Tapping walnut trees

Tapping walnut trees


So these are black walnut trees. Everything looks the same as a maple
sugar bush, the only difference is that we’re tapping walnut trees instead a
maple. With all the trees here, we just for one
tap per tree on most of them. On the largest trees, the
ones that were above 18 inches in diameter we put two taps on the trees. We do
that in order to follow conservative tapping
guidelines and you don’t wanna tap too much because every hole you drill in the tree
reduces the amount of sap that you can get out of that tree in the future. It creates a stain column of wood that’s no longer conducive to sap flow. So
we only use one small spout on most trees. If the trees are very big and healthy, at
least 18 inches in diameter with a nice crown then we’ll do two taps, especially when we have the high vacuum
system like this. So we have here this is our main line. It’s
three quarters-inch in diameter. First we strung a high
tensile wire twelve and a half gauge high tensile wire at an even pitch, a 3 percent grade along the slope of this little hill
here and then we brought the tubing
underneath it. We tied it up with these wire ties about every
12-18 inches… get it nice and tight so we had our main
line of setup, and then we ran, which is called the
lateral line we ran this tubing out to the trees and
we did maybe 2 to 3 on the small lines and
five to six on some of the longer lines they have
more trees. When we’re running these lines out to the
trees we just want to keep it as simple and
direct is possible. We want to minimize the use of tubing and we want to
have as few on the tree as possible depending on what makes
sense for where the trees are in relation to
the tubing. We try to keep it all sloping down hill,
just a little bit 3 percent grade is what we we strive for
at a minimum and once they’re connected into the line we put a
little hook manifold on here. This keeps the
tension on the line and takes it off of our fitting here. So keeps everything nice
and tight and then the sap flows right
into which is called the manifold where
we have drilled the hole in our tubing clamped on this manifold and put the
tubing right onto it, so all the sap could flow out of the tree, down what’s called the drop line. So there’s a
spout in the tree, flows down the drop line, comes into a T-
fitting, down the line, into the manifold, down the main line to our tank.

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