In winter, tree sap acts as a biological “antifreeze” because sugar sap cannot freeze like water would. Sap does not go to the roots in winter. In fact, with some species we observed a 1% increase in MC in above-ground wood during winter. The difference between summer and winter is sap flow.
During cold weather, when temperatures drop below freezing, the tree draws water through the roots, replenishing the sap of the tree. This cycle continues until the weather stabilizes and is quite normal. With the change of seasons from winter to spring, which produces a cycle of warm days and frosty nights, maple sap begins to rise up the stem of trees. In trees that have been taken out for collection, sap flows from tree taps into buckets (pictured on the right) or plastic tubes. The importance of sap cannot be understated — trees need it all year round! That’s why you should always contact a professional for any maintenance work that needs to be done on your trees. Calling Tree Lopping Townsville will give you peace of mind knowing that all maintenance tasks like pruning and fertilizing will be conducted with special care considering the vital role sap plays in keeping your trees alive throughout winter.
Maple syrup producers collect the sap and boil it to concentrate it into maple syrup and sugar. Sap flow ends when night temperatures no longer fall below freezing point. Typical sugaring seasons last up to eight weeks, usually from late January to early April. Another important function of sap is to help the tree regulate its temperature.
In winter, the sap helps keep the tree warm and, in summer, it helps to keep it cool. Therefore, sap is essential for the tree to survive in both hot and cold climates. The sap is collected and then boiled to concentrate the sugars. However, it takes a lot of sap to make candy because sap only contains 2.5% sugar.
Sap production begins in the warm summer months, when the process of photosynthesis creates carbohydrates that are stored in the tree as starch. Then the starch is converted into sugar in the form of sucrose, which dissolves in the sap, which is stored for the winter. The amount of sugar (sucrose) in spring sap depends on many factors, including the genetics of the tree, leaf mass, site conditions, the amount of sunshine during the previous growing season, and the overall health of the tree. Sap flow will continue as long as the pressure inside the tree is greater than the atmospheric pressure outside the tree.
In early spring, although many trees are still dormant, fluctuating temperatures may affect sap flow from trees. Rising temperatures during the day creates a positive pressure inside the tree that will push sap out of any hole in the tree. If someone cuts a frozen maple tree in winter, the sap comes from the cut, from the top of the tree down, not from the stump up. As the maple begins to freeze, the sap is absorbed by the tree through the large pores of the wood that connect to the roots of the tree.
Prune trees at the right time of year where you can, and if your work is inevitable, let the tree heal naturally. It also helps the tree heal wounds, provides protection against diseases and parasites, and helps the tree store energy. After long periods of cold, recharge the tree with sap, the tree will produce this sap when the weather becomes warm enough to thaw the frost of the cells. When temperatures drop below freezing, trees draw water through their roots and replenish tree sap.
In addition to taps purposely placed on the tree to collect sap, sap will come out of broken branches or any other cracks or holes in the tree. In this case, the positive pressure inside the maple tree is the result of the pressure of heating, the gases released, the osmotic pressure caused by sugar and other substances in the sap, as well as the gravity in the highest sap of the tree. When frozen twigs and branches are thawed, assuming that the rest of the tree is thawed, if a hole is drilled in the trunk and a tube (a “spile”) is placed on it, then the liquid “falls down the tree and pours through the spile. . Taking care of your trees through the cold months is certainly a priority for keeping them healthy for many years. If you live in Townsville or the surrounding area consider getting advice from Tree Lopping Townsville – they are experts in the field who can help you make sure your trees flourish in any season.
Townsville Tree Lopping Services
30 Sunderland St
Garbutt QLD 4814
(07) 4243 4100