Muckle Plum

Posted by shane - January 7, 2015 - A-Z Plant Maintenance, Trees - No Comments

Prunus nigrella ‘Muckle’

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Flowering muckle plum in Red Deer. S. LePage photo.

Muckle plums are rare in the landscape, which is too bad, because their flower display is among the best of the ornamental trees on the Prairies. This small tree is extremely useful as a specimen in a small yard, near a patio or deck, or planted next to a water feature.  We use this plant widely in our designs, especially in front yard gardens, because the hot pink flowers are hard to beat.  Muckle plum foliage is glossy green in summer turning to a nice orange fall colour.


Full sun

Pruning Time

Late Fall to mid-Spring, prior to bud break.



Train as a central leader standard, with well spaced scaffold (main) branches.  Subordinate co-dominant branches.  Annually, remove dead, broken branches, and major crossing and rubbing branches.

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Newly planted muckle plum in Red Deer. S. LePage photo.

Crown Reduction and Shaping

Not recommended and unnecessary.  This tree only gets to be about 10-12′ high in our region. At planting, allow sufficient space for the mature plant.

Health Issues

Many of the muckle plums we planted this year appear to have gummosis, which is the formation of a gummy substance on the twigs near wounds or infections.  In particular, I noticed gummosis occuring at hail damage wounds.  I mistook it for a bacterial infection.  Gummosis doesn’t appear to affect the health of the tree.


(c) 2015 Shane LePage, Wild Rose Garden & Tree Service Inc., Red Deer, AB.