The Weeping Santa Rosa plums have started ripening over the last week, and the peak harvest time is upon us. This is an especially beautiful tree in any season (e.g. in winter, when its branch structure is clearly visible). But is most beautiful when its graceful branches are laden with ripe fruit.
The fruit is very similar to the standard, and justly famous, Santa Rosa plum developed long ago by Luther Burbank and widely planted. It is not identical, however. If anything, it just might be richer in flavor and certainly firmer in texture with a bit less of Santa Rosa’s characteristic bitterness of skin. It is also low chill, perhaps not quite as low as regular Santa Rosa, but under 400 chill units surely. Due to our very wet spring this year, we’ve had a little problem with brown rot fungus on these (and worse on many peach/nectarine varieties), but not enough to put too serious a damper on the summer fruit feast.