Red flesh plum for zone 5

I’m looking for recommandations for red flesh plum for zone 5.
I already have a young black ice plum tree.

I could order one of these 4 varieties:

Purple heart, Elephant heart, Methley, Satsuma.

Which one would be the best for me in zone 5?? and de second best? Are they very similar or different?

Thanks :slight_smile:


Those may do really good for you in montreal as asian plums are zone hardy for 5 but most bloom too early. As long as you don’t get early wake ups or late frosts they should work. Personally elephant heart is my favourite asian plum but it flowers too early here. Incredibly juicy flavorful tart and sweet its great. Satsuma is really good eating also if its picked ripe in California, I only know how EH does climate wise. Would you rather a reliable bearing fruit (maybe a plums isnt the right choice?) or crazy good plums when you get a lucky year?

I’m looking for something in the middle :slight_smile: I can accept that some years I won’t a plum because a late frost, but I would like to have fruit not only one year out of five.

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Of the plums you listed, Satsuma is not that cold hardyDave Wilson lists it zone 6-9. My experience is that its flower buds are not very cold hardy.

Elephant Heart, Purple Heart and Methley are rated for at least zone 5.

I have fruit Satsuma, Elephant Heart and Methley. Elephant Heart wins handsdown. Large, juicy, delicious. No tartness that I detected.

Methley is medium sized and good tasting. I have not fruited Purple Heart but it is the most cold hardy among these varieties.


Thanks a lot for your comments :slight_smile:

Just spit balling here but you may want to think about how your black ice will be pollinated. If it is alone i dont know it any of the plums you mentioned will help.

I grafted several other plums on black ice: Toka, crescent, superior, kahinta, burbank. I’m also getting shiro this spring. I hope one of those will do the pollinisation.


Very nice. Was it a challenge to get the grafts to take? I have a few hybrids i was thinking about trying this with come spring.

Most of my graft succed, but it’s their first winter. I’ll see in spring if they really passed trought their first year.

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I was actually going to reccomend superior but you had said you want a red fleshed variety. I dont really know of a later blooming asian plum that is red fleshed. Superior tastes much better than i expected. You will have better luck than me at getting harvest of asian plums but also possibly think of dapple dandy or some pluots as options.


I’ll graft dandy sweet and taylor gold plumcot this spring.


In a colder climate like zone 5 and 6, most Asian plums seem to have overlapping blooms. I have15+ varieties on 2 trees. They seem to bloom within a week of one another.

Asian plums where I live bloom about a week before Euro plums.

My EH was grafted to a Euro plums. It has set fruit without any issue.

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Hi @gdostie-montreal - fellow montrealer here and on the plum quest! What did you decide and how did it turn out? Also - curious where you are getting your scion!

You’ve basically just described (almost) what I have in mind for an old plum with Toka already grafted. I chipped Shiro last summer and have almost everything you have listed on order or already in my fridge.

Keep me posted please!!