Plums, raw

Fun Facts

  1. Plum tree cultivation didn’t arrive in the U.S. until the mid-19th century. More than 140 varieties are sold in the U.S., and globally, thousands – mostly Russia, China, and Romania. Varieties include the Santa Rosa, Satsuma, Brooks, and Parsons, as well as lower-case names like yellow egg and green gage.
  2. Some plum trees are fruit-bearing and some aren’t. (Interestingly, the fruit-bearers develop little white flowers, while solely ornamental trees get pink flower clusters.) The two main fruit-bearing trees are the European “clingstone” variety, best for eating fresh or for sauce, jam, or juice; and the Oriental, a “freestone” type with fruit best suited for eating fresh, drying, and canning.
  3. Plum and apricot pits, apple and quince seeds, and almonds contain a chemical compound called amygdalin, made up of glucose, benzaldehyde, and cyanide. It’s a controversial substance, used to make the patented drug Laetrile (Amigdalina B-17 or vitamin B17).

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