Maple Syrup Season in Vermont
It's March, and that means it's time for sugaring season here in Vermont!
Here at Lenny's, we love our maple syrup. Now that we have entered the month of March, we know sugarmakers all over the state will be collecting sap from their tapped maple trees, and eventually turning it into sweet, sticky maple syrup. With the winter season officially coming to a close, we are entering a period of frozen nights and sunny, warmer days, meaning that soon, the sap will be flowing!
How it's Done:
The typical maple sugaring season in Vermont will last from 4 to 6 weeks, when the freeze/thaw pattern is at its most productive. This is when the sugary sap gets forced to flow out of a tapped tree, due to pressure from freezing at night, and then thawing again during the day time.
The sap that is collected, either in pipelines or by hand in buckets, is transported back to the sugarhouse, where it will be boiled down, resulting in pillowy clouds of sweet steam. The air in the woods will be filled with that unmistakable sugary scent during this process, and the water boils off as the sap starts to caramelize. As this process continues, the sap gets closer to what we know and recognize as maple syrup.
It takes a trained eye, from years of experience, to know exactly when to draw off the syrup, without being premature or letting it boil too long, resulting in a burnt product. After it is removed, it will still need to be filtered and graded in order to be sold.
The sugaring season will end when the days become warmer, and the trees begin to see their buds turn into leaves. All of the equipment will need to cleaned and stored in preparation for the next season, and the delicious syrup that was produced can now be sold and enjoyed - and you'll find it in many forms: classic maple syrup, maple candies, maple-flavored ice-cream, and much more!
Throughout this whole process, the people collecting and producing the syrup will need to make sure they have the clothes and gear needed for the job - everything from proper boots, warm jackets, and durable work gloves.
If you're local to Vermont, or just like visiting, be sure to check out these great events based around our beloved maple syrup: