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Talking to trees, the cool April air, and frogs: Michelle Defoe and her three daughters share the ancient Ojibwe tradition of tapping maple trees for syrup.

Michelle Defoe, a member of the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe, says you have to respect the trees for the medicine they provide: speak to them, offer them food, and leave them alone to recover once warmer weather wakes up the frogs. Last month, Defoe and her three daughters tapped a sugarbush–a grouping of sugar maple trees–near Duluth.