Upright Thorny Plants

WILD PLUMS Pmtuis spp. p. 310

Recognition; I'hough the cherries, also in the genus Prunus9 are never spiny, the plums are variously thorny or not, Alleghany Plum (p. 240), for example, sometimes has spine-lipped twigs. For upright cherries and such usually thornless plums see Plate 53, Some spines of plums may be simple spikes, but most are short, stiff, bud-bearing branches with sharpened tips. Thorns are generally absent from young twigs- Like other species of Primus, leafstalks of most plums (but see American Plum) bear paired small glands. Sap clear and spur brandies often present. Bark often marked with horizontal line-like lenticels. Unlike cherries, the end buds are false in plums. Wild plum fruits are small, ball-shaped, with single large seeds.

The several plums that regularly bear thorns usually may be separated by the following key, but also see species accounts:

L Twigs hairless or nearly so:

2. Leaf scars raised but not hiding any large part of the buds:

3. Buds red-brown, mostly about W long


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