Temperatures are fairly good for maple sugaring this year; Highs in the 40s and lows below freezing create good conditions for sap flow. However, my notes tell me that I’m definitely getting less than prior years. The only thing I can come up with–and this is just a guess–is the lack of moisture in the ground. I think the trees just don’t have as much as they “normally” do. Maybe this is due to the lack of snow to recharge water near the surface. Also, we had a warm/dry period in early January that brought us somewhat through the “mud season” and dried things out somewhat. I know this is the case where I tap since the spring-seep I normally walk around is dry. Sure, the ground is still wet, but usually things are soupy this time of year. Maybe this flying “sap snow’ and rain will help. We’ll see.

Ryan Trapani

Director of Forest Services

Catskill Forest Association