Tapping Trees for Syrup and Home Sugaring Preparation

Categories: On The Farm


We’ve been tapping the maple trees on our property since the very first winter we moved in, 2015 will be our 7th season.  It’s a fun process and relatively easy too.  Most everyone is familiar with maple syrup and tapping but birch, box elder, and even black walnut trees can be tapped for sap that is later boiled into syrup.  If you’d like to get started tapping trees for syrup on your homestead, I’ve got some tips for you:

1. Climate is Everything

In order for any of the tappable trees to actually produce sap, they need to be in an area that has a winter and period of freezing.  Folks who can grow citrus aren’t going to be able to tap trees for syrup.  The optimum time to tap varies not only from region to region, it varies from year to year.  Trees should be tapped when the temperatures reach the 40 degree Fahrenheit range during the day and drop to the 20s at night. While most of us know generally when this will happen in our areas, it’s good to keep an eye on the forecasts to get the timing better.

2. Tapping Equipment

Commercial producers have huge systems of tubes and evaporators and much more.  At home, most folks keep it simple.  To actually tap a tree, a hole needs to be drilled into the tree and a spileor tap of some sort must be placed.  Buckets or containers to collect the sap are also needed.  That’s pretty much it for getting sap from the tree. Truly, Mother Nature does most of the work here.

3. Making Syrup

Once the sap is collected, it needs to be boiled down into syrup.  This is a lengthy process but still simple....... read on to the rest of the orginal story by Kathie Lapcevic at HomespunSeasonalLiving

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