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Camellia sinensis – Tips and Tricks

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    Ok so I’m keen….. Gonna find me 2 or 3 plants and grow them,,,,

    Who has them, and is there any secrets to them 🙂


    Hi baldcat Im reading this out of my herb book .

    The fresh young leaves are pan fried,then rolled or dried to make green tea.

    The fresh leaves are wilted in sunlight,bruised slightly,then partly fermented for oolong tea.

    Black tea is fully fermented.

    The book I got it from”The complete Medicinal Herbal, Penelope Ody


    dan, there’s a growing tea thread here somewhere. It was active last week.


    Hey Dan,

    I bought a small seedling in autumn from Diggers. They said to treat it like the other camelias – if camelias do well in your area, so will the tea. That said, camelias do very well in the hills, but the poor old tea seedling hasn’t done much over winter and its leaves look a bit brown. Am hoping the warmer weather perks it up.




    billy, your camellia should get a nice growth spurt when it warms up. We ready with some liquid fertilizer. apply it when you see new growth.


    My grandmother bought me 2 plants from Cairns (Limberlost Nursery) i only planted them 3 days ago and they r still alive :clap:, so i’m new 2 growing them and not much help but on the tag is:

    Camellia sinensis – Med sized spreading shrub, profusion of small, single white 2 cream flowers. Ideal for screens, hedges and containers. All of worlds tea comes from this species from Southern China.

    Sunny or partly shaded position. Protect from strong winds.

    Well drained, slightly acidic soil. B4 planting combine soil with organic matter.

    Keep moist especially in hot, dry weather. Do not allow mulch 2 touch the trunk. In spring fertilise and mayb lightly trimmed. Avoid lime.


    Ok got myself a camilla sinensis, wasn’t in good shape but after getting it from Wodonga, I brought it over to my wimmera black soil and gave it a drink…. Man has it taken off,,, it just must really love the soil here..

    Ok so now how do I prep the leaves for drinking ??? I like green tea, and Sam is a black tea… Do I need to dry the leaves before trying to infude them ?


    There’s the beginning of the explanation in a thread called “Tea anyone?” in the herbs, bush house and green house food plants section.

    I think it’s mostly various sorts of fermentation which differentiate green & black teas, but I’m waiting till my tea plant gets bigger before I try taking leaves …

    BTW, do you need to prune tea plants when they’re young to make them bushy????


    I think I’m gunna let mine grow until it is at least 4 -5 foot then I will trim and maintain that height.


    You treat them like a hedge and prune often and pick the new growth don’t you?


    well it died ….. not sure how or why, but it maybe have been the cold…

    On the look out for more. to give it another crack.


    baldcat, we have two bushes and they looked a bit sad for some time but have now come on really well. I believe they do not like the cold and need to be protected from Frosts. Tea does grow in the Yunnan Region in Nepal and other high country cold areas and yet it seems to be frost sensitive (or at least the type we are getting in Australia). Anyway, we got ours through last winter and will protect it well through this one and hopefully all will be well. It does like acid soil though.


    I got mine from diggers (x2) and it died. Might try again though. I thought they would like the cold, being high country plants naturally so I put it on the south side. But we’re pretty tropical here so it wasn’t very cold and got lots of sun. You have given me hope to try again.


    Just bumping this thread as I have just tried the whole tea growing thing. Bought seeds which didn’t germinate, then seedlings. I planted out two which have promptly singed in the sun and dropped almost all their leaves. 🙁 Luckily I didn’t plant all of them out so I haven’t lost them all (yet)! I’ve kept the rest well watered in the shade and they don’t seem to be dying, in fact some of them have new growth.

    I was planning to use them as a hedge but it’s looking like they won’t deal with full sun. Has anyone else grown them in Brisbane or surrounds with any success? The growing info says part shade to full sun but I’m wondering if they won’t actually tolerate full sun here. :shrug:

    Also, thanks for the tips of growing them like regular camelias but the problem is I’ve never grown camelias. What do they like? From reading it seems acidic soil (what sort of pH range?), well drained and sandy. Anything else I should know?

    Thanks for your help everyone. Hope to hear of some success stories.



    I bought two from Diggers several years ago…they were so sick looking after they reached my place (WA) and they died several weeks later. I complained to Diggers and the sent another two out…same result. I gave up and waited another year before feeling optomistic and trying again. They are still alive, and have definitely grown, but far from what I would say is a thriving plant for well over a years growth…hoping they do something special this summer. I am keen for my first cup of tea, but may have to wait a little longer!

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