Tips For Growing Marjorie’s Seedling Plum Trees

Tips For Growing Marjorie’s Seedling Plum Trees

By: Bonnie L. Grant, Certified Urban Agriculturist

Marjorie’s Seedling tree is an excellent plum for smaller gardens. It needs no pollinating partner and produces a tree full to the brim with deep purple-red fruit. Marjorie’s seedling plums get sweeter as they stay on the tree, a bonus for home gardeners who can wait, unlike commercial growers who pick early. If you love plums, try growing Marjorie’s seedling plum as a low maintenance, heavy producing fruit tree.

About Marjorie’s Seedling Plum Trees

Marjorie’s seedling plum trees will produce copious amounts of sweet-tart fruits for canning, baking or fresh eating. This variety is known for its intense flavor when allowed to fully ripen on the tree. The fruits are beautiful with deep color that turns almost purple black when mature. It is a perfect tree for a small garden because you don’t need another plum variety for it to set fruit.

Marjorie’s seedling plums are small fruits with deeply yellow, juicy flesh. The trees can grow 8 to 13 feet (2.5 to 4 m.) tall with a bushy habit unless trained. There are several seasons of interest with this plum tree. In early spring, a cloud of pearly white flowers appears, followed by the deeply hued fruit and finally purple-bronze foliage in fall.

It is in flowering group 3 and considered a late season plum with fruit arriving in September to October. Marjorie’s seedling tree is resistant to most common plum diseases and is a reliable producer. It has been around in the U.K. since the early 1900s.

Growing Marjorie’s Seedling Plum

Marjorie’s Seedling is an easy plum tree to grow. These trees prefer cool, temperate regions and well-draining, sandy soil. Acidic soil with a pH range of 6.0 to 6.5 is ideal. The planting hole should be twice as wide and deep as the root mass and well worked.

Water the soil in well and keep new trees moist as they establish. Water once per week deeply, or more if the temperatures are high and no natural precipitation occurs.

Prevent weeds around the root zone. Use about an inch (2.5 cm.) of organic mulch to accomplish this and also to conserve moisture. Young trees should be staked to help them develop an erect trunk.

Seedling Plum Tree Care

Prune in summer to keep an open center and sturdy scaffold of branches. You may also have to tip prune to thin heavy bearing branches. Plums don’t generally need much shaping but they can be made into espaliers or trained to a trellis. Start this early in the plant’s life and expect a delay of fruiting.

Fertilize in spring before the flowers open. If deer or rabbits are common in your area, erect a barrier around the trunk to prevent damage. These plums will usually bear in 2 to 4 years after planting. Fruit is prolific so be ready to share!

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'Marjorie’s Seedling' Plum Tree

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Marjorie’s Seedling variety of late harvesting plum tree. This is a very easy to grow plum with great flavour. Heavy cropper with excellent disease resistance.

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Marjorie’s Seedling is a late harvesting variety of plum tree. It is a very easy to grow plum with great flavour and excellent disease resistance that produces heavy crops of large purple fruits. It is Self Fertile and a Late Harvester.

Doing well and looking very healthy though no fruit yet.

Hello Joan, Plums are prone to loads of different pests and diseases, and unfortunately I have not been able to diagnose what is troubling yours from your description. If however you go on to a specialist fruit suppliers website like Ken Muir which has an excellent section on common pests and diseases. Then click on Ask Ken, select Plums in Ken's Clinic and then from the descriptions and photos he has on the site you may be able to find out more. I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

What is wrong with my Plum? I have a Victoria plum tree (fan trained) and this year there is quite a good crop of plums, but many have turned into something more like prunes - rather sticky and purple coloured, with off-white coloured spots all over. Is there anything that I can do about this, perhaps for next year?

It sounds like your plum may have Brown Rot. The Brown Rot fungi affects almost all top fruits, particularly apples, pears, plums, peaches and nectarines. The fungi Sclerotinia fructigen (on apples) and Sclerotinia laxa (on other host plants) gains entry through injured skin. This initial injury can be caused by pecking birds, cracking due to frost or irregular growth and scab infections. The fungus can spread to adjacent healthy fruit by direct contact, or by insects, birds or rain splash that has come in to contact with the source of infection. Fruit can also contract the disease in storage. DAMAGE Brown Rot occurs as brown decaying patches (which later bear white concentric rings of spores) on ripening fruits. Infected fruits usually drop off, but sometimes remain attached to the tree and become mummified. CONTROL There are no chemicals available to control this disease. However, preventative measures can be taken. All overwintering sources of infection should be removed and destroyed by the early spring. Fallen fruits, mummified fruits and the short section of the spur to which the fruit was attached should be removed and burned immediately. From May onwards the crop should be examined at regular intervals and any infected fruits should be destroyed. Avoid or minimise possible causes of injury to fruits by taking appropriate measures of pest control. Codling Moth is one of the major factors causing injury. The fungus gains easy entry into fruits through bird pecks and wasp bites. Netting will keep birds of the fruit and jam jars hung from trees can be used to trap wasps. Smear a small amount of jam inside the jar and fill it with soapy water. The fungus may also enter the fruit at the site of scab infection so control measures should be implemented against this disease. Fruit thinning will also reduce the spread of Brown Rot from one fruit to the other by contact. Fruit that is put in to storage should be unblemished and checked at regular intervals.

Can I grow a Plum in a large pot ? Can I grow a plum in a large pot - and if so what variety is best?

Most plum trees are grafted, and what rootstock they are grafted onto will determine their eventual height and spread. As the name suggests, plum trees grafted onto Pixie rootstock will produce a dwarfing tree, with an eventual height and spread of just 3 x 3m, so these are the best options for pots. These tend to do very well in large pots, provided they are kept well fed and watered.

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This plant is deciduous so it will lose all its leaves in autumn, then fresh new foliage appears again each spring.

  • Position: full sun
  • Soil: will tolerate most soils, except very chalky or badly drained
  • Rate of growth: slow growing
  • Ultimate size on VVA1 rootstock: 3 x 3m (10x10ft)
  • Ultimate size on St Julien rootstock: 4 x 4m (13x13ft)
  • Flowering period: April to May
  • Flower colour: white
  • Other features: top quality culinary or dessert plum (late September)
  • Hardiness: fully hardy

An upright, vigorous tree which produces large, sweet purple plums late in the season. It is a popular variety that has cup-shaped white flowers later than most, reducing the risk of the blossom being killed by late frosts. The versatile fruit can either be eaten fresh or used for cooking, and is fairly juicy with yellow flesh. It is a self-fertile tree that is wonderful plum for a small garden.

Garden care: When planting incorporate lots of well-rotted garden compost in the planting hole and stake firmly.
Stone fruits like the plums should be pruned in the summer because they are prone to a disease called Silver Leaf which enters through cuts. If you prune in late summer, the sap is slowing but is still running fast enoughenough to seal up any wounds. Check and remove any damaged, diseased or broken branches.

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