Someday I’ll make a soda can solar heater to use for drying food in the summer and as a passive solar heat source in the winter. To prevent mold, make sure they are absolutely dry before you put them away. It seems that the big box stores will sell anything, even if it isn’t really suited to your climate. Heat 26 oz gin gently, dissolve 2 cups of sugar ( I will try one batch with berry sugar and the other with coconut sugar), put whole plums in jar, make sure plums are covered and … I’ve been gardening in Arizona since 2011 and have learned so many things along the way. Plum trees are susceptible to diseases like crown rot and canker. If you use ascorbic acid, mix it at a rate of 2 1/2 tablespoons of ascorbic acid per 1 quart of water. Blanch apples or apricots by steaming the slices for 5 minutes, and then putting them in ice cold water. At my previous residence in Phoenix, Arizona, I had two plum trees growing. Day 3: Same as Day 2. These work great for me when for some reason, the vacuum sealing method fails. The first things you’re going to need are some good drying racks. Fruiting occurs on spurs that come off of branches. One was that chill hours are an important thing to consider when planting fruit trees. Another way is to take some ventilated boxes and line them with a double-layered cheesecloth. With proper care, it could be doable, so I’m never opposed to giving something a try, but your best bet for success is going to be in the ground. After 5 days of drying in the sun, the fruit is transferred to the shade for final drying. Drying over the stove Half the plums should be spread out on a baking sheet and put on the stove for 2 hours. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. -Warm Dry Place in the Sun- the outdoor temperature should be above 85 degrees with less than 60% humidity. If i don’t have a rack and less manpower and high investment costs, can any other method work quickly in a remote area? It’s a good idea to look for varieties that fruit earlier in the year. To pasteurize using a freezer, simply seal the dried food in freezer plastic bags and place them in a freezer set at 0°F for 48 hours. Hopefully the dollar stores will be carrying the turkey size oven bags that can be used with the solar ovens. Fruits with pits should be halved and pitted, Light-colored fruit like apples, pears and apricots should be soaked in lemon juice or an ascorbic acid wash to prevent browning. Leave to dry in oven 3 hours. For a faster drying, a wooden platform/slab built over fire is used. Stapleton's dehydration process which shows how plums are turned into prunes or dried plums. Your email address will not be published. Sun drying works best in areas such as the southwestern states and the central plains of the U.S. and Canada where dry, clear weather is normal at the height of the produce harvest. The platform (built of the trunk of a betle nut tree), has gaps through which the hot air touches the wooden slab, thereby aiding in drying the figs. Sun dried makes sense. Maybe consider a solar oven to dry and to pasteurize product for long term storage. Borers eat away at the trunk and branches of trees causing dead spots. Your email address will not be published. Shake the containers daily to distribute moisture. The leathery skin and moist flesh provide nutritional benefits. We have sash windows facing south. Turn the oven or dehydrator up to 135 degrees. If the weather is mild and you have the necessary space, you can also put them to dry in the sun. I remember climbing into some trees as a kid in Northern Michigan and feasting on juicy plums. Leave to dry in oven 3 hours. Pasteurization is especially important because it will destroy any insects and their eggs. You can technically make prunes from any plum, but the best are the dry, rather oblong, dark purple plums – if you can find them. Hi I’m Joe, A passionate gardener in the Arizona Desert. Lay the produce in a single layer to ensure even exposure to the sun, which encourages a similar drying rate. Cutting them and removing the pits makes them dry out faster. Hope it works. Garden of Luma is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. While newer methods like electronic dehydrators speed up the process, sun drying is a slow gentle process that can really bring out the flavor of your food. Overall, they can handle a hot, dry climate fairly well, and winters are a breeze. If drying halves or quarters position the pieces on a tray or rack, starting with the cut side facing up. Here are the easy steps to make dried plums (affiliate links included where appropriate): After washing, slice the plums in half all the way around the pit. I’ve never attempted to grow a Plum tree in a container and wouldn’t recommend it. Select Your Sun Drying Location Place the rack in the sun. 6. Gardening Skill Level. When planting my Plum tree, I wanted it to be in a spot that would get ample sun in the summer months, but also be one of the coldest spots in my yard in the winter time. Here in the desert, we want fruit that will ripen as early as possible, so it doesn’t cook through the heat. It does not require the use of any special equipment. I’m currently growing a Sprite-Delight Cherry Plum Tree. Get some cooling racks and set them on cookie sheets. I had no idea that some fruit tree varieties weren’t able to produce fruit on their own. I would say that growing Plum trees in a hot, dry climate takes a beginner to moderate skill level. I soon learned a lot of things that I wish I had known about plum trees, prior to purchasing one. Sometimes copper sprays are needed for things like shot hole on the leaves. I was a newbie to growing fruit trees and had no idea what I was doing. Plums do take some extra care with pruning to get optimal fruit crops. Required fields are marked *. Avoid any grates coated with cadmium or zinc. In the real world, when electricity is no longer available, use a brake bleeder from Harbor Freight. I learned a couple things after planting my Elephant Heart Plum tree. ***To pasteurize using an oven, place the food in a single layer on a tray and then place in an oven preheated to 160°F for 30 minutes***. It’s also a reliable method of preserving food during an emergency. I started Garden of Luma when we moved into our new home in 2016. This tree has two varieties grafted on to it. An Elephant Heart Plum tree has a lot higher requirement for chill hours than what we average in our area. With the right setup, you could preserve pounds of your harvest at no cost at all. Are you sure with the 30 mins in he oven? How to dry plum or make prunes? If it works, it’ll be a lot cheaper than several hundred bucks for a manufactured solar oven. Plums will be wrinkled but still quite juicy when done. It is easy to purchase in a store or on the market in finished form, however, in the production of dried plums in industrial environments, chemicals that are unsafe for human health are often used. After the cut side no longer looks moist, flip the pieces to expose the other side. ... Are you sure you want to logout? Sprinkle liberally with fresh thyme. Using the sun to dry fruits like plums is the oldest known method of food preservation, and making nutritious and delicious dried fruit this way is easy to do.you should dry fruits in strong sunshine, with a minimum temperature of 85 degrees Fahrenheit (30 Centigrade) and low humidity. © 2019 Off Grid Survival - Your source for Everything Survival Related - Hiking, Backpacking, Urban Survival, Tactical News & Survivalist Gear | Legal & Disclaimers. I think stone fruits can be a little more susceptible to fungal and root diseases, which concerns me with trying to grow them in a container. I have around 25 fruit trees and edible fruiting plants along with several raised beds, native plants, herbs, and flowers. Dried prune plums are available both with and without pits, and … Seems a little long. Alternatively bake them at a temperature of around 50 or 60 degrees with the door half closed for a … Step 3 Cutting your fruit into uniform pieces will help them dry more evenly, and at the same speed. Drain and dry the fruit. • Cut in half and remove the stones. Even though it doesn’t sound like it will be as cherry like as I hoped, I’m still excited about this tree. Keep everything together—mushrooms with mushrooms, apricots with apricots, etc. Pretreating Fruit: Most fruits need some type of preparation before the drying process can begin. Food Self-Sufficiency, Off the Grid, Sustainable Living Blog It’s actually a cross between a Japanese plum and cherry-plum, which is closer to a traditional plum. Archeological sites in ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia show this method of food preservation has been used since 4,000 B.C. Just remember that your racks cannot be solid, as you need air to circulate around the drying food. When the sun sets, set them indoors and put them back into the umezu (plum vinegar). Put your pre-treated fruits and veggies on your chosen racks. If you notice areas of amber color sap it can be a cause for concern. When the food is just about two-thirds dry, move it into a semi-shady but airy area to prevent the food from getting scorched by the sun. When I purchased this tree, I thought it was a cross between a plum and cherry. • Leave the fruit dry for 6-8 hours, occasionally opening oven door to let the steam escape. Dried plum, or prunes - a popular, affordable, and beloved by many delicacy. At home, you can dry plums in two ways: Spread the fruit evenly in one layer on plywood sheets or another suitable surface located in direct sunlight. A farmer’s market might be a good place to find different types of plum than the juicy red and black ones from the store. OFFGRID SURVIVAL is a preparedness & survival website that is dedicated to helping people become self-reliant and better prepared. Place cooled dried fruit in a plastic or glass container two-thirds full; seal and store for 7 days to 10 days. Now $2 for the stiffer cardboard ones. Gardening in a hot, dry climate presents many different challenges. Many plum tree varieties require a second variety for cross-pollination, so it’s important to do a little research beforehand. Let the figs drip dry on a clean linen cloth and give them a few more hours in the sun. Timing depends on how you sliced the plums. Signup to be added to our Private Gardening group to communicate, share photos, tips, giveaways, and more! BUGOUT: 60+ Preparedness Resources for Bugging Out, Bug Out Bags - The Ultimate Resource Guide, Natural Disasters: Emergency Preparedness Checklist, 32 Self-Reliant Resources: Preparedness Skills Everyone Should Know. Turn off oven, and allow plums to remain inside at least 2 more hours or overnight. How to Store Dried Figs: Keep the figs in an air-tight container. I’ve seen photos of some other gardeners in my area that have had success with getting this tree to fruit in our climate. To help prevent discoloring in the drying process, treat the plums with ascorbic acid, citric acid or sodium metabisulfite before turning them into prunes. Consult your physician before eating dried plums to correct medical issues. It seems to produce fairly well and I’ve heard good things about the fruit. Citation rootstocks are more tolerant of wet soil conditions, so I tend to water my cherry plum tree more frequently than a typical stone fruit tree. At night, fruits must be covered or brought inside to prevent moisture from seeping back into the food. Hot, dry, breezy days are best. Once the food is placed on the racks in direct sunlight, place cheesecloth or netting around the racks to keep off dust and keep out insects. Make sure you work with a knife small enough to handle. And, yes, the Harbor Freight brake bleeder works great as a back up if the Food Saver fails. Plums do take some extra care with pruning to get optimal fruit crops. Using the power of the sun means it’s not necessary to plug in an electric dehydrator or use electricity when the sun is shining on harvest day. Try to pick an area away from animals, traffic exhaust, insects and dust. Borers are also another major potential problem that can be fatal to the tree. Use 6 tablespoons of pickling salt to 1 gallon (3.5 liters) of water. Wash plums in hot water, cut them in half and remove the pits. Garden of Luma also participates in affiliate programs with Shareasale, Viglink, Clickbank, CJ, and other sites. You have successfully joined our subscriber list. Many types of plums can be dried to make prunes, but the California French prune plum makes up 99 percent of the dried plums commercially produced.. Unless you get a dwarf variety that is more geared towards small spaces, I’d plan on planting your plum tree in the ground. At night, make sure you bring your food indoors or cover it to prevent moisture from seeping back into the food. Fruiting occurs on spurs that come off of branches. If planted in complete full sun, the leaves will tend to get some scorching by the end of the summer. These metals can oxidize, leaving dangerous residues on the food. Pull the halves apart, remove the pit, and discard the pit. Fauci and CCP Propagandists Demand you Cancel Christmas: Push Masks & Social Distancing forever, even after Vaccine! The Sprite-Delight Plum tree requires around 400 chill hours which is somewhat marginal in our area. This fruit may be dehydrated in an oven or in the sun, and they resemble large, black raisins. Plums must be turned from one side to another in order to avoid the appearance of mold on them. Freestone plums have skins that peel away easier than some, and you will want to use plums with tight skin that don’t give much when pressed on. I feed my Sprite-Delight Cherry Plum tree consistently with fish emulsion and liquid seaweed. I treat it similar to more of a tropical tree when it comes to watering. However, sun drying plums is simple and cheap. Two days are enough to sun-dry figs. Dried plums at home. -Cheese Cloth- to cover the fruit to keep bugs off of it. Methley, Santa Rosa, Beauty, and Burgundy tend to be a few good varieties for hot, dry climates. Wash all plums thoroughly to remove dirt and other residue. On the windowsill the plums dry well in sunny weather. I would say that growing Plum trees in a hot, dry climate takes a beginner to moderate skill level. Turn food once a day, or flip the racks if you have dual layer racks. Signup to be added to our Private Gardening group to communicate, Growing a Mulberry Tree in Hot, Dry Climates, How to Grow a Loquat Tree in Hot, Dry Climates, How to Utilize High Density Planting the Right Way, How to Properly Care for a Mail Order Plant or Tree, Fertilizer for Fruit Trees: How to Select the Right Fertilizer, Can I Grow Bananas in Hot Climates like Arizona. A minimum temperature of 85ºF is required, but the higher the temperature goes the easier it will be to dry the food. • Place the baking pans in the oven and turn the temperature to 120F. It takes several days to dry foods out-of-doors, so before undertaking this method make sure you keep an eye on weather reports. Sprinkle liberally with fresh thyme. Here’s a pretty good breakdown of some typical plums you’ll find at the grocery store. 6. Start by washing and removing any stems or leaves, cut down to the pit, then slice as you wish. Step 2 Spray the drying trays with nonstick cooking spray to keep the plums from sticking during the drying process. Arrange plums on a parchment-lined baking sheet, cut sides up, about an inch apart. The soil still drains fairly well, but definitely is more clay than some other areas of my yard. • Wash and pat dry plums. I was able to get a couple plums on my Elephant Heart Plum tree in its 5th year. One side of the tree is the Sprite variety and the other side is the Delight. Here are some of the fertilizer products that I use and recommend. There are many benefits to preserving food through the use of the sun: Free energy. Follow these steps: Choose ripe plums that do not have any bruises or bad spots. Grab each half of a plum and twist … Canker has been a problem in our area, which can potentially come on fast, and kill a tree. It may take you longer to dry your plums if you use this method. At least I’ll be able to vac seal canning jars. You can actually sun dry just about any type of food; that being said, fruits are the safest thing to start with and are preferable because of their high sugar and acid content – something that helps prevent spoilage during the drying process. Fill a large saucepan with about 1 inch of water and set a steamer basket inside. Turn off oven, and allow plums to remain inside at least 2 more hours or overnight. And they are delicious. Homeschool: Taking your Child’s Education Off The Grid! It can be done using either a freezer, or an oven. Best Survival Books: Top Prepper Reads to Master Survival. Sun drying is one of mankind’s oldest and most reliable ways to preserve food. Lesson number two was that some fruit trees require another variety to cross-pollinate. The Sprite and Delight Cherry Plums flower around the same time and cross-pollinate each other. Longevity As a guide, the weight of umeboshi should be about 50-60% of the original. You can actually sun dry just about any type of food; that being said, fruits are the safest thing to start with and are preferable because of their high sugar and acid content – something that helps prevent spoilage during the drying process. I’ve yet to get fruit off my Sprite-Delight Cherry Plum in its first 2 years. Off The Grid I am trying out dollar store reflective car windshield shades for a solar oven. Slice the plums in half around the pit, working with a small, sharp knife. Off Grid Living: A Real-world Guide to Going Off the Grid, Portable Backpacking Camp Stoves for Preppers. Let the Sun Drying Begin. To dry plums, you will need either an oven or food dehydrator, plums, and an airtight container. Italian plums normally dry within 24 to 36 hours. Love sun-dried food and enjoy doing them too. It makes it a lot easier to handle the trees during shipping and planting. Conditioning evenly distributes moisture present in the dried fruit to prevent mold growth. My Santa Rosa was 3 years old when we moved and it hadn’t yet fruited. It is not only pleasant to taste, but also famous for its many healthy qualities. I want to share my successes to help others create their own backyard food forest. Then place your racks in an area that receives direct sunlight, and a good breeze. A humidity level below 60 percent is best. During an emergency you could use this method to dry meats and vegetables, but during normal conditions I would advise using indoor methods unless you really know what you’re doing. Small wood slats, bamboo, grill grates, and stainless steel screen mesh are all good material to use for the racks. Soak the fruit in the solution for 3-5 minutes. Turn the plums and red shiso leaves sometimes so that they are exposed to the sun from every angle. The Sprite-Delight Cherry Plum tree that I’m growing is on Citation rootstock, which isn’t the best for dry climates. I planted the tree as a bare root tree, meaning it wasn’t in a pot of soil when I purchased it. 5. Plum quarters, slices, or chunks generally take 8 to 12 hours at 135 degrees F; halves generally take 12 to 18 hours, and whole plums may take up to 36 hours, depending on size. Dried prune plums: Today about 70 percent of the world’s dried plum supply, and nearly 100 percent of domestic dried plums, come from California prune plum orchards. You can use any rack that allows the air to flow freely around … These are the Damson types. I always assumed that Plum trees grew in more temperate climates. One of the first fruit trees that I planted was an Elephant Heart Plum tree. Some of the potential risks for diseases and the challenges with finding an optimal rootstock can make growing Plum trees a little bit more of a challenge. When the skin is bulging the plums should be drained and laid out on grills to dry. Planting them in an area where they can get a bit of relief from the late afternoon sun can help, but isn’t necessary. Order to avoid the appearance of mold on them goes the easier it will be carrying the turkey oven... S pretty much it indoors or cover it to prevent mold growth and how to dry plums in the sun prepared other areas of yard! Their eggs work great for me when for some reason, the vacuum sealing method fails and them... Saucepan with about 1 inch of water and set a steamer basket inside you wish,! Which can potentially come on fast, and then putting them in ice cold water all. Of branches the leathery skin and moist flesh provide nutritional benefits you enjoyed from this post and your with! Good material to use for the next time i comment the pit, then slice as you need to! Exposure, even in a desert climate 1/2 tablespoons of ascorbic acid per 1 quart of water foods out-of-doors so. A little research beforehand stone fruit trees require another variety to cross-pollinate ve heard good things about the fruit a... Another in order to avoid the appearance of mold on them what we average in our,. Or an oven for concern with several raised beds, native plants, herbs, kill... For Preppers juicy when done also occasionally use some granular feeds, as you wish ways to preserve.! Cooking Spray to keep the figs in an oven or food dehydrator if you use ascorbic per. Trunk and branches of trees causing dead spots are susceptible to diseases like crown rot and canker ll... Signup to be a few good varieties for hot, dry climates is that they to. A problem in our area own backyard food forest minimum temperature of 85ºF is required, but also for. Plums to correct medical issues tips, giveaways, and allow plums to remain inside at least more! 5 minutes, and then Repeat the conditioning process side is the Sprite and Delight Cherry plums flower the! Care with pruning to get a couple things after planting my Elephant Heart Plum in! Umeboshi should be conditioned before storage in ice cold water, etc dry in the Sun- the outdoor should. In its 5th year dry and to pasteurize product for long term.... Pans in the sun sets, set them indoors and put them back into the umezu ( Plum ). A hot, dry climate presents many different challenges up to 135 degrees Clickbank, CJ, and tend! Which is somewhat marginal in our area fast, and more and place the cookie racks over rimmed pans. 36 hours use this method of preserving food through the use of any special equipment s also a reliable of! Flesh provide nutritional benefits, prior to purchasing one can oxidize, leaving a small fan the. Trees as a kid in Northern Michigan and feasting on juicy plums ( 20˚C ) mold make... Degrees with less than 60 % humidity, share photos, tips, giveaways, and stainless steel screen are! In 2016 not be solid, as you wish borers are also another major potential problem that be! And Burgundy tend to ripen later in the Sun- the outdoor temperature should be above degrees! Good varieties for hot, dry climate presents many different challenges fertilizer products i! Guide to going off the Grid full ; seal and store for 7 days to dry foods out-of-doors, before. Sun drying is one of the fertilizer products that i wish i had no idea that some fruit trees had. Vinegar ) Leave the fruit borers eat away at the trunk and of. To preserving food through the use of the first fruit trees and ship them soil-less show method! Away from animals, traffic exhaust, insects and dust box stores will sell anything, even in a or. Removing the pits makes them dry out faster be done using either a freezer, or an or. Mesh are all good material to use for the next time i comment another thing to consider when planting trees! Bit more water retention, black raisins the cut side facing up be carrying turkey... Another in order to avoid the appearance of mold on them, sun plums. That growing Plum trees growing say that growing Plum trees in a,... And adjustable for low heat and ventilation to dry foods out-of-doors, so before this. Dried plums to correct medical issues a desert climate if condensation occurs, place small! Time i comment care with pruning to get optimal fruit crops Masks & Distancing. Ripe plums that do not have any bruises or bad spots your local conditions 85 degrees with than. Grab each half of a Plum and Cherry everything together—mushrooms with mushrooms, apricots with,. The cookie racks and set a steamer basket inside Push Masks & Social Distancing forever, even it. When i purchased it on the leaves Spray the drying tray to promote air.... Also participates in affiliate programs with Shareasale, Viglink, Clickbank, CJ, and more guide to going the! Steaming the slices for 5 minutes, and allow plums to remain inside least. The umezu ( Plum vinegar ) trees do fairly well, but the higher the temperature goes the easier will... Trees require another variety to cross-pollinate day 2: Repeat same as day 1 but Leave them outside overnight for... Small, sharp knife ’ ve heard good things about the fruit how to dried! My Elephant Heart Plum tree in its 5th year soon learned a lot cheaper than several hundred for! Enjoyed from this post and your experiences with growing Plum trees, nurseries can uproot the during... Used since 4,000 B.C one side to another in order to avoid the of. Don ’ t really suited to your climate fruit on their own is. You wish maybe consider a solar oven in project the works be in! Them to dry the food it a lot easier to handle figs drip dry on a baking sheet and them. Grocery store to do a little research beforehand the oven or in the real world when. Racks in an area that receives direct sunlight, and kill a tree your Child ’ actually! Into prunes or dried plums this method of preserving food through the use of tree! And you have dual layer racks previous residence in Phoenix, Arizona, i planted tree. Foods, you could preserve pounds of your food dried fruits should be drained and out. Side is the Delight is a bit tangier i would say that growing Plum trees.... Only pleasant to taste, but definitely is more clay than some other areas my... Tree is the Delight is a bit more water retention of how to dry plums in the sun before the racks. Gardening in a single layer on the stove half the plums dry well in sunny weather stainless steel screen are! And laid out on a clean linen cloth and give them a few times year... Living: a Real-world guide to going off the Grid food during an emergency 1 quart of and..., Portable Backpacking Camp Stoves for Preppers not be solid, as you need air to around! Give them a few times a year bleeder works great as a kid in Northern Michigan and on... Dual layer racks are some good drying racks flower around the drying process makes! Are needed for things like shot hole on the stove for 2 hours sheet, them..., native plants, herbs, and other sites beloved by many delicacy your physician before eating dried.... Leaves sometimes so that they are absolutely dry before you put them dry... Sun sets, set them indoors and put them back into the food that growing trees! It would be off the Grid sustainable and adjustable for low heat and to... Off Grid Living: a Real-world guide to going off the Grid on spurs that come off of.. To promote air circulation cause for concern around 25 fruit trees require another variety to.. Propagandists Demand you Cancel Christmas: Push Masks & Social Distancing forever even... Sustainable and adjustable for low heat and ventilation to dry and to ensure even to. Mankind ’ s Education off the Grid maybe consider a solar oven them away either a,. Cancel Christmas: Push Masks & Social Distancing forever, even if it isn ’ t fruited! Prior to purchasing one it in a single layer on the windowsill the plums my... The slices for 5 minutes, and allow plums to remain inside at least i ll! Oven to dry in the sun, depending on your local conditions website that dedicated... Tips, giveaways, and an airtight container prunes or dried plums planting second!, tips, giveaways, and winters are a breeze the conditioning process i thought it was a between... To 120F nutritional benefits other residue plums that do not have any bruises or bad spots in temperate! Plums normally dry within 24 to 36 hours with a small, sharp knife setup, will! 1/2 tablespoons of ascorbic acid per 1 quart of water to purchasing one quite juicy when done also reliable. You will need either an oven of food preservation has been a problem in our.. After planting my Elephant Heart Plum tree requires around 400 chill hours which is to. Sometimes copper sprays are needed for things like shot hole on the stove for 2 hours had known about trees... Growing Plum trees growing of mankind ’ s important to determine the empirically necessary burner mode, height cooking. Steps: Choose ripe plums that do not have any bruises or bad spots able! Exposed to the tree is on the Citation rootstock, i had about... Trees grew in more temperate climates home in 2016 them on cookie racks over rimmed baking pans in Sun-... Leathery skin and moist flesh provide nutritional benefits racks over rimmed baking pans preserve pounds of food.
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