Camellia sinensis ‘Small Leaf’ Tea

Description

Develop into excellent landscape shrubs with a compact and container friendly, branching habit.  Medium-green leaves with irregular serrations remain less than 4″ x 2.5″ at maturity.  This cold-hardy variety is widely grown in Japan and favored for producing mild-flavored tea. These are descendants of a tea plant found on the University of North Carolina campus. Some of these plants survived temps up to -9F in the winter of 1985. Camellia  sinensis likes lots of water but will not grow where water will stand. The second year the plants are established and starting to grow vigorously, it’s time to prune them off short again. This is what needs to be done to start the plant branching out. The plant would otherwise shoot up tall and straight into a twenty foot shrub, but for tea production the bush needs to look more like an azalea bush. Plants produce more robust teas when grown in full sun but young plants planted in direct sun will not survive. It’s best to protect the plants from direct sun the first full year. See here for a fuller description. Hardy to Zones 7a-9. Photo courtesy of Camellia Forest Nursery.
 
Tea-Small-Leaf

Develop into excellent landscape shrubs with a compact and container friendly, branching habit.  Medium-green leaves with irregular serrations remain less than 4″ x 2.5″ at maturity.  This cold-hardy variety is widely grown in Japan and favored for producing mild-flavored tea. These are descendants of a tea plant found on the University of North Carolina campus. Some of these plants survived temps up to -9F in the winter of 1985. Camellia  sinensis likes lots of water but will not grow where water will stand. The second year the plants are established and starting to grow vigorously, it’s time to prune them off short again. This is what needs to be done to start the plant branching out. The plant would otherwise shoot up tall and straight into a twenty foot shrub, but for tea production the bush needs to look more like an azalea bush. Plants produce more robust teas when grown in full sun but young plants planted in direct sun will not survive. It’s best to protect the plants from direct sun the first full year. See here for a fuller description. Hardy to Zones 7a-9. Photo courtesy of Camellia Forest Nursery.
 
Tea-Small-Leaf