Saturday, February 22, 2014

Maple Sugaring

February started out looking a lot like this: 

Finally today though, we had a lovely, spring-like day. We went with some friends to a local living history farm and learned about maple sugaring. I actually learned a lot today. For instance, you can only tap a maple when it is above freezing during the day and below at night. You also need about a gallon of sap to make 6 ounces of maple syrup. (It's called sugaring because if you keep boiling the sap, you eventually end up with maple sugar.) No wonder it's so expensive!

We got to help make the butter for our maple-syruped pancakes.

And then the boys realized that they were selling the maple taps in the gift shop. Gummy Bear helpfully reminded us that we had TWO maple trees in our yard. And so, we tapped ourselves a tree. The taps themselves were only $3, the piece of tubing is $1 and the jug we had sitting the house.

You have to drill a hole in the tree at an upward angle so that when you take the tap out, the tree can flush the hole and heal properly.

And then the sap starts dripping out of the tree. Seriously, just like that. It's actually really cool. It tastes like very lightly sugared water. You know. Because it is.

And here's the final set up. We tapped the tree about 3 hours ago and already have two inches of sap in the bottom. Because our maple is not a Sugar Maple, we can only expect 3 ounces of syrup from our gallon, but that's not really the point, is it?


Mummu said...

that is SO AWESOME!!

Papa Mike said...

Good luck with your new business venture! The boys are well on their way to becoming syrup tycoons. ;)

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