Pure maple syrup is made by concentrating the slightly sweet sap of the sugar maple tree. The basics needed for making maple syrup are sugar maple trees from Vermont and then boiling as a method of concentrating the sap into syrup.
As winter comes to an end, usually in late February or early March, sugarmakers prepare for their annual harvest of their beloved maple trees. The group of maple trees that is used is called a sugarbush, we have quite a large one! The sugarmaker prepares his or her sugarbush by clearing access roads in the snow, removing fallen branches, and setting up sap tubing systems that are miles long.
The length of the sugaring season is totally dependent upon the weather. It may last only a few weeks, or as long as six or eight weeks. As the days become increasingly warmer, and the nights rarely get below freezing, the buds on the branches of the maple trees begin to swell, marking the end of the season. Sugarmakers know it is now time to clean up all the lines, spouts, tanks, and miles of tubing with plenty of hot water so that the equipment can be put into storage and ready for the next winter.
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