Is this an example of microclimate?

Here is my 3 year old espaliered Stanley plum.
I’m looking almost due north as taking the picture just from Tacoma, WA (30ish miles SSW of Seattle). The plums in the branch closet to the fence are various shades of purple whereas the rest are green. The purple ones are getting less sun than all the other plums. That branch is only like 2” closer than all the rest.


The fence is wood. The thermal mass/battery of wood i though was negligible.

Whenever some of my plums turned purple way ahead of the rest, I got nervous. For me, most of the time those were the ones damaged by bugs which sped up a ripening process.

Hope your case is a microclimate thing.

Maybe it’s been sipping on that energy drink. Or the afternoon sun reflects off of the can at just the right angle to provide extra light to that one branch.
All I know for certain is that’s one good looking tree.

It’s an example of a nanoclimate.

I agree. It’s a beautiful tree…!!

Thank you. I’m still learning. Still don’t know the difference between structural wood and fruiting wood, I’m sure I could do better. But I have already thinned about 6-8x what I kept.


Is it possible there is more than one variety grafted? I ask because whole branches seem to have uniform color.

Maybe you have a limb sport that ripens earlier. That would be something neat to graft to see if it continues expressing the trait.

Nope. That branch is younger than the others.

I don’t understand what you mean.

It’s possible that you have one branch that has genetically mutated from the rest of the tree to express an earlier ripening characteristic. That is how there are so many slightly different “Macintosh” apples that exist, if I understand correctly. All technically the same but technically a little different, whether different ripening times or other characteristics slightly altered.

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