Anyone grow Ozark Premier Plum?

I know Starks Brothers, Tractor supply, Gurney’s, and others sell this plum so I’m hoping some of you grow it? Do you?

This has been one of the most frustrating plums I have ever grown, and I actually have two of them. What happens is that my trees get absolutely loaded each year, and most of the plums hang on until they are HUGE - the biggest plums I grow. But then a strange think happens just about when they start to ripen. Even though they’ve been well sprayed with both insecticide and fungicide, they almost all develop a spot somewhere on the fruit. This spot becomes hard and concave- meaning it sort of forms a rounded crevice. THen it starts to turn purple (this is while the rest of the fruit is still green) and then that hard, purple, concave area begins to spread- or at least the purple color does. In this respect it acts like a plum that has a bird peck or PC bite and that bite or bad spot turns colors and starts to spread. However, in the case of almost all my Ozark plums that do this, there is no visible damage or peck or bite or anything other than a small, hard, sunken in area and then the spreading of the purple color. Eventually it causes the plums to drop, much like any other bad spot on a plum would do.

I end up getting almost no fruit at all due to this bizarre phenomenon! Has anyone else had this experience? I might even think it was hail damage but I know for a fact there has been no hail and its happened both of the 2 years these trees have been old enough to fruit.

Anyway, this one is a real mystery to me. If anyone has any idea why this may be happening to this one variety of plums (even if you dont grow it) I’d sure love to hear your thoughts. Thanks

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Please Scroll down to the Bacteria Spot entry.
Plum and prune | Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation.

Does it look like the problem your plums have?

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No, def not. But I just spent a long time reading that whole publication and loved it, so thanks for sending it. I learned a lot from that!

I’ll post photos asap of my strange issue.


Kevin, I have two Ozark Premier plums trees and it is a good plum.
I think from what you describe you have a Trips (Frankliniella occidentalis) attack.
Tell me if the damages are similar to those in this photograph.


Or this other




Thank-you so much, Jose, for taking the time to try and help. Unfortunately that is NOT whatever I have going on, but I was still grateful to get an overall positive report on these plums. Its great to know that if I can resolve my strange and mysterious problem, I;ve got a good plum on my hands. I already loved the large size, but hearing they taste good is great news.

I’m off work this morning so I’m going to go get some photos. Its VERY VERY hard for folks to try and help without seeing my problem, and I apologize for not posting photos originally. SHould have some within the hour. Thanks again.


Ozark Premier is very good plum, but it has a quirk.
You must harvest it when it is sweet but firmly, if you forget and leave the harvest on the tree
a few days more, the flesh tends to get pasty.

If you like that kind of Japanese plums of heavy-caliber of fruits , I recommend the Primetime variety, it’s much better than Ozark Premier.



Kevin, I hope I’m not right but it sounds somewhat like Plum Pox Virus? Plum Pox Potyvirus Diseases of Stone Fruits


My friend, I fear that a young organic cattle farmer from Switzerland MIGHT have just solved my mystery! And without even having the photos I’m just now getting around to posting. Of course I hope you are wrong, and after reviewing lots of information on Plum Pox since getting your post I still am not 100% sure you are right, but I think its a pretty good chance.

So, to everyone who is trying to help me, please take a look at these photos and see if you think its Plum Pox or something else. Thanks!

Every single one of these are of a different piece of fruit even though they look very similar. The “dent” or concave area is hard but shortly after it appears the fruit starts to prematurely ripen, then spoil. Almost every fruit is affected this way. Because of the concave shape I first thought it might be stinkbug bites, and it does look a LITTLE bit like the “cat facing” that can be caused by stinkbugs, But that wouldn’t explain why the affected area is hard or why it causes the fruit to prematurely ripen and spol. My experience with stink bug bites is that they cause deformities but otherwise the fruit matures and ripens normally. But once again, I’m not sure. So I’m open to all ideas!


That very last photo is good for showing how this thing progresses. First these little concave “dents” form, usually when the fruit is nearing its final unripe size. Then a week or two later, those little dents start to prematurely ripen the fruit, starting at the site of the dent. It you look in the last photo you will see it is turning the purple color of a ripe fruit and its only ripening at the site of the dent- which is why they are a bit purple. That ripe, purple area will start to spread over the whole and within a week the fruit will look ripe outside but really isn’t ripe. Then soon it will start to go bad. If it softens before it falls, it will mostly be soft around the dents, but its an artificial softeness- meaning its from rot, not ripeness. SO it tastes awful at the soft area around the dent while the rest of the fruit isn’t ripe below the now purple looking skin.

OK, fellow growers…what have we here?

@Jose-Albacete @Oepfeli @mamuang


Um. Not so fast USDA. You might want to come see my trees…

The following link is to a big announcement by the USDA that Plum Pox Virus has been completely eradicated in the USA


I have read this announcement as well and while I would be very happy for the US if it were true I’m a little sceptical if the true eradication is really possible.

Anyway, what I find curious is that you say that you have had this Problem with the Ozark plum for years. Since PPV is spread by aphids I would find it atypical that no other tree has symptoms… Obviously I don’t know your spray routine, but I find it unlikely that there would never be any aphids to spread it…

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If it is plum pox, I suggest you contact your extension office and ask them to verify it. If it is, they need to know and help you with it.

Have you send scionwood of this tree to any members? They should be notified.


In case you have not seen the link above, have the leaves of the tree in questions look similar to those in this article?


Any progress on ID? A really curious malady. My Ozark Premier grafts from this spring are growing vigorously, so when they fruit in a year or so I will observe.

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I have spent countless hours reading about and looking at photos of plum pox and I am 99.9 % certain that is what I have on that plum and perhaps a couple others. For those who know about plum pox, its a VERY serious disease that scares me a lot more than most. I did take @mamuang s advice and notify my local extension agent but as with every single time I’ve ever contacted him about a fruit related issue, he doesn’t know anything about it and doesn’t seem to be at all interested- even when I tried to explain how serious it can be. He promised to pass it on the the University of TN people but if I don’t hear anything soon I’m going to reach out to them and others myself. From everything I’ve seen, plum pox is the kind of thing that could seriously affect stone fruit crops in the USA and if I have it I just feel like it ought to be known- especially when the government is bragging about having eradicated it.

Anyway, just wanted to update you guys and let you know I seriously think that is what I have and to tell you I’m taking it seriously and plan to continue doing so. OH…I’ve never given any wood off this tree and haven’t even given ANY stone fruit wood away for 3 years and none of those trees show signs. All that being said, I plan to tell anyone asking for wood from me that I might have plum pox in my orchard and I won’t give any wood from those trees even with a warning. It pains me to say it, but until I get a final diagnosis I don’t really think I should be sending scionwood out at all from any of my stone fruit trees, but if you want something we can talk about it.


Too bad that your local guy does not know anything about it. (several members of this forum have heard about plum pox!!).

Would you to contact Cornell or Penn State Extension Services instead? Cornell has invested time and energy to try to eradicate this disease. Someone there could be interested in this.

Glad you take this seriously.


Kevin, I’m saddened to hear that my (un)lucky guess was probably right. I am very glad to see that you take the issue seriously, because this disease is no joke!

For context, until 2019 Switzerland tried to eradicate PPV (and fireblight). Meaning, if a person had even the slightest suspicion that one of their trees had this disease, they were obligated by law to report this to the municipality. All municipalities were required to have a designated person to diagnose these diseases. If a tree was sick, it had to be culled. There were some municipalities with higher diseases pressure/ and or more orchards, that even had their designated person control private properties and yards for fireblight.

Now it seems that our Government has just given up this fight because you’re no longer obligated to report or even fight this diseases.


I compared the pics of your plums to the pics from @Oepfeli’s and my links, I am not convinced yours had plum pox. Plum pox fruit tend to have spreading discoloration on the outside of the fruit and more of it when you cut fruit open.

Your fruit in your pics esp. the last 3 were mostly dents and spreading discoloration I could see. Do you recall what the inside looked like?

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When you’ve grown fruit in one location for a long time you may begin to believe your experiences are universal- but you are a long way from the U.S. and we have a crazy range of weather. I only manage orchards in about 2 zones and 3 states but varieties can behave much differently just a few feet apart.

Ozark Premier, where I’ve managed it, functions identical to about all other J hybrids I manage. The texture is meatier than most, which along with its size are the two distinctions that I think make it worth growing, although I don’t have it in my own orchard. The fruit falls off the tree here before it becomes mealy, which I think may be synonymous to your usage of pasty. .

I’m in the humid northeast U.S., and here, as M suggests, bacterial spot is a big issue with many types of J. plums- especially if they don’t have good eastern exposure.

Sorry, Cityman, but I’ve not seen your problem. I would submit some fruit to a pathologist employed by your landgrant university if your county’s extension horticulturist is unfamiliar with the disease. Unless, of course, someone on this forum does come up with a near certain diagnosis. That would likely be someone near you.

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No Alan, I did not mean to make a bad criticism about the Ozark Premier variety, which is in fact one of the varieties of Japanese plum that I like the most, what happens is that last year I wasI harvested it too late, and I the overripe pulp of this variety becomes mushy, but Ozark Premier harvested at its optimum is a true marvel (it is a highly commendable variety).
Apart from Ozark Premier, if I have to make a small selection of the varieties of Japanese plums that I like from my orchard, then there are these varieties (and you will see how we coincide).

  • Laroda
  • Owen T
  • Elephant Heart
  • Primetime
  • Crimson Glo (it’s one of my favorites)
  • Emerald Beaut
  • Mariposa (I prefer Mariposa to Satsuma and I have both)
  • The Israelies Ben Dor shark teeth plum varieties (they are all very good)
  • Laetitia
  • Au-Rubrun (I have grafted AU-Producer, and AU-Roadside but they have not yet fruited)
  • Late Blue
  • Tasty Sweet

Of the Japanese plum varieties developed in Europe, some of the Ebony varieties from the Provedo nursery program should be highlighted, and especially these two Italian varieties from the Stonefruit company program.

  • Pink Jewel-11
  • Pink Saturn-5

I like those from Oceania

  • Luisa
  • Lucy

Of Culdevco’s South Africans these are great

  • African Deligth
You have not tried these and they are incredible

  • Flavor Star

  • Ruby Star (this variety is especially good)

These are just some examples of the varieties that I like and in this small selection I could include a lot more.
But I repeat, Ozark Premier is a fantastic plum variety.

I speak only of varieties of Japanese plums, and I do not include interspecific hybrids in the list because I consider them in a different category -



Hi Jose,
With so much info you provide, you could easily teach not just students, but many professors to say the least :smile:
So, as far as I understand, you’ve tried all 3 South African plums? If so, how comparable are they?

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