I am more than bored with winter and needed a garden-related activity so we decided to try our hand at making maple syrup. We’ve never tapped maples before and our sugar maple is too small. So rather than wait, we’re tapping some other maple trees.
Unfortunately, our biggest sugar maple is only 7 inches in diameter – too small to safely tap for maple syrup. But we do have a large Norway maple and large red maple in the yard so we decided to go ahead and tap both these trees and see what we get.
I’m no expert – this is the first year we’ve ever tapped maple trees. Apparently, you can tap any kind of maple, the ending syrup may just not be as sweet. What I think is a Norway maple by our barn is quite vigorous so I’m hoping it provides a lot of sap to turn into syrup. And if it’s not as sweet can’t I just boil it down a little longer? I have no idea.
A trip to Lee Valley a couple of weekends ago netted us this maple tapping kit. My plan is to collect the sap every couple of days and store it in one of the buckets we are not using until we can boil it down.
We tapped our trees on February 27, 2022. You are supposed to wait until the nights are still below zero, but the days are above zero. That’s been a challenge this past winter as it’s been unusually cold. However, it looks like it should warm up by next weekend so out we went. Mind you they keep pushing the cold back every time I check.
Now we wait.