Kirke's Blue plum trees

Kirke's Blue plum tree
  • Pick: Mid-season (early September)
  • Flowering group: 3
  • Uses: Eat fresh 
  • Disease-resistance: Good
  • Pollination partners

Kirke's Blue is a classic large-fruited English plum from the Victorian era with an attractive blue/purple skin. It is noted for its excellent traditional rich plum flavour.

Kirke's Blue ripens in mid-September in southern England, making it a mid-season plum.

If you want to make your own dried plums (prunes) this is a good variety to start with.

Kirke's Blue plum trees for sale

Sorry we have not been able to produce any trees of this variety this season.

We may still be able to propagate it to order for you. Please contact us for more details.

Summary features of Kirke's Blue


  • Gardening skill: Average?
  • Cropping: Light
  • Fertility: Not self-fertile?
  • Flowering group: 3?
  • Pollinating others: Average?
  • Ploidy: Diploid?
  • Vigour: Slightly small?
  • Bearing regularity: Regular?
  • Growth habit: Spreading
  • Fruit persistence: Normal ripening?
  • Overall disease resistance: Good?
  • Plum pox virus: Some resistance?



  • Country of origin: United Kingdom
  • Period of origin: 1800 - 1849
  • Fruit colour: Purple - light
  • Blossom colour: White
  • Leaf colour: Green


  • Warm climates?
  • Temperate climates
  • Tolerates cold winters
  • Planting position: Full sun preferred

Pollination guide for Kirke's Blue

Kirke's Blue is in flowering group 3. Kirke's Blue is self-sterile and needs to be pollinated by another tree of a different variety nearby. Since it flowers in the middle of the blossom season it can be pollinated by most other plum trees.

How to grow Kirke's Blue plum trees

Kirke's Blue would almost certainly have become a popular commercial variety had it not been for its relatively light cropping. However for the gardener this can be an advantage because light-cropping plums often have the richest and most intense flavours.

The tree is of average vigour and tends to grow in a spreading fashion. This and the potential excellence of flavour make it a good choice for wall-training on a south-facing wall.

Historical details

Kirke's Blue was named by Joseph Kirke, a nurseryman from the Brompton district of London who first propagated it in the 1830s and subsequently promoted it. However its origins are unknown - Kirke stated he first saw the fruit for sale on a market stall and tracked down the original tree to Norfolk, but this is not certain. It soon became a popular variety in Victorian gardens.

Botanical name

Prunus domestica 'Kirke's Blue'

UK-grown trees All our trees are grown in the UK.