Is the Seed from a Plum Tree Inside the Pit?

Written by noelle carver
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Is the Seed from a Plum Tree Inside the Pit?
Plums are known as "drupes," fruits that encase a hard pit-seed. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

The fruit off a plum tree contains the seed at the centre of its flesh, inside a pit. The plum, as well as the peach, nectarine, cherry and others, are considered "stone fruits" because of the stone-like pit at their middle. The seed forms while the fruit forms, so that the flesh protects the seed from damage.


A drupe is a fruit or nut which encases a pit and seed within its hard, or fleshy, skin. The outer layer of the plum has a thin, latex-like skin. This outer skin is the protect the ovary wall, which is the fleshy part of the plum. The middle layer of the plum is the thickest, juiciest part which is so attractive and succulent to eat. The inner layer of the plum, and other stone fruits, is the pit, also called a putamen.

Inside the Pit

Inside the pit, a plum usually carries one seed, but it can also carry up to three. However, only one seed will fully develop inside the pit. The seeds inside the pit usually fall to the ground and plant themselves, are eaten by animals which then leave behind or excrete the seeds or are planted by human hands.

Harvest a Seed

When the plum is fully mature, you can enjoy the fleshy fruit and then pop out the pit. Take the seed out of the pit. Plant the seed in the fall or in the spring. Planting the plum seeds two-inches deep keep them firmly planted in the ground.

Types of Plums

Gardeners and horticulturists have categorised plums into three different types: European, Damson and Japanese. European plums are ideal for eating straight from the tree, and for canning, according to horticulturalist Richard C. Funt with the Ohio State University Extension. Damson plums, which are the traditional purple coloured, are sour or tart and are mostly used for cooking. Japanese plums, from which sake is made, mostly taste sweet or tangy. The Japanese variety grow healthiest and produce the tastiest fruits in Japan.

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