Thursday, March 17, 2011

first harvest of 2011

diving right in again.  my lovely, lovely snow is almost completely gone.  we have heard the sounds of the beginning of spring.  we have seen the robins working to gather materials for their nests.  the outdoors smells of wet damp earth.  i can no longer pretend the winter is still here.  all of the broken toys and bits of trash that  we never picked up are glaring at me as the snow slowly reveals them.  yes, spring is definitely on its way.  the first action our little farm sees in late winter/early spring or more appropriately, mud season is maple sugaring.  i always look forward to a first harvest before any veggies can really even think of growing in our gardens.  we usually try to make enough syrup to last the entire year since it is by far a luxury that we normally wouldn't be able to afford for every pancake, french toast, and baking need.  this winter was the first time we ran out and i did end up buying two quarts to make it until now.  we were gifted 80 gallons of sap this year from some friends who had excess (is there really such a thing?).  in the world of boiling and syrup making...40 gallons of sap equals one precious gallon of syrup (which is what we usually get!).  this year so far in the first week of the sap run we have boiled 70 gallons.  we still have around forty that we haven't gotten to and we are hoping to receive more from our friends.  at this point in the season we have already put up 2 gallons of syrup for our upcoming year!  we are hoping to make some maple sugar and maple sugar candy and more syrup, of course.  my goal is to have some to spread around!   

ricks car loaded down with sap
buckets awaiting their turn...
our boil pit.
the bounty!
mud is here...
...a boys favorite pastime...MUD!
asher joins us for his first boil.
after our first winter of beekeeping...they came flying out on this warm day!!


  1. I agree with the snow going away and leaving the ugly. ;) We have a bit of cleaning and raking to do too. What beautiful syrup and wonderful friends who gave you extra.

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  3. Love this post, Pennie! Please remind me that I need to ask you about canning the liquid gold.

  4. I really admire the work involved in making some of this precious golden nectar. Thanks for the lovely photos of the process!
    xo Jules

  5. I had no idea it took that much sap to make a gallon of syrup. It must smell heavenly at your house!

    Hope all is well for you and your family otherwise! ♥Kyndale