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At first glance, it may not be possible to distinguish between damsons and plums. Nevertheless, both rose plants have different properties. We reveal how you can clearly recognize the sweet energy dispensers.

Common ancestry

Plums are a subspecies of plums. Botanists suspect the common descent from the wild cherry plum (Prunus cerasifera) and the sloe (Prunus spinosa).



  • Size: smaller than plums
  • Shape: small, oblong-oval
  • Colour: dark, bluish to violet
  • inconspicuous furrow (seam)

The reddish flesh is sweet and sour and has a firm consistency. This makes it easy to detach from the core.


  • Shape: evenly round
  • Color: red, blue, purple to black
  • pronounced furrow

Sweet and juicy, ripe plums seduce fruit lovers. Due to their loose consistency, they are difficult to separate from the core. In contrast to damsons, plums have a green-yellow flesh. They also have less sugar.


The delicious fruits are processed in numerous kitchen variations. Plums contain less water than plums. They are better suited for fresh fruit cakes, plum dumplings or fruity desserts.

Due to their soft texture, plums overcook more quickly when heated. They are suitable for making liqueur, compote, groats or jam.

Both fruits can be preserved for many months by drying. They round off the taste of the Christmas roast or the New Year's meal wonderfully. They also stimulate digestion and provide valuable energy during the cold winter months.

Useful information for hobby gardeners

In percentage terms, German markets sell more plums than real plums. Other subspecies of Prunus domestica (plums) are mirabelle plums and greengage. In southern Germany both terms are used differently. A clear differentiation is often not possible.

Since both types of fruit differ primarily in appearance and consistency, a plum can result from the crossing of two plum varieties.


Damsons and plums bloom early. Due to their robust character, they delight in domestic allotments with a lush harvest. Early plums are ripe from mid-July. After the first frost, sweet plums provide a wonderful basis for homemade mousse.

tips and tricks

Both fruits can be kept for a maximum of one week after harvesting. They will keep frozen for up to 12 months.


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