How to Plant an Italian Plum Tree


The Italian plum is the most common variety of plum available in the United States. The large, oblong purple fruit is sweet and good for eating straight from the tree. The Italian plum tree is a smaller tree, reaching heights up to 12 feet, and winter hardy, making it a great fruit tree for colder climates. Its pink and white blooms appear in mid-spring to mid-summer and it bears fruit in the fall about three to five years after planting.

Step 1

Amend your soil before planting the plum tree so it is well-draining. Add in peat moss or compost to your soil and mix well.

Step 2

Dig a hole as deep as the root ball is high and twice the width of the root ball. Sprinkle a handful of bonemeal in the bottom of the hole. This helps the roots get established more quickly after planting. If planting more than one tree, plant at least 12 feet apart.

Step 3

Place the tree in the hole. Be sure the top of the root ball is level with the ground surface. Fill in the hole with the soil, tamping down the soil as you go to help eliminate any air pockets.

Step 4

Water your tree well after planting. Keep your plum tree watered well during the first year after planting. Water deeply once or twice a week using a slow trickle rather than shallow, frequent watering.

Step 5

Add a layer of mulch such as straw or bark in a four-foot diameter around your tree. This holds in moisture and keeps weeds and grass down.

Things You'll Need

  • Peat moss or compost
  • Bonemeal
  • Mulch
  • 10-10-10 fertilizer


  • Taylor's Master Guide to Gardening Book; Houghton Mifflin Co.; 1994
  • Step-by-Step Successful Gardening Book; Better Homes and Gardens; 1987
Keywords: Italian plum trees, planting, growing

About this Author

Amy Madtson has been writing primarily childbirth-related articles for 15 years. Her experience includes teaching childbirth education and providing labor assistance since 1993, and her goal is to educate women about their options during the childbearing years. Madston's writings have appeared in both online sources and local area publications.