Page author: David Giblin
Prunus americana
American plum, wild plum
WTU specimens
Other herbaria

Distribution: Northeast Canada and United States, occasionally west to Montana and Utah; rare in Washington.

Habitat: Along watercourses, and on open or wooded, moist or dry areas from the plains into the lower mountains.

Flowers: April - May

Origin: Introduced

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Shrub or small tree, 1-10 m. tall, some of the branches sharp-pointed, the bark deep brownish-purple.


Leaves alternate, deciduous, the petioles stout, pubescent, 5-12 mm. long, the blades lanceolate to elliptic, acuminate, acute at the base, serrate, glabrous, often hairy beneath, 4-10 cm. long.


Flowers 2-4 in umbels, the pedicels slender; calyx reddish tinged, the 5 lobes 2.5-3.5 mm. long, about equal to the tube, pubescent on the upper surface, oblong-lanceolate, serrulate; petals 5, white, elliptic-oblong, 7-9 mm. long; stamens about 25; pistil 1, simple.


Drupe orange to purplish-red, the flesh yellow, 1.8-2.5 cm. long.

Accepted Name:
Prunus americana Marshall
Publication: Arbust. Amer. 111. 1785.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Prunus domestica L. var. americana Castiglioni
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Prunus americana in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Prunus americana checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Prunus americana atlas page.

CalPhotos: Prunus americana photos.

USDA Plants: Prunus americana information.

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