No sap to tap for maple syrup

By Jillian Marshall

March 24, 2014 Updated Mar 24, 2014 at 12:36 AM EDT

Harpursville, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Spring has finally sprung, but temperatures have been cooler than most hope, especially maple farmers. Your breakfast may be missing something sweet if the weather doesn't warm up soon.

At Bush's Syrup House in Harpursville, the cold temperatures have cut into the majority of the maple syrup season.

The family-owned business has more than 10,000 maple trees tapped, but only made less than a quarter of their normal crop.

"Usually by this time of the year, it's 3/4 of a way done. We just started boiling yesterday," said owner Brian Bush.

Bush said in a normal season, a bucket on a maple tree would be filled to the top with sap in just one day. But with the colder temperatures over the weekend, there was only ice.

Ideal temperatures are below freezing at night and in the low 40s and sunny during the day. But Bush doesn't want a huge jump in temperatures, or maple season will end.

"The warm weather brings the buds out. Once the buds come out, it's taking the sap up for the leaves and making the tree grow," Bush said.

Though they may be low on crop, and closing in on the end of maple syrup season, it didn't stop Bush from welcoming hundreds to his farm for Maple Weekend. He gave a behind the scenes look at how syrup is made.

Bush said on a good year, they will produce about 1,500 gallons of the golden good stuff. Right now, he is 75 percent of the way through the season and only has 100 gallons to his name.

Bush said the maple syrup season ends in the beginning of April, but he is hoping the weather will warm up slowly to extend the season.