This season I bought a giant piece of bird netting from Farmlands, sewed it to make a basic tent shape, and with much climbing up and down and repositioning of the ladder, finally got it over the tree, and gathered up the bottom edge and tied it around the trunk of the tree. Part of the opening was clipped together with little plastic bread bag clips.
And the plums ripened safely.
There was a day when I heard an awful commotion of birds and looked out the window to see a collection of mynah birds under the tree squawking and complaining to each other, and I'm quite sure they were saying, "Look at the bloody net! All those ripe plums, I can smell them, and look what she's bloody gone and done!" There may well have been a bit of a turning on an elder too, maybe a proud elder who'd said "Follow me! I know where there are plums!" because I'm sure there were birds squawking "You told us there were plums! Oh yes, you said, 'Follow me!' you said! And look!"
And then they were ripe. I undid a clip to eat one, mmmm. But what a hassle I thought to actually crop them! I thought I'd wait a day or so... It was too hard....
And then a friend said that her husband had shaken their plum tree and now she had plums to deal with.... So I shook my tree... And all the ripe plums landed safely in the net! A short trip down to the waiting bucket, an unclipping of a couple of bread clips, and I had plums! Enough to give away, to eat and to make sauce and jam. There are more - more eating, giving away, more jam, and hopefully some plum and apple relish!
Awesome! Sorry birds, this was MY year of the plum!