the 6 tea varieties
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the tea growing regions
By now, more than 40 countries in the world are producing tea and this number will probably keep growing. Green teas like black teas are produced in Asia, Africa, America and even in Europe ( the Azores and Turkey are tea producers).
The elevation for tea to grow is between 600 and 2800 meters above sea level. The best tea leaves are known to be harvested between 800 and 2500 meters.
Tea is growing in South and Middle-China in the provinces of : Anhui, Fujian, Guangdong, Guangzi Zhuang, Guizhou, Hainan dao, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Shaanxi, Sichuan, Yunnan. The finest tea varieties grow there above 1000 metres of elevation. Green tea accounts for the most part of the chinese production. The production of black tea is mostly exported. The black tea from China has usually a mild taste combined to an intensive aroma.
Yunnan Province: Pu-erh teas like the Moonlight Pu-erh teacake, the 88 Raw Pu-erh loose leaves or the Silver-Tip 200g teacake
Zhejiang Province: Long jing a.k.a. Dragonwell. One rare and exceptional Long jing is our Min Qiang Dragonwell.
Fujian Province: This province produces many different teas, white, green, Oolong and black. Here are a few examples among the most famous and sought after teas from Fujian: Jasmin Pearls, the Bai Hao Yin Zhen a.k.a. Silver Needles, the Tiequanyin a.k.a. Iron Buddha, the Da Hong Pao.
Taiwan is famous for its half fermented teas Oolong. The production started there in 1870 and Taiwanese producers have acquired an incredible expertise in the production of these exquisite teas. Some black and green teas are found too. Here are a few examples of outstanding taiwanese Oolong teas: Bao Zhong, Dong Ding, Lei Shan
In Japan, like in China, tea is drunk throughout the day. Japan only produces green tea. The Oolong and black teas are usually imported. Teas from outstanding quality are grown and produced in the region of Uji, world famous among tea lovers. These are teas like our Shuppin Sencha, our gyokuro or our two Matcha teas, the Matcha Uji no kaori and the Matcha Kyoto Mukashi. A large growing region, Shizuoka, lies near the mount Fuji between Kyoto and Tokyo, where larger tea plantations have developed but many producing very good teas too.
A japanese legend:
The monk and Zen master Eisai brought seed of a tea plant from China to Japan in the thirteenth century. His disciple planted the seeds in the Uji region. The history tells us now how successful was this venture.
One third of the worldwide tea production comes from India. The most famous tea growing areas are Assam and Darjeeling. Tea is produced as well in the regions of Sikkim, Dooars and Nilgiri. India produces mainly black tea.
Sri Lanka (Ceylon):
Ceylan has been producing black tea for one hundred years after having been the second biggest coffee beans producer worldwide.
Indonesia produces tea since 1835. The early attempts were not very successful. The black teas produced nowadays are generally used for blended teas.
Reknowned in South-Africa with Roibush, Africa produces as well black tea since the beginning of the twentieth century. Tea plantations are found in : Kenya, Burundi, Cameroon, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. The teas are generally CTC teas ( crush, tear, curl) used for tea bags or soda drinks.
There are many other countries producing tea:
And there will be probably more in the future with the climate change. Tea grows as well in : Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Iran, Russia, Portugal and Turkey.