At a glance: In the field…

Springboro Tree Farms sits on 35 acres of heavily wooded river frontage. We are blessed with a number of sugar maple trees on some nice hills. Thru the kindness of good neighbors, our sugaring operations also take advantage of high quality trees on the property to our south. The natural elevation changes found on the property are ideal for the sap lines that serve as the heart of our field operations.

The sap that flows downhill in the 3/16 inch lines (running from tree to tree) creates a natural vacuum which actually helps pull sap from the tree. Trees 10+ inches in diameter are tapped. Trees are tapped year after year with no damage to the tree. Taps are moved each year around the tree…2 inches higher or lower and 6 inchJim and drilles left or right. We have a few larger trees that accommodate multiple taps in a single tree.

Most of our production comes from 15 +/- lines (with 300 +/- taps) feeding into a 350 gallon tank that sits 75 ft below the Sugar Shack. At the height of the season the 350 gallon tank will fill at least once a day. Our pump (in a heated shelter at the collection tank) will empty that tank in about 30 minutes. That said, weather is our wild card. Too cold and the trees (and lines) will freeze up. Too warm and the sap will stop running. Ideally we need temps to shift from 20s at night and 40s during the day. Bright sunny days are also really helpful as the sun warms the tree.

In case you wondered, our sap lines stay up year round. While our pesky squirrels will sometimes cause a problem the many deer on the property simply step over them. Limbs and trees that fall during the year are another matter and each year there is a bit of maintenance required. In the off season the lines are filled with alcohol to keep the system clean.

[Top pictured: our friend and supplier/consultant Silas lends a hand and a strong back to help build the collection system. Side picture is Jim tapping a tree for the 2020 sugaring season.]