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Pluots

Pluots, in the simplest sense, are hybrids of plums and apricots. Floyd Zaiger first developed the Pluot in the 1980s, going through multiple generations of plum x apricot hybrids until he was satisfied with the end product. While the fruit hybrid is commonly known as Pluot, a few people know that Pluot is actually a registered trademark. This was done by Zaiger to differentiate his hybrid from all of the other apriums, apriplums, or plumcots (all plum x apricot hybrids) in the market. To bring it down to the most basic level, Pluots are basically 75% plum and 25% apricot when it comes to taste, texture, size, and appearance.

  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Order: interspecific
  • Family: interspecific
  • Genus: interspecific
  • Species: interspecific
  • Binomial name: Prunus domestica x prunus armeniaca / Pluot® Interspecific Plums

Pluot Trivia

  • Pluots don’t have the bitterness that is present in plums.
  • Pluot varieties have fun names like Candy Stripe, Dapple Dandy, Flavor King, and so on.
  • Pluots were hand-pollinated and crossbred naturally; no artificial genetic modification was involved in development with Pluots.
  • The Pluot is well on its way to becoming a genericized trademark, much like Aspirin, Xerox, Band-Aid, Kleenex, and a whole lot more.

Pluot Buying Guide

Since Pluots are basically 75% plum, it is also safe to say that buying Pluots should be like buying plums. Pluots should be fragrant and firm with a little give when you press or squeeze them. A rule of thumb when choosing Pluots is that the color should be vibrant. The more vibrant the Pluot’s color, the sweeter they will be.

Avoid Pluots that are overly hard as there is a chance that they won’t ripen properly.

Pluot Production & Farming in Texas

Pluot production in Texas is minimal due to their being sensitive to winters and their susceptibility to bacterial canker infestation. Those trees that have survived these problems have produced very poor crops.

The only successful Pluot production in Texas is limited to small specialized growers who grow the Pluots in greenhouses. The output of these specialized growers is very limited in volume and usually goes to local markets and farmers’ markets in and around Texas.

Pesticides:

Records have shown that in commercial Pluot production, an average of 1.63 pounds of chemicals and pesticides are used per acre of fruit trees. While no studies have been done specifically on Pluots on pesticide residue, it is safe to assume that they have the same pesticide residues as plums. Plums are considered one of the fruits that are on EWG’s Dirty Dozen list.

The good thing is that in Texas, most of the Pluot producers are specialized growers who grow their fruits in carefully controlled greenhouse environments, minimizing or even eliminating the need for the use of pesticides.

Geography:

According to Texas A&M, growing Pluots or any type of Plum-Apricot hybrid is not recommended in Texas. The reason for this is because these hybrids have not been designed to grow in Texas, and they are very susceptible to local diseases and pests that were not considered when they were being developed.

For those that want to grow Pluots in Texas, a greenhouse environment is not only recommended, but it is required.

Packaging:

Since Pluots are basically plums, harvesting and packing of Pluots are similar to those of Plums. They are packed in plastic clamshell boxes to protect them during transport and on store shelves. Bulk packaging also entails the use of large amounts of foam padding for protection.

Enjoying Pluots

Pluots are great for eating raw and fresh. They can be consumed as you would a normal plum but with the added benefit of having a smaller pit/stone.

Unlike plums, the skins of Pluots are pretty sweet, and a lot of people find this palatable compared to the tart plum skins.

Storage:

Ripe Pluots can survive on the countertop for a couple of days. If you want to extend the life of your Pluots, you can store them inside the refrigerator for up to a week.

Cooking:

Heated applications of Pluots are the same with apricots. They do great in tarts, cakes, crisps, and pies. They also make excellent toppings for ice cream, desserts, and salads.

Nutrition:

Since Pluots are a relatively new variant of the fruit, not many studies have been done on their nutritional values.

  • Carbs
    • The parent fruits, plums, and apricots have glycemic loads of 2 and 1, respectively. It is safe to assume that Pluots will have a low glycemic load as well. For people with diabetes, it is a good idea to check your sugar levels after Plucot consumption to be on the safe side.
  • Fiber
    • One 100g serving of Pluots contains around 3g of soluble fiber, which is approximately 10% of the RDI.
      • Consuming soluble fibers can help with overall gut health and can help ease the symptoms of constipation.
    • Vitamins and minerals:
      • Very little information is available on the vitamin and mineral content of Pluots. Still, since it is basically 75% plum and 25% apricot, it is safe to assume that they provide the same (or at least similar) levels of vitamins and minerals as a plum or apricot.
      • There have been estimates that Pluots provide around 10% of the RDI of Vitamin C, similar to those of plums.

Nutrition

DV%

  • Serving Size: 1 Serving
  • Calories: 30 1.7
  • Carbs: 7.5g 3%
  • Sugar: 6.5g
  • Fiber: 0.9g 4%
  • Protein: 0.5g
  • Fat: 0.2g 0%
  • Saturated Fat: 0g 0%
  • Trans Fat 0g 0%
  • Cholesterol 0mg 0%
  • Sodium 0mg 0%
  • Vitamin C 10%
  • Vitamin A 4.6%
  • Calcium 0.3%
  • Iron 0.6%
  • Postassium 104mg 3%
  • Vitamin B6 6%
  • Folate 80%
  • Magnesium 4%

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