded or heart-shaped
  • Thin, fragile
  • Midvein prominent
  • Lateral veins slender

Length

  • 6–12 cm

Colour

  • Upper surface dull dark green
  • Lower surface slightly paler

Margin

  • Double-toothed
  • Teeth prominent, rounded, the smaller ones usually gland-tipped

Petiole

  • Stout with large, dark glands

Buds

  • Lateral bud and leaf scar - Canada plum

Form

  • Appressed against the twig
  • Scale tips thin, frayed

Length

  • 4–8 mm

Colour

  • Greyish-brown
  • Scale tips pale

Twigs

  • Winter twig with thorn-tipped dwarf shoot - Canada plum

Form

  • Slender, smooth
  • Shorter shoots often end in a thorn
  • May bear leaves and flowers
  • Bitter almond flavour

Colour

  • Reddish-brown

Flowers

Form

  • Showy, fragrant
  • On short, slender stalk
  • In small clusters (umbels) of 2–4 flowers on previous year’s twigs

Width

  • 15–25 mm

Colour

  • White turning pink
  • Stalk reddish

Structure

  • Synoecious

Floral timing

  • At the same time or just before the new leaves appear

Fruits

  • Fruit - Canada plum

Form

  • Somewhat elongated
  • Skin thick, not powdery
  • Flesh juicy, sour

Length

  • 25–30 mm

Colour

  • Skin red, orange-red or yellow
  • Flesh yellow

Timing

  • Ripen from mid-August to early September

Bark

Form

  • Slightly elongated lenticels
  • With age splitting vertically, the 2 separated parts curling back slightly to reveal the inner bark
  • Gradually becoming scaly

Colour

  • Black
  • Lenticels greyish

Size

Height

  • To 9 m

Diameter

  • To 25 cm

Tree form

  • Silhouette - Canada plum

Open-grown

Trunk

  • Short, crooked
  • Often divided about a metre above the ground into several stiff, upright, crooked branches

Crown

  • Irregular, flat-topped

Habitat

Site

  • River valleys, pastures, and along fencerows, especially on lime soils
  • Widely scattered individual trees

Range

Southern parts of eastern Canada

Photos
  • Canada plum
  • Canada plum
  • Canada plum
Distribution map
Distribution map - Canada plum
Date modified: