Tree Tapping Time

WHILE CALIFORNIA STRUGGLES WITH WET WEATHER, THE MIDWEST – INCLUDING OHIO -- HAS BEEN WARMER THAN USUAL. FOR YOU, THAT PROBABLY MEANS YOU CAN PLAY OUTSIDE WITHOUT A COAT, BUT, FOR MAPLE SYRUP PRODUCERS IT MEANS IT’S TIME TO GET TO WORK! THE MAKERS OF OUR FAVORITE PANCAKE TOPPING HAVE STARTED WORKING AHEAD OF SCHEDULE FOR THE SECOND YEAR IN A ROW.  MAPLE SYRUP COMES FROM CERTAIN VARIETIES OF MAPLE TREES, WHICH ARE FOUND MOSTLY IN THE MIDWEST AND NORTHEAST UNITED STATES. UP NEXT, WE HEAD TO ONE OF THOSE STATES, WISCONSIN, TO HEAR FROM A SYRUP PRODUCER WHAT CONDITIONS ARE NECESSARY TO GET THE SWEET STUFF FLOWING.

[WI: MAPLE SYRUP TAPPING STARTS]

Nats: Drill and hammering "I tapped one tree, it was running in the afternoon when I tapped it. And I left the tap out until today which is Thursday, and I got almost two gallons out of that tap, which is a pretty good run. The weather has been good but again it's early so that's why we're kind of cautious about just putting a sample tap out."

Nats:

Drill BILL ROETHLE AND HIS SON BRAD ARE BUSY AT WORK DRILLING AND TAPPING INTO THE LARGEST MAPLE TREES THAT COVER THEIR FIVE ACRES. THEY ARE KEEPING A CLOSE EYE ON THE WEATHER AND HOPING TO STAY IN THE SWEET SPOT FOR TEMPERATURE SWINGS. "If it just gets 25, 28 in the evening at night and then 35 during the day, it really doesn't run that good. It really runs probably good when it hits like 20 at night and 40, 45 during the day."

AND WITH TEMPERATURES EXPECTED TO REACH 50 OR ABOVE.  THIS WEEKEND LOOKS PROMISING.

Nats: Tapping

"So we're going to get a good run, probably Friday and Saturday."

Reporter: "Now there is such a thing as too much warm weather, if it doesn't get cold enough at night, the sap won't run because it doesn't warm up during the day."

Nats: Drill "The forecast for it not to go below freezing again probably not till next weekend so, I'm not really anticipating to get any more until maybe next weekend or the weekend after, which would be more normal. But I didn't want to miss out on the first run here. We actually probably missed out on a significant amount of sap for this last week."


Instructional Links


Website Article: Environmental Education for Kids, Those Marvelous Maples

Video: National Geographic Kids, Making Stuff, How to Make Maple Syrup

Website Article: Travel Wisconsin, A Walk in the Sugar Bush

Encyclopedia Article: World Book Student, Wisconsin | May need password

Website Article: Vermont Maple Sugar Makers’ Association, Nutritional Information

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