Birch sap contains sugar, as well as small amounts of acid, nitrogenous substances, salts (ash). The sugar content in birch sap may vary depending on various conditions. From the time of collecting birch sap, weather, soil conditions, age of trees, etc..
Chemical composition and nutritional value of birch sap, sap flow, application of birch sap.
It has been established that glucose and fructose are found in birch sap, and sucrose is not found in ordinary sugar obtained from beets. The composition of ash includes mainly calcium, potassium, magnesium salts. Birch sap has a known value when used in food, mainly due to the sugar it contains. The salts present in it may also have some significance..
other products are obtained that have or are attributed to the therapeutic effect.
Birch buds are used in medicine as a medicine. Birch tar has antiseptic (antiseptic) properties. Birch leaves contain significant amounts of vitamin C and are used to produce its preparations..
Beginning of sap flow and time for collecting birch sap.
In spring, birch buds begin to bloom, from which leaves develop. Leaf development occurs due to the reserve nutrients that were accumulated and deposited in the roots of plants in the previous fall. In this case, the organic (nutrient) substances of this stock are subjected to the so-called hydrolysis (splitting) with the formation of water-soluble products that pass into the solution (wood sap) and rise along the bark from the roots to the branches.
During hydrolysis, starch passes into sugar, which determines the sweet taste of birch sap. Sap flow begins long before leaf formation. If during this period a tree is wounded, a knot is broken, an incision is made or a hole in the bark of the trunk, then the juice of the tree will flow out of this hole. This movement of sap is also known as spring crying of trees..
The juice is most abundantly separated from birch and maple, in a small amount from beech, hazel and some others. Observations found that the average time to start the movement of birch sap can be considered the first decade of April. The usual collection of juice ends with the formation of leaf buds. Although the allocation of juice at this time is still ongoing, but its composition is changing. Juice becomes cloudy, its sweet taste disappears. Birch buds bloom on average on April 30.
Each tree can produce an average of 2 to 7 liters of birch sap per day. The amount of juice released depends on many conditions. Basically, all factors affecting the amount of juice secreted can be divided into the following four groups.
1. Meteorological conditions. Temperature, humidity and air pressure, wind direction and strength, earth temperature, sunlight, precipitation, etc..
2. Topographic conditions. Terrain and exposure, slope to the south, height above sea level, the presence of subsurface water.
3. Biological conditions. The thickness (diameter) of the tree, the power of the root system and the crown, the density of afforestation, the presence of undergrowth, etc..
4. Technical factors. The diameter and depth of the holes, their number and location, the time of the beginning of the collection of birch sap.
The use of birch sap.
Birch sap is a very unstable product. Op quickly begins to wander, becomes cloudy, becomes covered with a pinkish film and acquires an acid reaction, so it is necessary to use it quickly. Birch sap can find mainly the following application..
1. As a pleasant drink (instead of fruit and berry water), in a pure, natural form or with the addition of flavoring substances (acids, aromatic substances, etc.).
2. As a sugar-containing raw material.
From birch sap, by evaporation or thickening, it is possible to obtain syrups with a higher or lower sugar content. You can also get kvass, mash, beer and wine. Effervescent wine such as champagne from birch sap in ancient times was called birch champagne.