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Camellia sinensis

Camellia sinensis
Csinensis.jpg
Tea Bud.jpg
Camellia sinensis foliage
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Ericales
Family: Theaceae
Genus: Camellia
Species: C. sinensis
Binomial name
Camellia sinensis
(L.) Kuntze
Synonyms
  • C. angustifolia Hung T. Chang
  • C. arborescens Hung T. Chang & F. L. Yu
  • C. assamica (J. W. Masters) Hung T. Chang
  • C. dehungensis Hung T. Chang & B. H. Chen
  • C. dishiensis F. C. Zhang et al.
  • C. longlingensis F. C. Zhang et al.
  • C. multisepala Hung T. Chang & Y. J. Tang
  • C. oleosa (Loureiro) Rehder
  • C. parvisepala Hung T. Chang.
  • C. parvisepaloides Hung T. Chang & H. S. Wang.
  • C. polyneura Hung T. Chang &
  • C. thea Link
  • C. theifera Griffith
  • C. waldeniae S. Y. Hu
  • Thea assamica J. W. Masters
  • Thea bohea L.
  • Thea cantonensis Loureiro
  • Thea chinensis Sims
  • Thea cochinchinensis Loureiro
  • Thea grandifolia Salisbury
  • Thea olearia Loureiro ex Gomes
  • Thea oleosa Loureiro
  • Thea parvifolia Salisbury (1796), not Hayata (1913)
  • Thea sinensis L.
  • Thea viridis L.
  • Theaphylla cantonensis (Loureiro) Rafinesque

Camellia sinensis is a species of evergreen shrub or small tree whose leaves and leaf buds are used to produce tea. It is of the genus Camellia (Chinese: 茶花; pinyin: Cháhuā, literally: "tea flower") of flowering plants in the family Theaceae. Common names include "tea plant", "tea shrub", and "tea tree" (not to be confused with Melaleuca alternifolia, the source of tea tree oil, or Leptospermum scoparium, the New Zealand teatree).

Two major varieties are grown: Camellia sinensis var. sinensis for Chinese teas, and Camellia sinensis var. assamica for Indian Assam teas.White tea, yellow tea, green tea, oolong, pu-erh tea and black tea are all harvested from one or the other, but are processed differently to attain varying levels of oxidation. Kukicha (twig tea) is also harvested from Camellia sinensis, but uses twigs and stems rather than leaves.

The name Camellia is taken from the Latinized name of Rev. Georg Kamel,SJ (1661–1706), a Moravian-born Jesuit lay brother, pharmacist, and missionary to the Philippines.



  • C. angustifolia Hung T. Chang
  • C. arborescens Hung T. Chang & F. L. Yu
  • C. assamica (J. W. Masters) Hung T. Chang
  • C. dehungensis Hung T. Chang & B. H. Chen
  • C. dishiensis F. C. Zhang et al.
  • C. longlingensis F. C. Zhang et al.
  • C. multisepala Hung T. Chang & Y. J. Tang
  • C. oleosa (Loureiro) Rehder
  • C. parvisepala Hung T. Chang.
  • C. parvisepaloides Hung T. Chang & H. S. Wang.
  • C. polyneura Hung T. Chang &
  • C. thea Link
  • C. theifera Griffith
  • C. waldeniae S. Y. Hu
  • Thea assamica J. W. Masters
  • Thea bohea L.
  • Thea cantonensis Loureiro
  • Thea chinensis Sims
  • Thea cochinchinensis Loureiro
  • Thea grandifolia Salisbury
  • Thea olearia Loureiro ex Gomes
  • Thea oleosa Loureiro
  • Thea parvifolia Salisbury (1796), not Hayata (1913)
  • Thea sinensis L.
  • Thea viridis L.
  • Theaphylla cantonensis (Loureiro) Rafinesque
  • Benifuuki
  • Fushun
  • Kanayamidori
  • Meiryoku
  • Saemidori
  • Okumidori
  • Yabukita
  • Assam comes from the northeastern section of the country. This heavily forested region is home to much wildlife, including the rhinoceros. Tea from here is rich and full-bodied. It was in Assam that the first tea estate was established, in 1837.
  • Darjeeling, from the cool and wet Darjeeling region, tucked in the foothills of the Himalayas. Tea plantations reach 2,200 metres. The tea is delicately flavoured, and considered to be one of the finest teas in the world. The Darjeeling plantations have 3 distinct harvests, termed 'flushes', and the tea produced from each flush has a unique flavour. First (spring) flush teas are light and aromatic, while the second (summer) flush produces tea with a bit more bite. The third, or autumn flush gives a tea that is lesser in quality.
  • Nilgiri, from a southern region of India almost as high as Darjeeling. Grown at elevations between 1,000 and 2,500 metres, Nilgiri teas are subtle and rather gentle, and are frequently blended with other, more robust teas.
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Wikipedia

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