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Coe's Golden Drop gage

According to Hogg, writing at the end of the 19th century, this plum was raised by Jervaise Coe, a market gardener living in Suffolk at the end of the 18th century who developed several plum varieties of which Golden Drop has been the most successful.

Coe stated that he raised it from a Green Gage pollinated by a White Magnum Bonum (a large culinary plum). Whilst Coe's Golden Drop has the sweet rich gage-like flavour, it seems to benefit from being balanced somewhat by the acidic qualities of its other parent which prevent it becoming over-sweet.  If there is a recipe for perfect flavour in the plum world, the marriage of the old Green Gage with a true plum is probably the best place to start.

Whilst pure gages are invariably small and round, Coe's Golden Drop has the slightly oval appearance common to many plums.  The fruit is also relatively large - certainly by gage standards.  It can be kept in a fridge for more than a week, which is very unusual for any plum - although the combination of its excellent fresh flavour and the fact that it is not a particularly good cropper means you probably won't have enough to be worth keeping.

If you can't find Coe's Golden Drop, it is worth looking out for Jefferson - Coe's Golden Drop is thought to be one of the parents, and Jefferson has a similarly good flavour but is a bit easier to grow.

Coe's Golden Drop identification images

  • Coe's Golden Drop

USDA identification images for Coe's Golden Drop

The identification paintings in the USDA Pomological Watercolor Collection span the years 1886 to 1942.

    Citation: U.S. Department of Agriculture Pomological Watercolor Collection. Rare and Special Collections, National Agricultural Library, Beltsville, MD 20705.

    Parents and other ancestors of this variety

    Offspring of this variety

    Visitor reviews

    • 18 Feb 2017  Australia
      Glorious plum, makes wonderful eating and an enchanting gold coloured jam Unfortunately we humans are not the only fans, lots of birds possums and even wallabies are keen on it as well, so good netting is essential in my part of the world
    • 23 Aug 2011  LONDON, United Kingdom
      Of the various excellent plums and gages we grow, this is easily the best of the later season varieties. When fully ripe it has a sweet but deep flavour and perfume, with an almost jellied texture to the flesh that you'll never find in a shop-bought plum. If you have a warm, sheltered spot available in your plot, fill it with a golden drop of Heaven.

    Tree register

    United States

    United Kingdom


    Spring blossom records for this variety

    2017 season

    • 29th September  2017  - tree owned by Neville in Tea Tree Gully, Australia

    2016 season

    • 27th September  2016  - tree owned by Neville in Tea Tree Gully, Australia

    2015 season

    • 20th September  2015  - tree owned by Neville in Tea Tree Gully, Australia
    • March  2015  - tree owned by Gil in Snohomish, United States

    2011 season

    • 15th April  2011  - tree owned by Dr in Petersfield, United Kingdom
    • 19th March  2011  - tree owned by Alan in Chippenham, United Kingdom

    Record your blossom dates in our Fruit Tree Register - more >>.

    Harvest records for this variety

    2017 season

    • 2nd week September  2017  - tree owned by John in Congleton, United Kingdom

    2015 season

    • 4th week February  2015  - tree owned by Neville in Tea Tree Gully, Australia

    2010 season

    • 2nd week September  2010  - tree owned by Dr in Petersfield, United Kingdom


    • Species: Prunus domestica
    • Parentage: Green Gage x White Magnum Bonum
    • Introduced: 1800
    • Developed by: Jervaise Coe


    • Picking season: Very late Late October
    • Cropping: Light
    • Keeping (of fruit): 1 week Keeps fresh in a fridge longer than most plums.
    • Food uses: Eating fresh
    • Food uses: Culinary


    • Attractive features: Attractive fruit
    • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile
    • Flowering group: 2
    • Growth habit: Spreading / Flat-topped
    • Bearing regularity: Regular


    • Summer average maximum temperatures: Cool ( 20-24C / 68-75F)
    • Summer average maximum temperatures: Warm (25-30C / 76-85F)


    • Country of origin: United Kingdom
    • Period of origin: 1800 - 1849
    • Flower colour: White
    • Leaf colour: Green
    • Fruit colour: Yellow

    Where to buy trees

    The following tree nurseries offer Coe's Golden Drop gage trees for sale:

    Where to buy fresh fruit

    No orchards have registered as growing this variety. If you grow this and want to register please go to our Orchard Registration form.

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