…well the niece and nephews were out last weekend and they don’t get out that much to the country so I wanted to have some fun outdoorsy things to do to keep them busy..there is always the beaver dam, collecting eggs from the chickens ( which they always seem amazed by! ) and since it is maple syrup season I figured I would tap some trees and show them how to get maple syrup for themselves..or at very least how to tap a tree and then I told them the process the sap goes through to become syrup.
The tools needed are:
- a wood drill with a bit that is slightly bigger than the tap you are going to put in
- maple taps..I bought mine off of eBay.com second hand 2 years ago
- a hammer to tap in the tappy tap tap
- small amount of wire
- wire snips
- container to hold sap..mine are ghetto…I had no proper containers so I had to improvise.
It is really simple to actually..make sure the drill is charged. mine lasted 2 taps. At least it was enough to show the kids how it worked. Drill the hole 2-3 feet off the ground on the south side of the tree that gets sun. Syrup runs when it is hot and the sun helps with that. Have you ever noticed that when you sit in the sun for a couple of hours you seem warm? Well the same technology which powers the sun can also make sap run up the inside of a tree! Technology at work for you!! Yes, so 2-3 feet. Drill the hole..I go around 2 inches in.
Tap in the tap. Just tap it in. Tap, tap, tap…just tap it in. It wants to go into the tree..its the taps hole so just tap it in. Sorry..once I started it reminded me of Happy Gilmore. If you have no idea what I am talking about just smile and nod. ANyway, tap it until it is firmly set as it will have a litre of sap in a container attached to it so you want to be sure it is secure.
Take a nail and make a hole in the container you will be using to attached it to the tap you just tapped in.
I used a large cranberry bottle, a small water bottle and a pasta sauce bottle to collect the sap. Ghetto! I am sure that a professional maple syrup producer would not be pleased to see me using whatever I could..but ( once again ) my philosopy is to get it done, not make it pretty..at least in the first iteration. ( which is why my posts also have so many spelling mistakes! )
Put wire through holes and attach it to the tap so that the drip from the tap goes into said container.
That is it really..repeat the process on as many trees and taps you have..now you wait for warm days and cold nights!
Oh..some of you might be wondering how to know which trees to tap since it is winter and some of the maple trees are difficult to identify without leaves on them..Well I have developed a sureproof winter method for maple tree idenitification…I memorize which trees are maples in the summer. It is foolproof! hehe.
Gonna wait until I have a couple of days worth of sap saved before I reduce the sap and make syrup..don’t worry…I will post up!