How is Tea Grown?
Tea is a popular drink that has been enjoyed for centuries. It’s a crop that is grown in many countries around the world, but the process of growing it does vary slightly from one place to another. The following is an overview of how tea is usually grown.
Climate and Location
Tea is best grown in warm climates with ample rainfall, but can also be cultivated in cooler areas as well. Tea plants need a lot of sunshine, but too much heat and direct sunlight can dry out the plant leaves. Tea is usually grown in areas located near mountains, as the foothills provide protection from strong winds and more direct sunlight.
Planting and Cultivation
Tea plants are usually started from cuttings or seeds and planted in pre-prepared fields. The soil is heavily fertilized to provide the tea plants with the nutrients they need to thrive. Once planted, the tea plants are trimmed and pruned regularly to maintain their shape and keep them healthy.
Tea is harvested throughout the year, with the leaves being plucked every 2-3 weeks. Each plant will only yield a few ounces of tea leaves per season, so the harvesting process has to be done carefully to ensure the plant isn’t damaged. The tea leaves are then dried, sorted, and processed according to the type of tea being produced.
Types of Tea
The type of tea produced depends on the species of tea plant and the production methods used. Common varieties of tea include:
- Black Tea: The most popular type of tea, black tea is oxidized, usually fuller-bodied and more astringent than other types.
- Green Tea: Green tea is not oxidized, giving it a lighter body and more delicate flavor.
- Oolong Tea: Oolong tea is semi-oxidized tea, with a flavor that is somewhere between green and black tea.
- White Tea: White tea is not oxidized and is minimally processed, resulting in a mild flavor.
- Pu-Erh Tea: Pu-erh tea is an aged tea that is oxidized, fermented, and aged for years, resulting in a rich, earthy flavor.
Growing tea is a complex process that requires knowledge, care, and dedication. The end result is a product that has been enjoyed by generations, and will continue to be enjoyed for years to come.