Camellia sinensis – The Tea Plant
The tea plant is Camellia sinensis and it is grown commercially in Australia with a number of cultivars being used including the well known ‘Yabukita’, and ‘Sayamakaori’. Traditionally the new leaves would be picked by hand, however commercial production means mechanical harvesting.
If left Camellia sinensis will grow to a large shrub, 4+ m in height. In commercial production plants are kept low at less than 1m for ease of harvesting. Plants are available from many specialist camellia nurseries in Australia.
Growing the Tea Plant in the Home Garden
In the home garden enthusiasts can grow their own tea plant. They require the same conditions as other species, a deep humus rich soil, moist and a reasonably cool climate. It is the small new leaves that are picked to dry and make tea.
The leaves need to be picked when young to produce the highest quality tea.
Tea plants are best grown in a frost free position so that the new, delicate young leaves are not damaged by frosts.
In most home gardens the best position in in dappled shade, this provides some protection from frosts as well as protection from the hot sun, which can burn the new leaves.
The difference between Green and Black Tea ?
Camellia sinensis is used for making both green and black tea. Green tea is made by steaming, rolling and drying. Black tea by fermenting and then drying.
Camellia sinensis can also be used a flowering hedge, it takes well to pruning and has attractive white flowers in the spring.
Available for sale from the following Nurseries
412 James Lane, Fern Hill VIC. 3458 - Phone 0419002651
Large range of Rare plants, Climbers, Bulbs, Perennials Fruit Trees, Ornamental Trees and Shrubs. Available both Retail and by Mail Order
'Justly famous for rare and unusual plants' Don Teese
34 Mt Pleasant Rd Monbulk VIC 3793