Ooray, or Davidson Plums – packed with nutrition

By Maree McCarthy

Davidson Plum Highlights:

  • An indigenous Australian fruit rich in Potassium, lutein, Vitamin C, E, folate, Quercetin, zinc, magnesium, calcium, phenolics and antioxidants and anthocyanins (which are very strong antioxidants).
  • These antioxidants improve collagen and have a powerful anti-inflammatory effect on the skin.
  • Anti-proliferative activity against cancers of pancreas, breast, lung, brain, skin, colon and ovary (1.).
  • Decreased abdominal fat, adipose cells size and total fat mass (2.).
  • Improved cardiovascular structure and function.
  • Improved liver structure and function.
  • Lots more Lutein than an avocado!
  • Fruit has been used to heal wounds and kill bacteria.
  • Fruit currently sells at various prices but I’ve seen it online frozen for $9/100g (thats $90/kg!)

Funny story…

I was really sick with Covid about 2 months ago and along with Vitamin C, D, Tumeric, Zinc, etc, Quercetin is recommended as treatment.

I couldn’t stomach much at all but my Davidson Plum sauce seemed to go down well so I looked up what nutrients they have and was surprised to dis-cover that our own native Australian Davidson Plums are extremely high in all the supplements recommended for Covid, including Quercetin glycosides (193 mg/100 g)! The paper I found this in also found that Davidson Plums help with diet-induced Metabolic syndrome (Ref 2: John et al, 2019)!

Apparently, apples are used to extract Quercetin but I read that apples only have 4.4mg/100g of Quercetin!

But what do the native plums taste like? Very tart and richly flavoured! Makes yummy smoothie with frozen banana!

Different species

There are at least 3 species of Davidson Plums – all are attractive plants suitable for growing in home gardens and/or pots on balconies as long as frost is not too severe and they get some shelter from harsh winds.

  • Davidsonia johnsonii is rare and endangered and grows as a small shrub and has the smallest of the Davidson Plum fruits which is highly priced by indigenous people.
  • Davidsonia jerseyana is a rare and endangered shade-loving narrow shrub to 3m high but never wider than 1m. It bears its fruit directly on the trunk! There appears to be another subspecies that grows taller.
  • Davidsonia pruriens is the most amazing skinny tree to about 5 or 6m high in Newcastle. As with D. jerseyana, it is the most apically dominant plant I have ever met! It doesn’t matter if you cut off the trunk at any point, it just continues up straight as an extremely skinny tree. I had to cut mine so my house could be painted – no problem! See pic of them grow-ing back. I have found it loves full sun but also loves shade. It just doesn’t love a lot of wind.
Davidson plum


All of them simply drop their fruit when ripe so all you have to do is pick them up as they fall.

Being such a skinny and always straight upright tree that takes shade, it is very useful in narrow corridors between houses or beside driveways. The lower part of the trunk in both D. pruriens, and D. jerseyana is bare (unless covered with fruit) and has a nice tidy little crown never wider than 1m so it is good for shade close to your house in summer whilst still allowing Winter sun to come underneath when the sun is lower in the sky.

Best way to store the fruit is to remove the 2 largish hairy seeds and freeze them. There are many recipes online these days!

Sew seeds fresh – straight out of the fruit for almost 100% germination rate!

How fantastic is our Australian bush food!


  1. Chuen, Tiffany L.K., Vuong, Quan V., Hirun, Sathira, Bowyer, Michael C., Predebon, Melanie J., Goldsmith, Chloe D., Sakoff, Jennette A., Scarlett, Christopher J., (2016), Antioxidant and an-ti-proliferative properties of Davidson’s plum (Davidsonia pruriens F. Muell) phenolic-enriched extracts as affected by different extraction solvents, Journal of Herbal Medicine, Vol 6, Issue 4, Dec 2016, pp 187-192.
  2. John, Oliver, D., Mouatt, Peter, Panchal, Sunil, Brown, Lindsay, (2019), The edible native Aus-tralian fruit, Davidson’s plum (Davidsonia pruriens), reduces symptoms in rats with diet-induced metabolic syndrome, Journal of Functional Foods, 56:204-215 DOI: 10.1016/j.jff.2019.03.018 Project: Tropical fruits and metabolic syndrome using rats model.
  3. Page, Tony, and Watkins, Margo, (2016), Cultivation of Davidson’s Plum (Davidsonia spp.), In book: Australian native Plants (pp.33-48). DOI:10.1201/b20635-6