After more than 15 years of rallying for them, I am finally beginning to see the fruits of my labor (pun intended) when it comes to the Flavor King pluots. We planted our first few rows (less than 100 trees) of Flavor Kings in the late ‘90s at Frog Hollow Farm but it wasn’t until 2000-2001 that I had my first encounter with the sensational Flavor King pluot—a unique plum-apricot hybrid developed by Zaiger Genetics—and I was amazed by its intense flavor.
So when we acquired new acreage in 2001, we planted some more rows of Flavor King pluots and in 2004-2005 we had our first big enough crop to sell at local farmer’s markets. Customers who tasted them were blown away by the Flavor King’s incredible bouquet and sweet, spicy flavor but they’d only purchase two or three pieces at a time. This bewildered me at first because these same customers would line up for cases of our peaches and nectarines. But it did not take long for me to realize that despite their impressive flavor, pluots, in general, were still unique to people. The Flavor King wasn’t as familiar as peaches or nectarines. I knew then that it would take over a decade of consistent word-of-mouth marketing for these fruits to catch on!
For over 20 years Dave Wilson Nursery—the largest wholesale grower of fruit trees for the home garden in the United States (according to their website)—has conducted formal fruit tastings, compiling over 43,000 individual variety ratings while evaluating over 1,700 fruit samples. According to their 2014 Fruit Tasting Report, Flavor King has been one of the most consistently high-scoring varieties.
And thus, more than 15 years after I first fell in love with Flavor King pluots, I am glad to share with you that from all the calls and pre-orders (wholesale and retail) that we have gotten so far, 2017 is the year of the Flavor King at Frog Hollow Farm. Not only do we have a good size crop but also we’ve got a significant number of pre-orders that we’re starting to fulfill this week. Not a bad problem to have! In fact, it’s one I anticipated as early as 2001.
Have you reserved your box yet?