My lightbulb moment that there were bigger trees to tap and drink than my loyal birches came moments too late for me to taste the sap of my new loves this year. Their sap had flowed, their buds were filled out. But now I know there’s a whole new array of trees to drink from I’m quite happy to wait until next time, and next time I’ll be seeking out these trees:
Lime Tree sap (Linden Tree) – with its tropical & honeyed flavoured flowers & leaves, seeds that turn into chocolate flavoured pods, Linden is at the top of my list for next years tapping.
Alder sap – astringent & tannin rich; people have turned their noses up at its dark sap because it is bitter…That makes it all the more alluring..
Walnut sap – Dina Falconi, author of Foraging & Feasting: A Field Guide and Wild Food Cookbook, claims walnut sap syrup is “It’s slightly astringent and bitter, so it’s not a mainstream flavor,” it sounds like a great flavour to me.
Hickory sap – not native to the UK, but if you can find it it yields a sap people rave about. If you can’t wait until next spring for the annual rise, you can make a syrup with the bark of hickory which is full of vanilla, smoky flavours.
The Agroforestry Trust is a great source of further information about trees you can tap for sap & sells seeds of trees such as hickory if you’d like an even longer wait for your sap collection..