Definition of plum in English:

plum

noun

  • 1An oval fleshy fruit which is purple, reddish, or yellow when ripe and contains a flattish pointed stone.

    • ‘And not just any old plums, but ripe, juicy plums all the better to fill the bellies of the most needy.’
    • ‘Quarter each plum and place plums and their stones in a large preserving pan with lemon juice.’
    • ‘As she got close she realized that the fruits that hung from the heavy lush branches were small and purple, like a plum.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, stone the plums and cut each in quarters.’
    • ‘Ripe plums make excellent snacks, and because they're also high in fibre, teaming them with a slice of cheese will limit the amount of saturated fat that your body absorbs.’
    • ‘Brown rot can affect plums and other stone fruits.’
    • ‘After six I don't eat anything except fruit - plums, dried dates, mangoes or grapes.’
    • ‘It is these peaches, apricots, cherries, plums, nectarines, citrus fruits and figs that once again fill the Orchard House with their heady scent.’
    • ‘At that time it grew a very different range of crops ranging from soft fruit, apples, plums and pears, to onions and leeks - the usual vegetables of the time.’
    • ‘Well, why not pip along to The Orchard in Bishopthorpe for a squeeze of some lovely luscious plums, pears, apples and soft fruits.’
    • ‘Figs, plums, pears, apples, peaches and other fruits were grown there.’
    • ‘You prepare breakfast - a gourmet feast of hearty muesli, Bulgarian yoghurt, freshly collected wild berries, ripe plums and cherries - perfect energy food, nutritious and tasty.’
    • ‘If they are very lucky there may be some fruit, wild plums or a crab apple.’
    • ‘He would discover in his own way the lacy texture of a cantaloupe or the dusky purple of a ripe plum.’
    • ‘You could also make it with apples, pears, or even stone fruit such as plums or apricots.’
    • ‘This recipe works with a variety of fruit: apples, apricots, plums… Here, I used 6 small pears (of three different kinds).’
    • ‘Stone fruit includes plums, peaches, nectarines and cherries - all those delicious things that we import from other parts of the country around Christmas time.’
    • ‘The wasps are eating all the ripe plums that we didn't get around to picking over the weekend.’
    • ‘Halve the plums, remove the stones, then slice each half into four or six wedges, depending on their thickness.’
    • ‘Rinse and stone the plums, removing any stalks as you go.’
    1. 1.1West Indian usually with modifier A small edible fruit from any of a number of trees.
      • ‘Buying paradise plum, icy mint, sky juice, suck-suck or busta through the fence.’
  • 2The deciduous tree which bears plums.

    Several species in the genus Prunus, family Rosaceae, in particular P. domestica

    • ‘There is a plum tree right outside the front door to Ryan's basement suite, so just prior to departure Moses climbed the tree in order to lob the fruit down to me.’
    • ‘Spring was finally feeling about him and the plum tree was blooming, buds of white and lavender and pink sprawling out in pastel against the blue of the sky.’
    • ‘Varieties of pear, sweet cherry and plum are known to be self-pollinating.’
    • ‘Each year local people by tradition go to view plum blossoms in early spring.’
    • ‘If you have space in your yard, do plant a plum tree - your family will thank you for it.’
    • ‘There are lots of plums on the plum tree, funnily enough, even though the leaves curled up and fell off a long time ago.’
    • ‘White and red are the two major colours of plum flowers.’
    • ‘Spring flowering trees such as flowering cherries, plums and apricots should not be pruned during winter, otherwise you will cut off many of the flowers.’
    • ‘The trail is embraced by a canopy of plums and mango trees laden with soon to be ripe fruit.’
    • ‘Nothing like standing under the plum tree in the cool of the morning and having a couple of sweet ones for breakfast.’
    • ‘The plum tree in our garden is covered in blossom, as are the trees outside my office window.’
    • ‘It is manicured and contains mature planting, a lawn and a plum tree.’
    • ‘Everard sat silently against the plum tree, his favorite tree, his favorite spot in all of Dustin Manor's expansive grounds.’
    • ‘Apple, pear, plum and cherry trees shadow the hard tennis court which has full perimeter fencing entwined with climbing roses and clematis.’
    • ‘‘He is looking after a few bushes and shrubs and has even placed a circle of white stones around a small plum tree,’ he added.’
    • ‘There was a huge plum tree in my yard and we would climb it en masse and fill buckets (I swear this is true).’
  • 3mass noun A reddish-purple colour.

    ‘a pure silk shirt in shades of cream and soft plum’
    count noun ‘rosy pinks, rich coppers, and deep plums are the big fashion news’
    as modifier ‘a plum blazer’
    • ‘I hastily pulled its deep plum colored wool around my shoulders and clasped it as I ran down the stairs.’
    • ‘It had been transformed to be quite crooked and swelled, painted in a vibrant deep plum and green.’
    • ‘It has deep, plum walls, floral candelabras and a narrow bench laden with plump cushions.’
    • ‘The title glows in fucshia, lime and plum against a black background.’
    • ‘Modern hybrids come in every colour from white and apricot to deep plum.’
    • ‘They are grown for the beautiful colours of their foliage: lemony green, pink, plum, cerise, chocolate, russet and flame.’
    • ‘You'll find plenty of ties in juicy shades such as berry and plum.’
    • ‘Moving the stack, she finds a cute little top in her favorite colour, plum purple.’
    • ‘If you've got the time, or the inclination, layer on a single stroke of eye shadow in sheer shades of lavender, iridescent plum, taupe or bronzy brown.’
    • ‘It had cream painted walls with the odd panel of dark plum red colour, and huge canvases of gold paintings.’
    • ‘The basic palette comprises green, white and every shade of red from pale pink to deep plum.’
    • ‘She had sweet green eyes that went surprisingly well with her plum purple hair.’
    • ‘The colours are more autumnal, shades of plum and mahogany rather than Mediterranean.’
    • ‘Leaves can be green or patterned, often with red-tinged undersides or spotted with deep plum.’
    • ‘It was an incredible show full of optimism, seen best in the romantically nostalgic jersey dresses and flared-trouser suits in deep, warm colours such as blueberry and plum.’
    • ‘Because these plants are seed grown, the flower colour ranges from white to deep plum, lavender and blush, some spotted, others speckled or plain.’
    • ‘Dark berry colours will also be very popular; plum, aubergine, dark raspberry and even chocolate colours.’
  • 4informal usually as modifier A thing, typically a job, considered to be highly desirable.

    ‘he landed a plum assistant producer's job’
    • ‘Today's lucky hard-up is a sales executive from Surrey who has to be the biggest plum in the south-east.’
    • ‘He's still waiting for the big plum role that will make him a household name.’
    • ‘There may be a lot more women working - 70% of British women, in fact - but they generally earn less than men and rarely get the plum jobs.’
    • ‘The private sector was miles ahead when the idea was first launched and got itself some amazing plum deals.’
    • ‘Meanwhile why don't ask Muslim ministers who have been given plum posts in the coalition government to do something for the community.’
    • ‘You can get them in a room and threaten them with regulations, you can offer the executives cushy positions on the board of crown enterprises or other plum jobs, or you can just have the unions attack them.’
    • ‘Julia Haworth took acting lessons to combat shyness… and went on to land a plum role in the nation's favourite TV soap.’
    • ‘Landing those plum international assignments, however, is harder than ever.’
    • ‘IT'S HEARTENING TO LEARN ABOUT choreographers who snag a plum full-time job at a college or university.’
    • ‘If you're a foreign correspondent, you've got a plum assignment and you've learned how to play the game.’
    • ‘Health care is by far the richest potential plum amongst Canada's remaining public services.’
    • ‘Throughout that era, territory was the most coveted of resources, the plum prize in any power struggle, the mark of distinction between the victors and the defeated.’
    • ‘Kinder was offered the plum position directly by the White House.’
    • ‘They are certainly in line to be handed the plum positions.’
    • ‘He favors free trade and giving firms from donor nations the first crack at plum investments.’
    • ‘If he wants to reclaim the front page photo spot his best move might be to offer her a plum diplomatic post a long way from home.’
    • ‘After so long in opposition, Cook was delighted with such a plum position but despite his undoubted political acumen he came to be regarded as no more than an indifferent performer.’
    • ‘If I knew I was handed an academic plum I should have worked for just because I whined to the right people, I don't think I could sleep as soundly at night.’
    • ‘Cuper knows he will land a plum job, one with near unlimited funds, where winning silverware will be comparatively simple.’
    excellent, very good, wonderful, marvellous, choice, best, prize, first-class
    View synonyms

adverb

US
  • ‘the helicopter crashed plum on the cabins’
    variant spelling of plumb
    • ‘Both were meant to show cutting-edge technology, but now they are extremely campy, outdated relics of yesteryear and just a plum bad idea.’
    • ‘And it appears that I'm plum out of ice cream (although for some strange reason, I have several boxes of cones).’
    • ‘This time they were plum out of luck and beaten by a high octane-fuelled side who certainly saved their best wine until last.’
    • ‘My mental status, right now, sometimes I feel like I have just plum lost it, really.’
    • ‘And the panels are made in a factory environment, so everything is square, precise, plum and all that.’
    • ‘Using that event of history for the surroundings you now throw your characters plum in the middle of it all and watch them go.’
    • ‘No other boat reached a final, and the eight, defending Olympic champions, came plum last.’
    • ‘I guess somewhere between running between the kid on ECMO and trying to draw blood from an arm the size of my index finger, I just plum forgot about it.’
    • ‘I got so lost in trying to guess what every feather and coloured band on his body denoted that I plum missed the camp being set up, and nearly didn't notice Doc on his way back over.’
    • ‘Greg and I plum forgot to back things up just in case.’

Phrases

  • have a plum in one's mouth

    • Have an accent thought typical of the English upper classes.

      ‘an affable dilettante with a plum in his mouth’
      • ‘His idea of inhabiting the character is to talk like he has a plum in his mouth.’
      • ‘‘He got stuck in on the rugby field but even then he spoke as though he had a plum in his mouth,’ recalled Robin.’
      • ‘He reckons he speaks with a plum in his mouth.’
      • ‘The way Miss Long speaks which sounds like she has a plum in her mouth I find absolutely fascinating and when she rolls those eyes of hers brilliant.’
  • like a ripe plum (or ripe plums)

    • Used to convey that something can be obtained with little or no effort.

      ‘the country is likely to fall into the enemy's hands like a ripe plum’
      • ‘He disposes of the ruler so that the throne falls into his hand like a ripe plum.’
      • ‘In actuality, however, it was one of the components of Karl Marx's dual strategy for world revolution: Debase the language and the money, and capitalism will fall like a ripe plum.’

Origin

Old English plūme, from medieval Latin pruna, from Latin prunum (see prune).

Pronunciation

plum

/plʌm/