A PLUM and a peach have been accidentally crossed by a retired farmer near Mudgee to produce a highly unusual new fruit.
Retired farmer Bruce Davis has grown a cross between a peach and a plum, which looks like a peach from the outside, but more like a red plum on the inside.
Minister for Primary Industries, Steve Whan, said it was an example of how mother nature could work in mysterious ways.
“We already know a plum and an apricot can cross, it’s called a Pluot, but a peach and plum is an exciting combination which is new for our State," he said.
“It is yet to be seen if this fruit has a place in the market, but if there is a new opportunity, I would encourage the grower to explore it.”
Bruce Davis said he was surprised when he picked the fruit from his tree as he was expecting it to be a peach.
“I have peaches in one row and blood plums in the next, we put plum seeds into the compost and I think they may have pollinated and grown from there,” Mr Davis said.
“It’s a really interesting piece of fruit, and it’s very tasty, the seed was not as big as a peach but it is bigger than a plum.”
Industry & Investment NSW Mudgee horticulturist Susan Marte said this was the first time she has heard of anyone accidentally crossing the two fruits.
“People generally cross fruit varieties so they are more commercially acceptable. These crosses can focus on improving traits such as taste, appearance, time of ripening, and even producing a hardier fruit with greater resistance to pest and disease,” Ms Marte said.
“A white-flesh peach and plum cross has been hybridized in the United States, however Mr Davis’ fruit has red flesh inside.
“Mr Davis’ tree should keep producing the same fruit, however there is no guarantee that seeds sown from the fruit of this tree would produce the same unusual fruit, as they could possibly revert back to their original parent traits.”