CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center will host "Maple Sugaring" Saturday, Feb. 13, from 1-4 p.m. This program is all about the history, equipment and process of making maple syrup and sugar.
"This event is self-guided and partially outdoors so that we can show the entire process of backyard sugaring," said Angela Pierce, a naturalist at the Nature Center. Pierce said maple sugaring has a long history in America, with earliest records of Indians using syrup for barter in the 1600s.
Though some think sugar maple trees are only found in Northeastern and North central regions of the country, the trees are also found in Missouri and have a rich history of use for maple sugaring.
Pierce said maple sugaring is a great way for people to discover nature in the cooler months. However, there are techniques that should be used to ensure the health of trees when they are tapped for sap.
"This event will teach the appropriate conservation practices for successful backyard sugaring," said Pierce.
The maple sugaring program is just one way the MDC helps people discover nature. All groups and ages are welcome and no registration is needed. For more information on this and other events at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center, call 573-290-5218 or go online to mdc.mo.gov/capenaturecenter.