RicelandMeadows


Tank You, Tank You Very Much!
July 30, 2015, 9:23 pm
Filed under: July 2015 | Tags: , , , ,
1,100 Gallon Tank Ready for Install

1,100 Gallon Tank Ready for Install

July 30, 2015

Can you see my lip curling as you read the title? I am very happy to be bringing home my maple sap storage tank. It has been constructed three months ahead of schedule. I am very glad that we built the sugarhouse addition during the rainy days of June. Now, when the cold autumn winds are whipping across the farm, I can be snug in the sugarhouse plumbing up this awesome addition to our operation.

The tank was built by H&M Fabricating on Jug road in Burton, Ohio. These men build all sorts of maple equipment. They are very good at their craft. The use the equipment that they build. They understand the maple business from the tree to the bottle. Their welds are top shelf. Their products are tested before leaving the shop. I have known these men for years now and will recommend them highly.

It seems funny to be thinking about maple syrup season in mid-summer, but I think about it often. I am looking forward to the ease of cleaning this big tank. It will reduce many hours for me, compared to our old set up. I am very grateful to have saved the money for this key piece of equipment. It not only holds 1,100 gallons of sap, but it also will feed the evaporator in my gravity set up.

This reminds me of the recent speltz harvest. It too was gained by hard work, good weather and a blessing from Heaven.

Horse fuel!

Horse fuel!



Getting Ready
March 10, 2015, 10:32 pm
Filed under: March 2015 | Tags: , , , ,
Preparation

Preparation

March 10, 2015

Today, we started tapping our maple trees. I have NEVER worked that hard, at that job, in my life! The snow is deeper than my boots. Much of it reaches to mid-thigh. It is heavy, wet and won’t hold a fat guy up. I slogged through it for five hours. We tapped 375 and still have 425 to go.

The smaller trees were starting to drip, but no big run yet. I am very thankful. I sure hope we get done tapping before we have to start gathering 😮 That job would crowd me pretty hard. I am sure we will be boiling by the weekend, but I hope not to have to gather until Thursday afternoon. I still have lots of stuff to get ready. We went from artic cold to a normal spring in 48 hours and I haven’t caught up yet.

I did finish the new drain on my refurbished gathering tank this evening, thanks to help from a good friend. Our old drain was only a 3/4 inch opening. It took almost thirty minutes to drain the 300 gallon tank. Tonight, we finished a new two inch drain, complete with a hose coupling to unload from either side of the tank.

So even though I will be massaging cramps out of my legs tonight, I am satisfied that we are well on our way to the maple syrup season. It will be just a matter of days before someone asks me…. Hey good looking, what ya got cooking?