Mirabelle Plums - Are they worth planting?

I have heard different opinions regarding this plum. Some swear by it, while some say it’s just okay, either uninterestingly sweet or kind of tart.

I currently have several types of Euro plums (Green Gage, Mt Royal, Victoria, Stanley) as well as several Japanese plums/pluots. I have one spot for another tree, maybe a combo mirabelle. For those who have tasted mirabelle plums, I would like to ask your opinion on this variety and whether it’s worth adding when space is limited.


(PNW Zone 8b)


I have a Mirabelle, would rather have others, nothing to get excited about. You could add Empress it’s clear stone and larger than Stanley.
Kent wa

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Depends on what you are looking for. Mirabelle is small in size, if you want a big fruit size. Mirabelle does not fit for you. But per my limited experience with Parfumee de Septembre, I have to say that I like its sweetness and flavor very much. I added Mirabelle de Matz and Geneva Mirabelle to extend the harvest season. I can’t wait for them to start fruiting


Z6a here.

My wife had me get two more trees (One A ‘Mirabelle d’Nancy’) after tasting ‘Geneva Mirabelle’. Very good reception from the workmen who happened to be at the house during the season.

We have a fairly short season so late season varieties like ‘Empress’ are out of the question.

An ‘Opal’ that I managed to graft is going in soon. Should help with pollination.

That said, I should have listened to Alan’s advice and planted the ‘Castleton’ first. Larger, more precocious easier to grow and almost as good.


I don’t have Castalton but I have Opal. I’m not very impressed with its flavor or size. But it ripens early, this is an advantage.

Supposedly ‘Geneva Mirabelle’ isn’t a strong pollinator by the way. Still requires a pollinator.

Does mirabelle make superior jam or dried snacks compared to other European plums? The name Parfume de September sounds so fancy.

Yeah, they use it for pastry filling in yerp. To me that would be like using a Mercedes Benz to go camping.

I would definitely give Parfume de Septirmbre a whirl if it fit my season.

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Fresh ate them all before had chance to make it to the jam or dry fruits

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The first time I made mirabelle jam, I thought it was insipid. I like fruit jams that have bold flavors, lots of acidity to balance the sugar.

But after I’d put some up, and broke it out in the winter to eat on biscuits, I grew very fond of it. To me it is very good in applications where honey would be good. It is sweet, and does have a unique, relatively subtle flavor. I don’t always need my taste buds to blow up when eating jam like it does with favorites black currant, honeyberry, raspberry.


Nice to hear! What do you think of the taste of mirabelle plums compared to other Euro plums? Are they really that special?

They get sweeter than most. I like them because they are easy to eat. Dry enough, and fully free stone, cherry size. Very sweet. I can eat a lot of them.

Not necessarily better than other good European plums, but different.

I didn’t think they were great dried.


I have mirabelle plums fruited for me for about 5 years now, Mirabelle Parfume de Septembre and Mirabelle de Nancy.

Both taste very similar, a one note flavor - sweet, but a very good note to me and all my friends and neighbors. De Nancy is a bit larger in size (but still a very small round plum).

I prefer eating them fresh. We made jam from it. It was fine.

Where do you live? My mirabelles in the east coast cracked like crazy if the dry weather followed by rain. One year, I think 80% cracked in that condition.

Get ready for black knot. It has been awful. The only two approaches people use is removing affected branches or using a blow torch to the affected area. No cure for it.

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The tree sets fruit in abundant. If you do not thin them, the tree will go biennial. Ask me how I know.


For me, they are late bloomers, which is a plus.

I don’t see a difference in bloom time among several Euro plums I have. They all bloom about the same time.

However, comparing to Japanese plums, Euro plums bloom about 7-10 days later, which is a plus. This is from Central MA.

That looks gorgeous! I live in Western WA. Spring is wet & summer is dry. Based on what I’ve read so far, mirabelles are good, but perhaps not as tasty as prune d’ente/french improved or the imperial epineuse. I think I might give the spot to one of them instead, and graft mirabelle later.

I have French Improved. They taste somewhat differently.

Mirabelle just simple sweet. French Improved tastes more complex. I am not good at describing taste. I like them both.

Since you are in the northwest, @murky’s advice will be more applicable to you.

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I am also in zone 6a. Empress had no problem ripen here. Unfortunately my first graft died. I regrafted. It is worth growing.

I only have de Nancy and Septembre. Nancy has slightly larger fruit.

I had “Castleton”. It looked like Castleton but ripened weeks later. I doubt if mine was the real Castleton due to ripening time. The quality was inconsistent so I removed mine.

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I hope they taste good. I read they were the sweetest euro plum and ordered 4 4 in 1 from Raintree since their rootstock dwarfs them to 6-10 feet from what I read.