St Croix River Road Ramblings

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Maple Syruping

A Paint-by-Numbers masterpiece!
Planning for the Feb 27th (4th Thursday) Luck Museum program.  For many years we have been having a spring meeting to get us in the mood for tapping maple trees--usually mid March.  

Steven Anderson, of Anderson Maple between Luck and Cumberland, the maple syrup wholesaler and supplier in our area, is coming to tell us what is new in the world of syruping.  We usually have 40 or so people out, some producers, some who want to try it, and some who are just interested in the process. 

Steve tells me, that he and spouse Alison, have a brand new book out for beginners--Maple Syrup Book 

My own book 350 Years of Making Maple Syrup in America continues to sell decently on Amazon ( History of Maple Syruping )
dripping in a few bucks each month with bursts Dec-April as thoughts turn to making syrup.  

My own book chronicles my 6th great grandfather's day in 1650s when the Native Americans taught folks like ggggggggrandpappy how to syrup; the changes in syrup making and so including 100 photos and illustrations as well as many old time recipes when maple syrup and maple sugar were the sweeting available.  

Thomas Jefferson pushed the use of American maple sugar over that
slave made sugar from the Caribbean (and of course I include the 1700s original essay as part of the book).  

2012 was the poorest maple season in my memory.  2013 one of the very best.  What will happen in 2014 will not be known until the season is over--there is really no way of predicting the run each year, other than to say a brief spring with a quick warmup is usually a poor year, and a long drawn out season a good one.  Last year the sap really didn't start running until mid April, the time it normally starts, and then it ran continuously for 2 weeks at wonderfully fast rates. 

So, if you are in the area, drop in on the meeting at the end of February and see if you might want to tap those 3 maple trees in your yard.  Each tap hole can give 1 quart of syrup (40 quarts of sap) in a single season.