time to tap?

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thegawd
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time to tap?

Post by thegawd » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:37 pm

with the weather we have been having here the last few days in southern Ontario I've been wondering when it is time to tap? last year was my first time tapping and I believe a big success for a rookie. this year I have 10 massive maples picked out to tap. I still need to get some more supplies before I'm ready. So when is it time to tap? we havent had much of a winter yet so it cant be time right?

Thanks for any info! off to google.
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time to tap?

Post by poultry_admin » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:44 pm

Nope, just pruned a plum tree. No sap running...
If I were you, I would wait for the cold spell we get end of January/ beginning of February. And tap after that one.
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time to tap?

Post by thegawd » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:52 pm

thats what I was thinking n hoping. winter really needs to return and stick around. I didnt even think to go look at the trees behind the coop Lol. the ground around here hasnt really even frozen at all, I can dig a hole no problem right now and I did a few hours ago wondering what was going on in the garden. do you think this weird winter is going to screw up maple season? what if winter dosent come back the way its supposed to?
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WLLady
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time to tap?

Post by WLLady » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:54 pm

when the weather warms up after the second week of february.
DO NOT TAP NOW you will split your trees! Okay, i didn't mean to yell....caps lock....and i'm lying down in bed typing, waiting on my back to heal. LOL

if you drive a spile into the tree now, the wood will shrink when the weather nose dives again (end of the week) and the spile will crack the tree, then when it does warm up all your sap will leak out the crack and down the bark onto the ground. as martin said there's usually a cold couple of weeks end of january into february and after that when we see a good run of 4-5 days above zero during the day with good sun we'll get tapping. (alas, not this year).
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time to tap?

Post by WLLady » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:56 pm

oh and no, it won't mess up the syrup season. it really only needs a couple weeks of cold to reset everything.
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time to tap?

Post by thegawd » Sun Jan 01, 2017 4:01 pm

phew thanks for the info! its greatly appreciated. I did a google search and it dosent say any of the info you both provided. i really want to produce a years supply of syrup this year so I want to do it right! and since you really only have one chance to do it right i'll take all the advice I can get... I'll pay ya back in syrup. :-)

:beer2:
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time to tap?

Post by Maximus » Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:18 pm

@thegawd where are you grabbing your supplies from? I need to get some stuff too.
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time to tap?

Post by thegawd » Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:40 pm

ohhh I dont know... I didnt use any real maple syrup supplies last year for my most successful tapping. I used brass tapered air fittings on clear hoses ran to a 5 gallon food grade bottle used for wine making. but I think those will cost more than real taps. yesterday I priced out taps from a bunch of different sources. some were only like 30 cents and others were extremely expensive. ebay and amazon are a ripe off unless getting used. there were a few lots up to 250 taps that no one bid on yesterday that unfortunately ended, the minimum bid was like $10. that would have been a great deal but had to pass. I need 30 taps which I will probably just buy from Home Hardware. they seemed to be apx the same price as the maple syrup suppliers. I have no idea about quality but I think they are exactly the same.

I want to tap 10 massive maples. I need the following...

30 taps
t's
hose
7 - 55 gallon drums
1 small stainless steel drum to boil over the fire
I have 10 5 gallon food grade bottles.

and winter to return, she seems to be coming back on Wednesday, to allow me lots of time to get my supplies and be ready.

the very last day of maple season last year I collected 5 gallons of sap in one day from one tree. so my plan is to tap 10 trees and collect 50 gallons of sap per day over the course of a week. then turn 350 gallons of sap into 8.75 gallons of syrup which equals to about 33 liters of syrup. hopefully this will be more than a years supply. this may sound quite ambitions, especially for a rookie but this is my plan! :-)
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time to tap?

Post by poultry_admin » Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:42 pm

TSC has some usually.
Berry Hill has some as well as Atkinson.
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time to tap?

Post by WLLady » Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:55 pm

al, get the plastic spiles. they are easier to clean and older equipment can be soldered with lead, which you don't need to be eating.
Atkinson maple is in orillia and will mail out.
What we did was drop lines-we ordered the spiles (plastic blue ones) and then a roll of tubing. Cut a piece of tubing about 4-5 feet long, put the spile on one end. then we used to buy cat litter and milk bones in buckets, so we washed those and drilled a hole the size of the tube in the lid, and that was our collecting bucket. they would stay in the bush for 2-3 days in the snow before we collected (collected more often when weather was getting warmer). the nights would freeze the sap in the bucket and keep the next day's collection cold. we collected into an water barrel, and then got a 2x3 foot pan fabricated by a metal bender that @poultry_admin knew. much cheaper than buying. someday i will buy an evaporator LOL. our fire pit was a simple a brick lined "pit" built to the dimensions of the pan, so the pan edges sit on the brick. we lined it with firebrick so we didn't destroy the a brick. we got the fire brick at atkinson maple. money well spent!
used this set up for many years.
i can't wait to get back out there doing it.
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