Tapping the Trees: Making Maple Syrup

Feb 19, 2016

Do you have sugar maple tree in your backyard? If so, now's the time to tap it if you want to make your own syrup. Jesse Randall, a forester with Iowa State University Extension, says that the freezing nights and warm days of late winter get the sap flowing. 

"It’s a function of being warm, but it’s also a function of day length. And we’re racing against the day length clock. What will happen is the buds will begin to swell, and that changes the flavor of the syrup," Randall explains. 

During this hour of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Randall and DNR District Forester Mark Vitosh about tapping sugar maple trees and about trimming oak trees. Iowa State University Extension horticulture expert Richard Jauron also joins the conversation to answer listener questions.