2024 – Another Satisfying Sugaring Season!

Like 2023, the 2024 season was warmer than usual. Much warmer. Last year (in 2023) we tapped 400+ maple trees on February 4. Anticipating an even warmer 2024 season we tapped earlier this year (January 18th ) — in the snow while the trees were still frozen.

In addition we replaced all the spiles (tree taps) and sterilized drill bits at the drilling of each tap hole to mitigate the effect of microbiological activity that causes the sap stop running as temperatures rise later in the season. We were ready.

But even with that good preparation and plenty of help from friends of the farm who jumped in to lend a hand on tapping day, a near record breaking warm February brought the season to a close February 26 . . . about three weeks early!

The result? Our sap yield was 2,867 gallons. Typically a maple tree will yield at least 10 gallons of sap per tap. Here’s a comparison to past performance from the 400 or so maple trees we tap.

Year Gallons
2019 4,527
2020 3,405
2021 3,335
2022 4,071
2023 4,035
2024 2,867

The good news is that we were able to produce 50.5 gallons of maple syrup. That 2024 sap-to-syrup conversion rate was 56.7 gallons of sap per gallon of syrup…our best ever. In past years our sap-to-syrup conversion rate has been in the high 60s to low 70s. Not so good.

We attribute this year’s improvement to:

incoming sap with a little higher than average sugar content (Mother nature?)
better control of microbiological activity in the tap hole, sap line and collection tanks (A little extra work.)
faster removal of water from the sap (Improved process control in the sugar shack.)
So are we satisfied? Absolutely – it was another good season. We had a lot of fun working alongside a lot of good friends. It’s a sweet life for sure.

We’re also thankful we’ll have enough syrup to produce another batch of Bourbon Barrel Aged Maple Syrup again this year. We have a good inventory now but to keep up with demand we’ll start another batch in June that we will then bottle in November. You may recall that the aging process takes about 5 months but it’s well worth the wait.

But hey – you really don’t have to wait. Check out the Products section of the website to learn where you can purchase a bit of the “sweet life” right now!

And thanks again for following along and supporting Springboro Tree Farms.