One more post tonight...while we were off line and the sun finally came out, we realized the mirabelle plums were ripening at an alarming rate. So what do you do when they get ripe? Pick 'em and eat 'em. I had the tree gaily decorated with old cds to discourage the birds. It seems to work and is a time honored Perigordine tradition. Nobody wants them because everyone has a tree on their property full of ripening plums they are trying to give away. The farmers collect barrels of them and let them ferment to make Eau de vie brandy in the winter, but they are very good, very sweet and if you make preserves you can use lots of them. My wife made a little video and a few tarts and crumble for starters!