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March 2019
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Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 7:37 pm

In December and February  we completed the rework of  about 600 taps on the tube lines in the NE Corner of the Harmon Woods.   This is part of our ongoing plan to rework all of our lines over the next few years.   We are adding in new trees and switching to the new clear disposable 5/16″ health spiles attached to 36 inch drops. In 2014 we reworked the home woods 1000 taps and in 2015 about 500 taps on the south side of the Harmon woods.  The longer drops allows us to have a larger area to  drill tap holes,  the clear spiles eliminate the growth of bacteria in the tap hole to keep sap flowing and the new lines eliminate air leaks and increases the sap flow by creating a natural vacuum system. 

This year Brent, Mike and Dave tapped the home woods on February 26th.  We used 6 Makita electric drills with rechargeable battery packs with the 5/16″ drill bits. Mike was filling in for his dad Kevin who was in Hawaii on vacation.  On February 27 and 28 Brent, Mike, Dave, Brandon, Jordan and Vinnie tapped the Harmon woods.  On March 5th   thanks to Jim, Dave, Brad,Bruce,Mason, Jordan,Kari, Liz, Jeff, Ellie,Vinnie, Laura, Vince & Luca we ended up hanging 456 bags in the Harmon woods.  The was the earliest tapping for Weiss Woods since we atarted in i991 and is probably due the the El Nino weather pattern.  The earliest tapping ever was when Jim helped grandpa radle tap the Brady woods  in mid February in the mid 70’s.  The temperatures  have been much higher than normal so far this year which has resulted in no snow in the woods.  The sap is running good due to the wet conditions from the high rainfall last fall and the sugar content is 2.38% vs last years 2.24%.  This is probably due to the greatest growing season ever last summer - corn per acre was the highest ever and my garden produce was the best I’ve ever had.   The weather is to turn back to normal by 3/17 so we are expecting a large sap run during that cold snap.     
The first sap was collected and delivered to Pittmans Maple Syrup processing plant February 27th.   Many of the producers did not tap that weekend but we were happy we did since we collected 3038 gallons of sap.   12,000 gallons of sap was collected Sunday Noon through Monday afternoon March 7th.  One of largest runs we ever had for a 24 hours period.  As of today we have collected 22,320 gallons of sap which has resulted in 618 gallons of maple syrup.  
The lines have been in good condition with very few leaks and we only found 4 trees that were missed by the tappers.  Jim had replaced the fernco connection on the home woods tank to eliminate any change of leaking and catastrophic failure.  The old fernco was cut 1/2 way through so it was a good maintenance plan to replace it.  
Mike and Brad are reviewing specifications for a security camera to monitor the HarmonWoods pickup tanks and blue bags.  They have been authorized to spend up to $400 to install a cellular interactive system that any WW owner and Pittmans could monitor.  This is another step we are taking to eliminate tanks or bags overflowing. 
The sap            

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