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Thread: Maple Syrup

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,368

    Question

    Has anyone made maple syrup from softwood (Silver) maples? Thinking of giving it a try this year, and I've got four huge ones right by the house.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Fremont, New Hampshire, USA
    Posts
    695

    Post

    The sap from a silver maple has a lower sugar content compared to... let's say a sugar maple, but it will boil down to a syrup. I've heard of folks tapping river birches for syrup.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,368

    Post

    Yeah, I've been told that box elders work too, here I've always thought they weren't good for anything!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    crown point, NY, USA
    Posts
    971

    Post

    Ya you can tap silver maples. I've never use silver maple sap alone but have added it to sugar maple sap. Basically you just need more of it. I don't do maple anymore. I love the stuff mixed into my milk. But nowadays I just do bees.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,336

    Post

    The Indians (who invented making Maple syrup and Maple sugar) also do birch sap.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    North Alabama, SW Kentucky
    Posts
    1,914

    Post

    Micheal Bush,
    I have read a number of your posts in which you make reference to some American Indian affiliation that you have. Not that race is ever an "issue", of course, I just find it interesting. So few people have Indian affiliates. One child told me that she thought all Indians were dead.
    Coyote

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

    Post

    I am 16th cherokee for sure as my sister could not find any records on my grandmother's side after a couple generations back. Many native americans hid or ran from their culture and many are now trying to get back and save it. I think it is to late for alot of their traditions. From what I have seen the ceramonies were pasted down but little else.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,336

    Post

    By culture, I am Lakota. By blood I'm a sixteenth American Indian, but a few generations ago no one was very proud of it, at least not in a public sort of way. My Great Grandfather, who I remember, who was 1/2 Indian got land in the Cherokee strip Land run in Oklahoma, so being an Indian would have been a disadvantage at the time. He claimed to be Irish. He was 1/2 Irish.

    So I can't say for sure what tribe, but evidence would narrow it probably to either Lakota or Ojibwa. Two enemies.

    My grandchildren are more than half American Indian and that is too mixed up to keep track of how much from what tribe.

    We will raise them Lakota.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Bridgewater VT. USA
    Posts
    238

    Post

    Hi all
    back to the silver maple the sap is ok but the run is much shorter as this the first maple to bud out, if you have ever made maple syrup from budding trees you won't do it again. The native american heritage thread was interesting too,most of us "natives here in the northeast have some link to a native american heritage but it is much to diluted to be visible.
    stuart

  10. #10
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Post

    Yes, a few years ago I experimented with it.
    I got an 3/4 auger bit and cut a section of garden hose and with a some persuasion pushed and turned it into the 1 inch deep hole.
    I put a nail into the tree above the hose and then I hung a bucket covered from the hose down over the top of the bucket. I think I used aluminum foil. I collected 20 gallons in two day's time. It boiled down to a pint of syrup on the woodstove over a period of 4-5 days.
    Good stuff.

    Jason

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Lakeland FL
    Posts
    848

    Cool

    started taping trees saterday we got 2 quarts of syrup already and the sap hasnt even started flowing good

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Indiana, PA, US
    Posts
    8

    Post

    I live in western PA and tap a lot of red maples a few silver and some sugars. I'd like to have enough sugar maples to pass on the soft maples like they can in vermont, but they all make good syrup and I dont have enough to be picky about the type. So tap your silvers and enjoy the syrup!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Bend, OR USA
    Posts
    93

    Post

    I ran across a Dept. of Agriculture at a library in Washington state that talked about tapping the bigleaf maples for syrup. It said that you have have to boil more water out bigleaf maple sap than you do the sugar maple, but you can get a lot of sap out of a bigleaf maple. I believe it's the largest species of maple in the world.

    Roger

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Indiana, PA, US
    Posts
    8

    Post

    If you had a lot of those big leaf maples and were thinking of making syrup on a semi commercial scale, the thing to do is to get a sap hydrometer and test the sugar content in some sap samples. If it's low , say under 1.5 percent sugar, the thing to do would be to use reverse osmosis to concentrate the sap before boiling it down. That would make it more economically feasible, assuming over 1,000 taps.

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