Tea - plant profile
The plantTea is an evergreen shrub which can grow up to 17 m high. It is usually kept below 2 m high by pruning.
|Image: Tea plant at harvest time.|
Leaves - Its bright green leaves are shiny, often with a hairy underside.
Flowers - The flowers are scented and can occur singly or in clusters of 2 to 4.
Fruits - Its fruits are brownish-green containing 1 to 4 spherical or flattened seeds.
Camellia sinensis var. sinensis is hardier than Assam tea, and has relatively narrow and smaller leaves. Its leaves are used to produce green tea and China black tea.
Camellia sinensis var. assamica is much bigger in its natural state and can grow into a loosely branched tree to a height of about 17 m. It's a less hardy variety with larger, rather droopy, leathery leaves which are used to make Assam (Indian) black tea.