Upcoming Maple Events

There is a flurry of upcoming maple programming and events to consider.

Of course, the International Maple Conference just concluded up in Lacrosse, Wisconsin held over the latter part of last week and weekend.

Next weekend, the Ohio Maple Producers Association are convening for a great line-up of food, fellowship, tours, and syrup contests.  Dates are Nov 4-5 and additional details can be found here.

Just a few days after, Seldom Seen Farm will host a Woodland Wednesday program from 4:00-7:00 PM on November 9th.  In collaboration with Geauga Soil and Water Conservation District, Geauga County Farm Bureau, NRCS, and host Seldom Seen Farm, speakers will discuss the relationship between modern forestry and the maple industry.  Specific topics will include thinning, tree crown development, soil conditions, and maple tubing in the sugarbush.  All are welcome to this free outdoor event that will benefit the landowner and woodsman alike.  Please RSVP to Kevin Holy at 440-596-9717 or via email (kevin@seldomseenmaple.com).

Lake Erie Maple Expo, the following weekend of November 11 and 12, will host its usual showcase of vendors, talks, and all and everything else maple.

Completing the first half of November flurry, Penn State Extension Educator Brian Walsh will discuss what is known about the spotted lanternfly and observations about maple trees that provide insight as to the impact the insect could have on the industry.  Pennsylvania has endured a longer stint of spotted lanternfly infestation than Ohio, and we can learn more about what to potentially expect by seeing what has been learned by our neighbors to the east.  Register for the November 16 – 10:00 AM webinar here.

Out of the Woods Webinar Series Continues

Future Generations University, one of our primary partners with the USDA ACER-funded work, continues to march along producing excellent monthly content through their webinar series “Out of the Woods.”  The next 2 months are scheduled for February 17th and March 17th.

For February, Cara Rose – from Pocahontas County’s (West Virginia) Community & Visitors Bureau – will discuss how to incorporate tourism practices into one’s maple enterprise.  You can register for the February 17th webinar here.  To stay plugged in to Future Generations’ broader swath of maple-related research and outreach, their Facebook page is a great follow.

Cara’s webinar topic looks like it will be somewhat similar to a great presentation by Rob Leeds of OSU Extension at the 2021 December Ohio Maple Days in Ashland.  There is a huge amount of information packed into Rob’s presentation slides from that day, and he updates a site for Ohio agritourism that is worth bookmarking and regularly checking for ideas of how to up the attractiveness of your maple enterprise.

2022 Maple Season Forecast from a Climate Expert

Please join us at 7:00 PM, Thursday January 13th to learn from OSU Extension’s Aaron Wilson about how weather, climate, and maples interrelate.  His talk has immediate implications for this current year’s sap run and a long ways into the future.  Those of you that have heard Aaron speak before know that it is a real treat to learn from his expertise.  Register here at the Woodland Stewards website.

Dr. Aaron Wilson is an Atmospheric Research Scientist with the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center and Climate Specialist with a joint appointment in OSU Extension.  He will shed some light on how the coming maple season may turn out.  Dr. Wilson’s presentation will include the 2022 short-term forecast as well as how our changing climate may alter maple production in the future.  Future climate projections pose significant challenges to the future of maple production across southern maple producing zones.  Planning for the future and considering how best to meet those challenges is crucial for sustained maple production in the long-term.

Synopsis:  From increasing winter and spring temperatures to extreme weather events, climate change poses a risk to the maple syrup production community. These changes alter short-term conditions like quality and quantity of sap, while long-term changes in climate are having impacts on the health of trees, roots, and shifting areas where production is viable. Projections of future climate pose significant challenges to the future of maple production across southern zones. How might the community plan for and mitigate these impacts? Join us as we explore the influence of weather and climate change on the maple industry and discuss the implications for the future.

Register TODAY!

Maple Certification Course Available

Registration is open for a Maple Certification course offered by Future Generations University, one of our principal collaborating institutions.  Designed for central Appalachian sugarmakers, the course is a combination of online trainings followed by mentored in-field experiences throughout the sugaring season.  Visit the link for more information and sign-up!  The first online class begins Monday, November 8th.

Online Maple Business Planning Courses Available

University of Vermont is offering two online short courses for current and prospective maple producers this fall.  Each course includes four classes (1.5 hours each), once per week, in addition to assignments that get participants completing real time analysis and making immediate decisions to enhance their business.  Mark Cannella, Extension Associate Professor, will instruct both courses.  Registration is now open!

  • Maple Business Planning  This four-session course guides participants through key aspects of preparing a business plan. Each session covers concepts in strategic planning, analyzing risks, marketing and planning improvements. Students prepare sections of their own plan over the four-week timeframe of the course. Register Here for Maple Business Planning. Course Dates: 7:00 – 8:30 EST pm EST on Tuesdays: 10/26, 11/2, 11/9 and 11/16.

 

  • Maple Financial Planning  This four-session course guides participants through the basics of financial statements and financial planning concepts. Topics included cash flow, balance sheets, sales forecasting and calculating cost-of-production. The goal of this course is to identify important numbers and where to find them in order to make powerful decisions for your business.  Register Here for Maple Financial Planning. Course Dates: 7:00 – 8:30 EST pm EST on Thursdays: 10/28, 11/4, 11/11 and 11/18.

Sap Yields: Why CODIT and Non-Conductive Wood Matter

CODIT stands for Compartmentalization of Decay in Trees, and sugar maples are darn good at CODIT!  Mark Isselhardt, during the 2021 virtual Ohio Society of American Foresters spring meeting, gave an excellent microscopic and physiological explanation of how maple trees wall off and seal up old tapholes.

Why does understanding compartmentalization matter to a maple producer?  Compartmentalization creates the all-important non-conductive wood that sugarmakers try to avoid with each year’s new taphole.  And just in case you were wondering – how much does it matter?  Through work conducted at University of Vermont’s Proctor Maple Research Center, Mark Isselhardt document sap yield declines of 70-75% when a taphole intersects non-conductive wood.

From Tree to Table Maple Webinar

Please enjoy this 1-hour presentation led by Kathy Smith, Les Ober, and Gabe Karns.  This opportunity was made available through the Woodland Stewards Friday in the Woods webinar series.  Nearly 150 attendees listened to a wide coverage of beginner maple topics followed by a full hour of Q & A that ranged from more technical aspects of boiling and filtering and processing syrup to more inquisitive investigations of why the freeze-thaw cycle is necessary for making sap flow and if tapped wood has any market potential as lumber.

Ohio Maple Days 2021 Presentations AVAILABLE

Despite being virtual due to COVID-19, 2021 Ohio Maple Days – or more accurately Ohio Maple Day sans the “s” – was a success.  The audience, two hundred or so strong, heard presentations on tapping and updates from our ACER grants in addition to how production might be increased with red maple.  A big thanks to this year’s speakers and an extra round of applause for the committee who worked hard on an event that looked quite a bit different than in years past.  One silver lining to having a virtual event is that the sessions are easily recorded.

Visit the Ohio Woodland Stewards Maple page and scroll to the bottom of that webpage to access the different presentations.  Let us know what you think and send us any questions, comments, concerns, or suggestions to talk topics for next year!

From Tree to Table: Webinar for the Maple Curious

Join OSU’s Les Ober, Geauga Co. Extension, and SENR’s Gabe Karns and Kathy Smith, for this session on how to make your own syrup or explore turning your woods into a sugarbush as an income opportunity. We will talk some history, tree species to tap, how to tap and how to boil and bottle maple sap. Have a few trees in the yard or a woods that has potential? We will try to answer all your questions.

The FREE webinar will be March 12 from 10 AM-noon.  Registration link here!

Also don’t forget this weekend is the first of 2 for the Ohio Maple Madness Spring Driving TourClick here for more information.