Thursday, January 31, 2013

LATE JANUARY- ALREADY!

LATE JANUARY- ALREADY!
     I can't believe it!  It is already late January.  Time to start early garden plants, clean up the winter messes and start gathering maple sap for the years maple syrup!  The syrup making is a very intense work, that everyone enjoys here.  The gathering, cooking, tasting, bottling, tasting some more:), is work we all look forward to.  Like so many farm related jobs, when the weather becomes perfect and its time to "do sap" it won't wait for us to finish this other job or be sick or whatever distraction there is. 

    
    After gathering all the buckets, some nails, cleaning our taps again and our tools, we head out to tap trees.  This maple is so big we can put two buckets on one tree without it hurting the tree.





We use 1/2" cpvc pipe to make our taps.  It's easily available, safe and it works.  Cut the cpvc to 3 inch lengths, bevel the edge with a flat file and tap it into the whole you drill with a 5/8" wood bit. By summer the whole will be just about healed over and the cpvc is easy to clean thoroughly in hot soapy water.  On a good sap day where the night was below freezing and the day is sunny and up about 45 degrees, you can expect to find the buckets full.  Now we cook it down, but you'll have to wait until the next post for pictures of that process.....Watch the RECIPE page for some Whole Spelt Apple Pancakes to drizzle that delicious syrup all over.