Pluots are not one of the fruits that you see in grocery stores everyday. Pluots are hybrid fruits that are part plum and part apricot. Common names include "plumcots" and "dinosaur eggs." The Flavor King Pluot® stands out among the more than 20 Pluot tree hybrid cultivars. Flavour King is a taste-test winner of awards from Dave Wilson Nurseries of Modesto, California, which is one of the largest fruit tree growers in the United States.
Origins and Trademark Ownership
Flavour King is relatively new on the fruit scene. The plant was only introduced in 1989 by Floyd Zaigler, who owns the Pluot and Flavor King trademarks. His company, Zaigler Genetics, uses scientific engineering techniques to introduce new fruit hybrids, including Flavor King Pluots. Zaigler exports Flavor King fruit and trees throughout the U.S., Europe, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and South America. Dave Wilson Nurseries holds the licensing to propagate and sell Flavor King Pluot fruit trees.
Classification and Characteristics
Flavour King is classified as an interspecific complex hybrid. The term "interspecific" is used by geneticists and regulatory agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for hybrid fruits developed from two or more species. The dominant parent of the Flavor King Pluot is the plum, which is characterised by the fruit's smooth, plumlike skin. Flavour King is also classified as a complex hybrid. Years of hybridisation and several generations of crosses were used by Zaigler Genetics to develop and produce the Flavor King Pluot tree and its tasty fruit.
Flavour King Trees
Flavour King Pluot trees are fast growers and relatively easy to grow and bear fruit early. It is a three-season plant that blossoms with showy flowers in spring and produces fruit from summer through fall. Trees are cold hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture Plant Hardiness Zones 5 to 9, and very tolerant of wet soil conditions. Flavour King is resistant to root-knot nematodes, often found in climates where the weather is hot and winters are short. Rootstocks for new trees are sold as Myrobalan 29C standard, which will reach a mature height of 15 to 25 feet. Alternatively, you can purchase a citation dwarf rootstock that will reach a mature height of 12 to 18 feet. Flavour King trees are pollinated by Flavor Supreme, Santa Rosa or Late Santa Rosa or Japanese plum tree varieties. Fruit harvest time starts around the middle of August.
Flavour King Fruit
The award-winning taste of Flavor King fruits is sweet and somewhat spicy, just as unique as its hybridised heritage. The fruit shape shows off the plum side of its parentage. The skin is purplish-red, sweet and fragrant. The juicy fruit meat displays Flavor King's interspecific apricot and plum characteristics, ranging in colours from plum red to apricot surrounding the nut. Wash and eat Flavor King as-is. Or, add it to a fruit salad, turn it into homemade jam, or purée and blend it into a cool and refreshing sorbet.