The Plum Over 70% of the province’s inhabitants live in rural areas, and their main source of income is farming. Although most of the crop production is for personal consumption, coffee, cassava, plantain, papaya, citrus fruit, corn and native fruits are cultivated commercially, and among these is the plum. The plum (Spondias purpurea) is a fruit bush that grows in tropical regions. It is also known as the “Plum of the Coast” or “West Plum”. It grows quickly and reaches between 3 and 6 metres high. The fruit is red with a large stone, and as a result the juicy yellow flesh, with a delicate bittersweet flavour, astringent with a characteristic aroma, is relatively scarce. It is often grown for the nutritional value of its fruit, which is eaten ripe, cooked or pickled in alcohol or brine. It is also used to
make jellies, jams, wine, vinegar, alcoholic drinks, soft drinks and even chicha. It has a low content of fat and protein, but it is high in calcium, phosphorous, iron and ascorbic acid. Infusions of its leaves are used to clean wounds, burns and inflammations. The leaves are used to treat gum infections, rashes and measles. The juice of the fruit can be taken as a diuretic, antispasmodic and for treating febrile states. Thanks to its ease of propagation from cuttings and its rapid growth, it is used as fencing along properties as well as to enclose livestock.