We went out to my folks Saturday and Sunday to collect sap. By Sunday afternoon we had over 500 gallons. This crazy warm February means we collected the amount of sap in just one week that we typically collect over three weeks!
I love being out in the woods this time of year. I remember from when I was little which trees were the heavy sap givers, and following my dad and Uncle Ben to tie jugs on the spiles with my little freezing cold hands. I pointed out the scars of previous maple sugaring years to the boys, and told them it's my dream they will tap these trees with their children some day.
Do you see the green in the picture above? The garlic mustard is greening, and we saw Spring Beauty up, and buds on the Spicebush trees. We also saw things we don't remember ever seeing during maple sugaring~ants on the taps, and even a honey bee floating in one of the jugs. We pulled the spiles Sunday afternoon, we have enough collected already to boil our two batches, for about 11 gallons of finished maple syrup.
We'll start boiling Wednesday afternoon, and boil two batches to take off the syrup Saturday afternoon. I'm looking forward to poking around the woods with my boys, sitting by the sugaring fire, meals on the campfire, exploring the creek and family company.