Cleaning Up

By Richard DeVries Last week I pulled all the taps and started cleaning up. I still have a lot of things to clean up and put away till next season. We ended up with 70 gallons of pure Maple syrup. I did not have time to bottle any of this years syrup yet but it…

Spring is Certain

By Greg Lecker If Easter Sunday’s 70 degree weather demonstrated anything, it is that spring has arrived in the Twin Cities. Even if last week’s and the coming week’s rain and chill lend doubt, today’s photos provide reassurance. Even before one reaches the front gatehouse, Siberian Squill and Daffodils delight the visitor. A wild turkey…

Spring Symphony

By Mary Beth Pottratz Today is a summery treat of a day – an unusually high temperature in the mid 70’s and a robin’s egg blue sky with just enough wispy clouds to soften the shadows. The very first few daffodils and some tiny blue flowers have popped up along Alkire Drive. The tulips are…

Season Extended

By Richard DeVries The return of the colder weather is a sensitive subject. Therefore I won’t tell you that I am rather excited about it. The Maple syrup season can end in two ways and they both involve warm weather. When it warms up the trees want to leaf out. When the buds are as…

To everything there is a season…

By Boak Wiesner “Why do Snowdrops blossom first?” I was asked upon entering the Arb on the most recent warm day. The only answer, really, is that those that didn’t blossom now didn’t survive, that is, evolution has caused some plants to bloom early in the yearly cycle of things, and other plants to bloom…

And Then There Was Sap

And then the great sap run of 2014 started. For us it was last Wednesday and I hear other sugar bushes around the metro had similar experiences. We had a little bit of sap coming in the past weeks but nothing like last weekend. The weather finally triggered the trees to start pumping and spilling…

Making Tracks to Spring

By Greg Lecker Though Friday’s snowfall might suggest otherwise, spring is coming! Walking from the parking lot to Three Mile Drive, I dodge Canada Geese that find grass newly exposed – again. Entering the Maple Sugarbush, I spy a full bag of Maple sap. The trees at the edge of the woodland are warming more…

First Syrup

By Richard DeVries Wednesday was a good day. The sap was running nicely on the south side of the hill. The sun had warmed up the trees enough by mid morning for the sap to start dripping. We had a nice trickle of sap running into the storage tank from the trees connected to the…

Firsts

By Mary Beth Pottratz The first bluebirds of the season greet me with their sweetly chortled songs. An unusually warm 63⁰ has brought birds, animals, and a brown-winged fly – first of the season as well – back to life. Trees are in bud all over the arboretum: river birch sports new red twigs tipped…