Sandhill Plum –

sandhill plums

Sandhill Plum –

When you hear the word “plum” you think of a store-bought, purple-red sweet plum.  They are raised in cultivated orchards.  Sandhill plums grow wild in the bar ditch.  They are quarter-size, sour-then-sweet native fruit.  In western states around Texas they can be found in sandy ranchland.  Our best spot is on the side of the road where we spend a whole morning picking each summer.

Every year the amount of plums we get is different.  The small trees that produce the plums do not produce in a drought year, or if the hail or bugs are heavy in the spring.  Late frost will kill them all too.  Some years we only get enough to make a couple jars of jelly, others we have enough to last us two years.  The jelly has a beautiful red color that shines when you hold it up to a window.

Just like the Indians, the eager pioneers who came to Texas in the 1800’s had to use any type of food they could get their hands on.  Plums were a great option, and a change from their regular meal of old jerky.  Actually, jerky and sandhill plums all the time doesn’t sound too bad.

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