Maple Syrup Season Will Start Late

The wild winter we’ve had means the maple syrup season will be starting late this year in Renfrew County. 

Local producer Ray Bonenberg from Mapleside Sugar Bush near Rankin says historically, the sap starts flowing after March 20th.

But this year, trees are still so frozen that they’ll need a stretch of much milder days before it begins to flow.

“These trees need at least three days of plus 12, up to plus 15 weather, believe it or not, to let go, we call it in sugaring terms” Bonenberg told Star 96.7. 

“And then we need a constant swing of temperature of minus 8 and night, and plus 8 during the day, ideally, for the sap to run”.

Bonenberg says the amount of ice and snow has made preparations more difficult.

“We don’t know what it’s going to bring us, but certainly getting prepared has been a challenge for most sugar makers”, Bonenberg said.

However, there are some silver linings.

Bonenberg says the melt should supply the trees with enough water for a very promising sap flow. 

“Once all that water gets into the soil and the root system, the maple tree is going to pick up that water over the next four to six weeks and produce sap”.

A ceremonial first tapping is set for Saturday at 11 a.m. at Mapleside Sugar Bush.