The following pest management report is provided by Jennifer Llewellyn, Tree Nursery and Landscape Specialist with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Jennifer’s primary focus is on insect pest and disease management of conifer and deciduous trees and shrubs, to assist commercial tree nursery operators and provide guidance for managers of trees in established urban forest landscapes. Forest Health Specialists with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry share a similar role for rural forested regions.
The 2018 maple syrup production season is completed now in Ontario and producers are busy cleaning sap tubing and processing equipment. Ontario producers are reminded to please complete the Maple Production Survey that is organized and distributed by the Ontario Maple Syrup Producers’ Association. Every completed survey will increase the accuracy of the final maple syrup industry production report for the 2018 season.
Thank you to the many maple syrup producers who contributed sap harvest and syrup quality updates throughout the season for the preparation of this report, the Ontario Maple Syrup Production Report.
Many producers find this time of year is best to make repairs while the end-of-season condition of vacuum tubing and other equipment is still fresh in their minds. Modern sap tubing remains permanently installed in the sugar bush during its 10 to 15 year lifespan, where annual maintenance and cleaning will help ensure the tubing performs best during each future harvest. Continue reading
The weather has been harsh on sugar bushes in Ontario over the past two weeks. From high wind to ice storm – buds, twigs, branches and anchoring roots have been tested for their strength and resilience. Fortunately, this time of year the trees are rehydrating, which makes them a little more flexible compared to their drier condition during winter. No serious damage is reported from wind or ice in most areas, with some clearing and repair of vacuum tubing required. Continue reading
In earliest regions of southwestern Ontario, the maple syrup production season will draw to a close soon. Unseasonably cold weather has helped to slow bud development and prolong sap flow over the previous two weeks, however the increasing day length and intensity of the sun has warmed branches and buds. Buds on maple trees are swelling and elongating and bud break will soon occur. Prince Edward County reported buddy off-flavours have begun on April 4th and sap harvest has ended there for the season.
Early areas, commercial producers who use modern vacuum collection for sap harvest are reporting very good yields of high quality syrup this year. A few producers exceeded the provincial average of 1.1 litres syrup per tap. Continue reading
Maple syrup production for the past two weeks
The 2018 maple syrup season has been progressing steadily forward in southern regions of the province over the past two weeks. From southwestern Ontario over to Ottawa and the eastern counties, sap flow and maple syrup processing has been very active with only a few stalls due to cold weather.
In the north, very cold nighttime temperatures have persisted to deeply freeze the trees and then hover below or near zero Celsius during the day to keep trees frozen. Excellent sap flow conditions are forecast for the north. Northern regions typically start several weeks after the earliest areas and 2018 is still considered a normal season for northern producers. Continue reading
The 2018 maple syrup season is underway across much of southern Ontario, while northern producers are prepared and ready for sap harvest. Syrup producers in the south have had several good sap runs during the end of February and have been boiling again during the first week of March. Continue reading
The extended weather forecast predicts that thawing temperatures and sap flow conditions will continue for a few more days in many regions of the province, including northern regions. Completion of tapping in sugar bushes will be a top priority for producers to harvest early sap flows.
Freezing night-time temperatures and thawing daytime temperatures, for example -5 ⁰C night and +5 ⁰C day, occurring consecutively over several days will provide ideal sap flow conditions.
Colder winter-like conditions are expected to return after this thawing trend to hopefully slow sap harvest and allow producers to catch up on preparation. Continue reading