Spring 2022We are now accepting pre-orders for delivery from September onwards for pot-grown trees and December onwards for bare-rooted trees.
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Rivers' Early Prolific plum trees

Prunus domestica
Rivers' Early Prolific is listed in the RHS Plants for Pollinators
Early Prolific is a very heavy-cropping early-season plum, raised by the famous Rivers nursery.
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Rivers' Early Prolific plum trees for sale

Pot-grown

All pot-grown trees are suitable for planting out in the garden, some are suitable for growing in containers.

  • PG12-year bush-trained 12L pot-grown tree VVA-1 rootstock £55.00
    Medium tree (2m-3m after 10 years)
    Out of stock
    Please try next season
  • PG22-year bush-trained 12L pot-grown tree St. Julien rootstock £54.00
    Large tree (3m-4m after 10 years)
    Out of stock
    Please try next season

Bare-root

  • BR11-year bare-root tree VVA-1 rootstock £34.75
    Medium tree (2m-3m after 10 years)
  • BR22-year bush-trained bare-root tree VVA-1 rootstock £43.50
    Medium tree (2m-3m after 10 years)
  • BR31-year bare-root tree St. Julien rootstock £32.50
    Large tree (3m-4m after 10 years)
  • BR42-year bush-trained bare-root tree St. Julien rootstock £41.50
    Large tree (3m-4m after 10 years)
  • BR52-year half-standard bare-root tree St. Julien rootstock £46.00
    Large tree (3m-4m after 10 years)
  • BR61-year bare-root tree Brompton rootstock £34.50
    Very large tree (4m-7m after 10 years)
Next deliveries

Pre-order now for delivery from September onwards for pot grown trees or December for bare-root trees and mixed orders.

Delivery charges

Delivery for a single tree starts at £9.95. It is calculated when you add trees to your basket, based on your postcode.

An attractive English plum, sometimes known as Early Rivers, or, mistakenly, as a "river plum". Rivers' Early Prolific is, as the name suggests, an early and heavy-cropping plum. Rated by the Victorian fruit enthusiast Hogg as "a great bearer, and very hardy, rarely ever missing a crop".

It is dual-purpose, but arguably better for culinary purposes. (For dessert purposes, Opal is probably better).

Rivers' Early Prolific is easy to grow and crops reliably.

How to grow

Rivers' Early Prolific is unusual for a plum tree in that it grows with a slightly "pendulous" habit - somewhat reminscent of an upright weeping willow. The trunk will eventually reach the normal proportions but the branches and twigs always stay disproportionately thin.

Cropping potential is often greater than the branches can bear, so thinning of the fruit and/or branch supports may be necessary.

Like some of its offspring (e.g. Czar) Rivers' Early Prolific can also tolerate shade.

Somewhat counter-intuitively, whilst Rivers's Early Prolific crops heavily, it is not a vigorous tree, and tends to be small or average size.

Advice on fruit tree pollination.

History

Rivers' Early Prolific was raised by the famous Thomas Rivers nursery in Hertfordshire, UK, in the 1830s. It was developed from an early-season French plum variety called Precoce de Tours.

It was grown commercially in the UK for a period, and has also been used to breed a number of other popular plum varieties, including Czar.

Rivers' Early Prolific characteristics

Growing

  • Gardening skillBeginner
  • Self-fertilitySelf-fertile
  • Flowering group2
  • Pollinating othersAverage
  • PloidyDiploid
  • Climate suitabilityTemperate climates
  • WildlifeRHS Plants for Pollinators

Using

  • Picking seasonEarly
  • CroppingHeavy
  • Keeping (of fruit)1-3 days
  • Food usesEating freshCulinary
  • Flavour style (apples)Sweet/Sharp

Problems

  • Disease resistanceAverage

Identification

  • Country of originUnited Kingdom
  • Period of origin1800 - 1849
  • Fruit colourBlue - dark

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