So my neighbours have this fruiting tree, which is growing into my garden and it has a huge amount of fruit on it. It seems a waste to not use them if they're safe. I'm asking here what type of fruit are they and are they safe? The neighbours aren't exactly the most pleasant people to ask what the tree is, hence why asking here.

I've been doing some digging and I think they're greengages. I'm in Ireland in case that helps narrow down what can grow here in terms of fruiting plants.

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Thanks for the help!

  • 1
    Certainly looks like a greengage to me, lucky you... if you're not sure, cut one in half first, just to check it has the typical plum stone in the middle. Also a good way of checking if they're ripe - so if it smells and looks like a variety of plum, sample it after you've cut it open to check for ripeness. Because you don't know the variety, hard to tell if they're ripe, so they may not yet be fully ripened.
    – Bamboo
    Commented Jul 23, 2017 at 13:15
  • Cut it open, it definitely has a hard stone in the centre that I couldn't cut through. Smells sweet. Thanks for the advice, looks like it's some greengages. I also put the photo in the question of the fruit cut open too, for a more experienced persons feedback.
    – Grinch91
    Commented Jul 23, 2017 at 13:22
  • 1
    For those not familiar with the term greengage as I was they "are a group of cultivars of the common European plum"
    – kevinskio
    Commented Jul 23, 2017 at 15:33
  • 2
    Pluck a few, peel/cut into mouth sized pieces, knock on neighbor's door and offer them some, if they eat it, voila!! its edible Bonus: You've now made friends with your neighbors :) Commented Jul 23, 2017 at 16:34
  • Just eat a bit, you'll know straightaway if its greengage - I reckon they should look a bit more yellowish when they're fully ripe though, at least, our greengages did
    – Bamboo
    Commented Jul 23, 2017 at 19:30

1 Answer 1


So to put Bamboo's and Kevinsky's information into an answer, bad me, you've got this European plum, also called Greengage; Prunus domestica Italica var. claudiana. Yummy plum/prune! Although I am not at all experienced with this fruit! I could be wrong on the variety!

  • Loads of old varieties, see here orangepippintrees.co.uk/plum-trees/old-greengage - the one you've mentioned is grown primarily in mainland Europe rather than UK so its unlikely to be that one - some are better for cooking, though why you'd bother with those I really don't know, might as well just grow the usual plum instead
    – Bamboo
    Commented Jul 23, 2017 at 23:16

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