Thinking about wild type plums from Oikos

I’m thinking about ordering some wild type plums, probably from Oikos (maybe a beach plum, their “wild goose plum,” their “dunbars plum,” maybe another chickasaw…) in hopes that I might be able to grow even something tiny and fit just for jam, etc. no-spray in my hot, humid, late freeze prone zone 7 NC location. What do you all think might be worth trying? The beach plum sounds most promising, especially based on Edible Landscaping’s recommendation and remarks about blooming late and developing at a season that misses PC, although I’m concerned about my climate being too hot for their liking. Oikos makes the wild goose and dunbars sound good, too, but those are Michigan recommendations.

I also already have a ‘Guthrie’ chickasaw that might be a good candidate for resistance to rots and moderate resistance to insects in the years it can escape late spring freezes (which hasn’t really happened in the 5 or so years it’s been blooming, although somehow it still looks okay this year even after 21 degrees while it was in heavy bloom a little over a week ago – it seems like much higher temps completely zapped it in previous years.) I had a seedling chickasaw planted with it, but after growing well and getting up to 3 or 4" in diameter it just randomly broke over at the ground. It did send up a sucker last year, but I’m not sure the sucker is going to make it, so I suppose I need another chickasaw for a pollinator to even give my Guthrie a chance. Are there any improved chickasaws or chickasaw hybrids I could use for a pollinator?

I’ve got a chickasaw that I grew from local (West Georgia, 7b) seed a few years ago that’s healthy and produces some sour fruit. Earlier this year I ordered both a Guthrie and Odom chickasaw plum from Their service, prices, plant health, and roots were all impressive. The Odom bloomed a bit earlier than the Guthrie, and I don’t see it on their website any more. Here’s the description from their facebook page

“Check out this new great plum, Prunus angustifolia ‘Odom.’ We have been watching it for about 5 years before offering it, and it is GREAT! No disease problems, nice red, sweet, crisp fruit. ‘Odom’ ripens about 3 weeks after Prunus angustifolia ‘Guthrie’ (a nice variety that we also offer). SO, plant both varieties and your fruit season will be extended by a month or so. YUM! (I’m not going to admit how many I ate while I was snapping this pic)”

I’ve got no idea what the quality of the fruit will be like, or if like you they will get zapped by late freezes. However, I’ll be glad to send you some scionwood if the plants put on some growth.

I’ve read about old improved chickasaw varieties from the early 1900s, but never found any for sale. Like you I’ve contemplated ordering some different plums from Oikos but the climate difference between here and Michigan has led me not to.

Chickasaw is the only plum worth bothering with here, IME. I tried several Euro & Japanese hybrids, including several of the AU selections(but they came from TyTy, so who knows if they were even ‘as advertised’) through the years…total failure
I have a locally-collected yellow-fruited selection - good sized fruits, with Guthrie grafted into it, and another clump nearby from a tiny seedling/sucker I rescued from the cowpasture when we first moved here - that makes smaller, red-skinned fruits.

I’ve ordered a number of plants from Ken at OIKOS through the years, and all have done well. Only plums I got from him were a couple of beach plums. One fruited a couple of times, but has died out. The other one is still growing strong, but has never fruited - blooms, but I guess it and the Chickasaws don’t bloom at the same time.

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