SARE Research Synopsis
|Growers and researchers share information about beach plums, Coonamessett Farm Demonstration Planting, Falmouth, MA.|
As a result of SARE funding, we have found that commercial production of beach plum is possible in the Northeastern U.S. by use of standard orchard production techniques. Beach plum can be grown with cultural methods that are used for commercial plum varieties on soil with good drainage. Wild genetic resources for long-term crop improvement have been collected and are being evaluated for fruit quality and disease resistance at several locations across the Northeast. Marketing research has shown that both consumers and gourmet chefs have interest in beach plum products and we have qualified the parameters needed for success in the respective markets. Beach plum plants have been distributed to more than 40 growers and cooperative extension researchers across the Northeast for production and evaluation. Growers and producers have met and begun a dialogue, which has lead to the formation of an industry consortium. The accumulated knowledge of nine years of research will be passed on to the grower consortium for further action at the discretion of the steering committee.