Abstract Detail

Crops and Wild Relatives

Ellman, Mark [1], Ellman, Michael [1].

Sugar concentration in the tree sap of five species of Minnesota trees.

Tree sap can be collected from a variety of species in Minnesota, including sugar maple (Acer saccharum), box elder (Acer negundo), red maple (Acer rubrum), paper birch (Betula papyrifera), and ironwood (Ostrya virginiana). The sap of different species contain varying concentrations of sugar, important for determining the amount of sap needed to boil down into a volume of syrup.  In general, previous literature has shown that sugar maples have the highest concentration of sugar, followed by red maple, birch, and box elder. The sugar concentration of ironwood is as of yet unknown. The purpose of this study was to confirm the concentration of sugar in the sap of these five tree species and record the variation in sugar concentration over the tapping season (generally from early March to late April). In the Saint John’s Arboretum in Collegeville, Minnesota, two trees of each species were tapped with 5/16 spiles starting on March 21 using standard procedures and the sap collected daily.  The volume was measured and the sugar concentration measured using a digital refractometer. Initial results for testing between March 22, 2018 and March 29, 2018 indicated that box elder trees had the highest overall average sugar percentage, at 2.59%. Red maple had the next highest sugar concentration, at 2.2%. Sugar maple had the lowest percentage, at 1.72%. Ironwood and paper birch trees had no sap flow over the collection period, giving no results for percentages. Box elder trees had the highest volume, followed by sugar maple. Red maple had the lowest volume of sap flow.

1 - 2303 Telemark Lane NW, Rochester, MN, 55901, United States

Temperate trees
maple syrup
tree sap
sugar concentration
box elder
sugar maple
red maple
paper birch.

Presentation Type: Poster
Number: PCW009
Abstract ID:761
Candidate for Awards:None

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