Any experience with Purple Gage plum?


I have doubts about my Purple Gage plum tree. I didn’t pick these plums until Oct 3, and they still weren’t quite ripe. I’m wondering what else they could be. Do Damsons ripen that late? I’ve never eaten a fresh Damson, but based on descriptions these tasted better than I would expect a Damson to taste. I had planted an Italian plum nearby that died. I don’t think I mixed them up but there is always that chance. But would Italians be that late and that small? Is there any chance it is a Purple Gage and just needed more time?

Gauging Green Gage

I don’t know but it looks nice…!!


The gage plums are notoriously shy bearers and savored for the wonderful flavor. They take forever to produce fruit! I fight with my green gage and seldom get many plums from it but they are so good I can’t bring myself to remove it. Purple gage plums are said to be much earlier than the time frame you mentioned(August) I don’t know much about that purple gage other than what I’ve read. Interestingly they are also said to really hang on the tree so I would not rule it out and your plum is a dead ringer for a purple gage


I haven’t had much luck with plums in my area. All of the plums I had have died. The Flavor Grenade and Flavor King Pluots are still alive. They just bloom a little too early.


That looks like a purple gage, congratulations. I finally gave up on mine last year after 12 years of no fruit. It was also in a too-shady spot which compounded the problem. It did produce one or two fruits that did not make it to harvest.

I have had very bad luck getting any gage plums to fruit. Finally I am getting Reine des Mirabelles as of this year, and it is more Gage than Mirabelle. So I am happy :smile:


Scott or anyone else growing Purple Gage, any idea as to the CH’s for this cultivar? I know Green Gage is reported to be between 600-800 CH, which is growable for me. How about Purple Gage? Anyone know by chance?

Patty S.


Hello, We grow purple gages (in Vermont). Ours ripen in mid-end of sept, and they are a lightish purple color, somewhat oblong, and very sweet, with uneven ripening (don’t pick them if they don’t come off easily). The trees fruit fairly heavily, but they are in with a bunch of Europeans so the pollination is good, and we have plenty of chill hrs.

Your picture looks like a dark blue roundish plum which is different than ours. We got the scion from GRIN a long time ago, so I just have their word on its origin.



I planted one from Raintree, 4 years ago. It put on fruit of the same size you mention last year and this year. They are very firm. Is this how they should be? Did your results ever change?


No, my results haven’t changed, but it is a healthy tree and very productive this year. In the past I haven’t let them ripen enough. However, if I compare their not-quite-ripe taste with other plums at the same ripeness stage that I’ve later tried properly, I think they will be a good late season Euro plum. I’m going to try to let them ripen into the second week of October which seems to be the limit for my area. I’m a little bummed out that it appears to not be a Purple Gage. However, I actually have more Gage-type trees than regular dependable euros and I wish it was vice-versa, so if this tree ends up being a smaller, later version of Castleton, I’m ok with that.

Here is a pic of these plums grafted onto another tree with School House and Toka from a few weeks ago, (most are round but some are oblong):


Here is my purple gage from raintree. Did not arrive until April 29th or 30th (dormant), so it is 2 or 3 weeks behind this year at least. It made 2 flowers; the second opened a day after the first and made a plum.


Just an update. The bloom that made this plum opened May 7. I am not sure how much longer it will need. I don’t expect the plum to taste great with such young roots, but I think the wet weather we are having will not be good for it. The later into September we get, the more likely the weather will turn cold and wet. When I buy more plum trees, I will stick with ones that harvest before Autumn. The last week of Summer even seems questionable to me.

Anybody know how far along I may be?