SUGARING SEASON, FROM START TO FINISH
From Tap to Table.. How we do it
Our process starts with drilling a tap hole into a maple tree. A spout is inserted to direct the sap to either a bucket or into tubing that sends the sap to a large collection tank at the sugar house or a central collection area using a vacuum pump.
TIME TO BOIL..
From the storage tanks, the sap is put through a reverse osmosis machine, which takes a percentage of the water from the sap before boiling. The evaporation process sends clouds of sweet maple scented steam billowing from the sugarhouse cupolas and steam stacks. An evaporator is where the boiling process takes place. Stainless steel pans sit atop an arch, or firebox, where oil creates an intense fire. As the water in the sap evaporates, the sap thickens.
Short and Sweet
– It takes roughly 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup
– Maple sap is mostly crystal-clear water with about 2% sugar content.
– A typical sugaring season lasts 4 to 6 weeks. A pattern of freezing and thawing temperatures (below freezing at night and 40 – 45 degrees Fahrenheit during the day) will build up pressure within the tree causing sap to flow from the tap holes.
– Sugaring season ends when the warmer days of late spring cause the leaf buds to unfold.
– A tree needs to be about 40 years old (10 – 12 inches in diameter) to tap
– Some large maple trees in Vermont Sugarbushes are over 200 years old