Pandemic – Not a Word in Mother Nature’s Dictionary

We have heard the P word incessantly over the past year; however, that word means nothing to Mother Nature.  Our maple trees are still in the woods, the sap will still flow, and we will be making a new crop of maple syrup very soon.  Politics, viruses, and even snowstorms will not stop the sap from flowing from our maple trees in February, March, and April.  The drought last summer may affect the amount of sap, but it will not stop the sap from flowing.  Mother Nature Rules. 

I am not taking the pandemic lightly.   At the sugarhouse we have taken additional precautions and sanitation measures as recommended by the CDC for the safety of our staff and customers.  The number of people impacted by this virus through job loss, illness, hospitalization, and death is most distressing to me.   In the 74 years that I have been around maple operations (including 46 seasons at Mapletree Farm), I have never experienced economic, weather, climate change, bugs and insects, or anything that has impacted the maple industry like Covid-19.  In March, our annual Maple Open House had to be cancelled, the number of visitors during our peak season dwindled to nearly none, and maple product sales slowed.  Like other businesses, we made adjustments – we introduced our popular Bourbon barrel-aged maple syrup, increased our shipping services, relied more on social media and extended our hours to compensate.  Now we are gearing up for Mother Nature to provide us with a bountiful few weeks of maple sap flows.  Yes, we have already started to walk and clear our sap lines.  Summer, fall, and winter storms have caused numerous trees to blow down across those lines.  The rule for sap lines is: straight, tight, and downhill!  Once the 30 plus miles of sap lines are cleared and tight, we will start tapping.  We will be tapped out and waiting to make maple syrup sometime around February 20th.   Mother Nature does not wait, and we must be ready when prime weather conditions indicate good sap flows.  One thing is for sure – sap will flow soon, and we will be turning it into maple syrup and related products.  We appreciate your support and look forward to your next visit.       

All the best,

Dean

2020 – Season #45 at Mapletree Farm

The 2020 sugaring season, (our 45th!), is here and, as usual, we are busy at work here in East Concord.  As of this post, we are nearly all tapped and have started making syrup. If you are planning on visiting during sugaring season and want to see gathering/boiling in action, please be sure to check the website or give a call first to make sure the weather is cooperating and the farm is open before making the drive.

We continue to make small improvements to the sugarhouse.  Most recently, Dean has unpacked some of his collection of antique and vintage sugaring artifacts to display around the building (we will have to build some more shelves to hold them all!). Meanwhile, Robert has been working to improve the pan lifting system to help make us more efficient and safer during clean-up. 

Blessed with an unusually mild winter and little snow, Dean, Chris and Robert have been diligently working in the woods replacing some of the older tubing systems as well as a new suspended mainline to the sugarhouse.  Another major project involved upgrading old tubing and preparing for additional taps at two existing sugar bushes along Oak Hill Road.  This project required running about 15,000 feet of new tubing.  We are now using sap spouts even smaller than the “5/16” (0.31”) Health Spout.”  They are only .172” in diameter and are thin walled to conform to the tree.  Yes, we still get as much sap while wounding the tree considerably less. 

You may have noticed we relaunched our website, Mapletreefarmnh.com, in 2018.  Among other things, a shopping cart was added to make it easier for our customers to place orders.  We update the website with the latest happenings at Mapletree Farm so make sure to periodically check it out.  In addition, Mapletree Farm is now on Facebook (user name – Mapletree Farm) and Instagram (user name Mapletreefarmnh).  Please like and follow us by clicking on the links at the bottom of the page.  These platforms allow us to more readily interact with our followers and vice-versa.  Here you will see more pictures of year-round activities at the farm.  They also offer an easy way for you to find out about any events, specials or limited edition maple products.   Speaking of which, have you picked up your Mapletree Farm dark robust syrup packaged in a specialty glass hockey player bottle yet?   Make sure you do before they are sold out.

This year the traditional New Hampshire Maple Open House Weekend is March 21st and 22nd and Mapletree Farm will be in full swing.  Come see how our maple syrup is made, filtered and packaged. Take a tour through the planted maple orchard, watch the sap dripping into buckets and traveling down the tubing network into the sugarhouse.  And of course, sample our maple products including maple syrup, maple cream and sugar-on-snow. Oh, yeah –  we will have a surprise or two to unveil, but more on that later.  And as always feel free to ask us questions.  We love to talk to people about maple!

Stay tuned to our website: mapletreefarmnh.com for “What’s Sappening” at East Concord’s historic sugarhouse.

Come and have a Blast!