Peak Season is Here--Maple Cream to Follow

by Peter 4/3/2011 6:08:00 AM

The past several days have been excellent weather for sap flow.  We have collected and processed thousands of gallons of sap.  On Friday, we made 75 gallons of maple syrup, which is a new record for us.  We were excited that much of this syrup was light amber, making it suitable for making maple cream.  Hopefully we will have our first batch of cream made next weekend.  We have been out of maple cream for quite a while, which has been difficult.  For those who have tasted maple cream (which is really just maple syrup concentrated into a spreadable form, sort of like whipped honey), it is a treat that is hard to go without. 

It appears that the weather this week will be good early in the week and then turn marginal for sap production after Wednesday.  This is because the overnight low temperatures are not expected to drop below freezing.  However, with the vacuum pump we should still be able to get some sap flow.  We are hoping to be making syrup for at least a couple more weeks, but there is no way to predict how long the sap will continue to flow.

Syrup Season is Upon Us!

by Peter 3/20/2011 3:36:00 AM

Sap flows on Friday and Saturday were very strong.  There was a strong freeze Friday night with a nice warmup to about 46 degrees on Saturday.  The trees have finally awakened from their winter freeze and the sap flowed quickly all day and night.  Sunday morning we woke up to our 800 gallon bulk tank being completely filled with flow from the overnight hours, which is nearly unprecedented.  This means that we collected over 1 gallon of sap per taphole overnight.  Overnight temperatures stayed in the mid-30's, keeping the sap lines open.  Usually the sap will not keep flowing without both freezing and thawing but we think that since this is the first strong warm spell, the sap kept flowing.  So far we have collected over 2000 gallons of sap and processed much of it into syrup.  The syrup is a very tasty, dark amber.  


Taps In

by Peter 3/12/2011 4:56:00 AM

The 670 taps have been installed this year, but we haven't made a drop of syrup yet.  A cool (cold) start to the season has us waiting for the first big sap flow.  The weather forecast for this upcoming week looks promising, so we anticipate using the reverse osmosis machine for the first time, followed soon after by an increased rate of syrup production.  

The ideal weather for maple sap flow involves a quick warm up in the morning from about 20 degrees to a temperature in the mid 40s.  Sunday evening until Monday should give us those good flow conditions.  If you look at the weather from Monday until Wednesday, it doesn't look like there will be a very strong freeze, so the sap should stay fluid in the trees.  With the aid of a vacuum pump, we should be able to collect sap on those days as well.  If we didn't have a vacuum pump, it is likely that the sap would not flow much on its own.


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Updated: Mar 12, 2011, 9:45am CST


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