One of the newest, most exciting additions to the produce world in the last several years is the pluot. This fruit is a mix between plums and apricots that showcase more plum characteristics than apricot. The excitement continues to grow with new varieties coming out with cool names like Dapple Dandy, Flavor Grenade, and Eagle Egg. They come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and colors. Some even come with dinosaur stickers on them, which is why my kids and I am sure many others call them dinosaur fruit – great marketing Kingsburg Orchards.
When Does Pluot Season Being (and End)?
All of the pluots I have seen show up in the grocery store have been from California. The only other origin I have come across was a couple Chilean pluots during the winter, but those sightings were pretty rare. You can grow them where you would grow plums and I heard of farmers growing pluots here in Michigan. But when it comes to commerical pluots, California is the only player in the game. So I am going to base the window for plout season on the California crop. The earliest varieties hit stores in mid May with the lastest varieties wrapping up in late September to early October. Late July to through the entire month of August I would say is the prime of the season in which the most varieties and some of the most flavorful ones are available. It was around that time last year, I took my kids to Joe Randazzo’s Fruit and Vegetables in Westland, Michigan, where they have 5 to 6 different types of once. My kids had some much fun asking me to try different ones like Mango Tango, Lone Star, and Dinosaur Egg.
More About Varieties
There are so many varieties and I have a blast each year trying to try as many as I can. Here are a couple I want to particularly highlight.
Honey Red Dino Pluot
In my opinion this is the first really good pluot of the season. The earliest I tend to find is Flavorosa, which isn’t bad, but the Honey Red Dino that come out in the first half of June are amazing. Super sweet and flavorful. The ones I bought were on the small size – perfect for my kids to snack upon.
Flavor Grenade Pluot
Without a doubt this has to be the coolest name for a piece of fruit in history. This pluot are shaped like a grenande and are bursting with flavor. They are more firm than many of the other varieties. Available in August.
Honey Punch Pluot
This pluot is so sweet is punches you right in the face. It is a purple pluot with a bright red interior. When these are ripe, they can’t be beat. They are one of the most widely distributed pluots. I have seen them at Whole Foods Market and Kroger during the heart of the summer.
Dapple Dandy Pluot
This one is also called Dinsaur Egg. It has a speckled apperance and is another of the easiest varieties to find. It is avaiable in late July/early August.