INSIGHT INTO TEA


The Tea Tree Camellia Sinensis, a relative of the flowering Camellia plant, originating from China and found later in northeastern region of India, near the Chinese border around Assam. A hardy tree, it grows well in the lowlands and also on the highlands. Partial to slightly acidic soil and hilly terrain for drainage, tropical to cool subtropical climate, sunny with abundant rainfall, it can survive for well over a hundred years, depending on its maintenance. Cultivated in nurseries from seeds of its delicate white flower or cutting from selected trees. After about 3 years, the trees destined for the production of tea are transplanted in neat rows in the fields. Carefully pegged and pruned to form table top bushes maintained at a height of about 3 feet which facilitates harvesting of the young flushes, shoots consisting of bud and two leaves. A hardy plant it requires little or no fertilizing and pest control, though gives in sometimes to cold blights in the very wet season. In the Cameron Valley tea gardens we boast of original Chinese and selected Assam tea bushes to ensure the quality is maintained.

TYPE OF TEA


Tea is largely classified into two categories: highlands tea and lowlands tea. While lowlands tea are characteristically bolder and stronger, with body and color, highlands tea is recognized as the aromatic, flavorful tea of superior quality. Cameron Valley Teas grown only at an altitude of about 5000 feet above sea level naturally falls into the category of being a premium quality highlands black tea.

HARVESTING TEA


Young shoots or ‘flush‘ consisting of two leaves and a bud is what’s sought after for production of quality tea. Harvesting is rotated around every 15 days to allow the fresh growth of shoots. Traditionally plucked by hand, which proves costly and time consuming, it is now replaced by hand shears or hand drawn machines in our plantation. A plucker can harvest as much as 100-200kgs of young leaves at a go depending on the method applied.