Sue Ketner Gelarden

Mexican plum (Prunus Mexicana)

Dedicated in memory of Sue Ketner Gelarden (April 11, 1945 – February 28, 2023) by her colleagues in Education for Ministry 

Biography to come.

Description: Mexican plum tree is a single-trunked tree native to North America that grows 15-35 feet tall and spreads to 25 ft.  It provides a beautiful spring display of fragrant, white flowers which may produce dark red or purple fruit in the fall.  The tree forms an irregular canopy and has thorny branches.  The deciduous leaves turn a showy orange color in fall before dropping. 

Leaves: Simple, alternate, up to 2-4 inches long, ovate to narrower shape with serrate markings.

Flowers: Abundant, fragrant, white flowers appear before the leaves in March or April   

Fruit type:  drupe, fleshy round 1-3 inches, red or purple color

Habitat: Will grow in sun to part shade.  Generally low water requirements, this particular tree grows with no additional watering.  Prefers dry to moist, well-drained soils.  It is cold tolerant.  The tree’s native habitat is dry to moist thin woods, river bottoms and prairies.

Wildlife Value: The plums attract birds, mammals.  The nectar attracts bees.  

Uses: This is an attractive, aromatic, showy accent tree.