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Thread: Black Maple?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    82

    Default Black Maple?

    3rd year tapping. I tapped some new woods and ran my first lines this year. 75 taps on 3/16...3 lines. After collecting 200 gallons+ and finishing with just over 2 gallons, I started to wonder what type of maple trees I was dealing with. I tested the sap and it's barely 1%.

    Attached are some pictures. Are these Black Maples? I was told Black Maples are good sugar producers.

    tree.jpg

    leaf2.jpg

    buds.jpg

    Could I expect my sugar to rise as the season progresses or is 1% all I can expect from these trees? I'm 400 gallons of sap into the season and only made 4 gallons. I'm only selling a small batch to cover cost...the rest will be for family and friends....so its not a huge concern. I might need to build an RO setup for next season to help.

    Thanks!
    Steve

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Grenville
    Posts
    816

    Default

    Very cool, I've never heard of tapping black maple! Maybe PM Dr Tim Perkins, he's the expert.

    ETA: Maybe they are good producers, in terms of volume. That doesn't necessarily mean a high sugar content, though.
    Been tapping since 2008, but mostly unexceptional til recent years.
    2014 - 18 taps/6 trees, 407l sap, 19l syrup
    2015 - 18 taps/6 trees, 424l sap and 20.75l syrup
    2016 - 18 taps/6 trees..701l sap, 24l syrup
    2017 - 17 taps/6 trees...474l sap, 15.75l syrup

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Oneida NY
    Posts
    8,112

    Default

    Black maples are supposed to be up with Sugar maples, but only if they have a good top. It's the leaves that make the sugar. What diameter is the tree in the picture? it looks too small for 2 taps just judging the spile size related to the tree trunk. On gravity a tree should be at least 18" diameter to get 2 taps, about 20"+ if on vacuum. I don't put 2 taps until 23-24".
    As the freeze thaw cycles become more frequent, the sugar does go up.
    Dave Klish about 1320 taps in '15, down to about 700 in '16, up to 850 for 2018?
    2012 Mahindra 36 HP 4x4/ loader/cab/heat/AC:-)
    added a gooseneck equipment trailer and F350 to tow it to haul more sap
    3x8 raised flue evaporator
    250 GPH converted to electric, RO by Ray Gingerich
    6.32 KW solar system, 1.48KW is battery backed up, all net metered
    http://s1041.photobucket.com/albums/...anssugarhouse/
    website: www.cnymaple.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    82

    Default

    It's mostly around 18". I measured an 18" tree...hugged it, then just went from there. (treehugger...I know...haha)

    I'm glad you mentioned the tops. I guess I never really knew that. My trees are close together and the tops probably aren't huge. They are on the edge of a field and get lots of sun, so they run really well.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Central Ohio
    Posts
    271

    Default

    Many of my trees that I tap here are black maples. Except for a different leaf, they are nearly indistinguishable from sugar maples. Black maples and sugar maples hybridize and create a tree that looks somewhere between them. Generally the sugar content and sap production are identical. Some literature indicates that black maples grow slightly slower than sugars.
    Central Ohio
    Leader WSE 2x6
    Old metal corn crib converted to "The Shack"
    Smoky Lake 6 gallon water jacket canner

    I don't like the trend:
    2017: 100 taps, buckets, 15 gallons syrup
    2016: 100 taps, buckets, 30 gallons syrup
    2015: 100 taps, buckets, 34 gallons syrup
    2014: 100 taps, buckets, 30 gallons syrup
    2013: 100 taps, buckets, 52 gallons syrup
    2012: 100 taps, buckets, 37 gallons syrup
    2011: 93 taps, buckets, 47 gallons syrup

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