THE PRESENT STAGE OF PLUM CULTIVATION IN ROMANIA AND ITS PROSPECTS FOR THE FUTURE
In what concerns the purple plum (P.domestica L.), it probably began to be cultivated at the moment of the migration of peoples. Propagation of this species has been highly encouraged from the very first centuries of our era, certainly due to the exceptional qualities of its fruit.
The conditions of climate and soil that P.domestica and all its varieties found on the Romanian territory as it is today, met all its ecological requirements and this constituted - together with the qualities of its fruit - the second factor determining its high extension in culture. Even 5–6 centuries ago the purple plum has become the main cultivated species of the Prunus genus in many fruit areas and centres.
The third factor that contributed to this extension was the fact that the P.domestica held one of the most valuable raw materials that may be dried, preserved as paste and distilled in order to obtain the plum spirits called "tuica", "slivovita" or "slibovita".
For the population living on the moderate or high hills, the "tuica" constituted not only the favourite drink for festive celebrations but also the means of subsistance. Just like the wine, it could be kept and it improved by getting old, while waiting for opportunities of being sold.