How to grow tea tree from cuttings


Growing Tea: Finding Zen in the Garden

Table of Contents

Nothing’s more relaxing than a cup of steaming tea, right? But what if you could also unwind by growing the tea yourself? Growing tea is simpler than it seems and will fill your home with a calming, and delicious, vibe.

Tea is frequently touted for its many health benefits, including antioxidants and stress relief. It can boost heart health and reduce the risk of stroke. Green tea is famous for weight loss while the caffeine in black tea gets us up in the morning. With your own plant, you get all these benefits plus the joy of gardening!

There are hundreds of tea flavors but only one true tea plant. Camellia sinensis is the vegetation you have to thank for your daily fix. Its evergreen foliage adds charm to any garden and homegrown comfort to your cup.

By growing Camellia sinensis, you’re taking part in a worldwide and ancient practice. Tea has been prized by Chinese monarchy, taken center stage in Japanese ceremonies, and introduced to the British by Portuguese royalty. At one point, it was such an expensive delicacy that it was smuggled into Britain to avoid the high prices.

Luckily, today you can grow this historical luxury in your own backyard. The price may have gone down, but the elegance and reverence of tea is ever-present in the beautiful Camellia sinensis. So, let’s dive into growing, processing, and sipping the world’s favorite beverage.

Get A Tea Plant

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  • Espoma Organic Holly-Tone Fertilizer
  • Dr. Earth Acid Lovers Planting Mix
  • Monterey Horticultural Oil
  • Neem Bliss 100% Cold Pressed Neem Oil
  • Safer Brand Insect Killing Soap

Quick Care Guide

Growing tea is surprisingly easy to do! Source: TeachAgPSU
Common Name(s)Tea, tea plant, Chinese tea, India tea, cha, tea camellia, matcha
Scientific NameCamellia sinensis
Months of Harvest4+ months of the year
LightPartial shade or mild sun
Water:Consistent medium watering
SoilWell-draining and lightly acidic
FertilizerHigh nitrogen in spring
PestsScale, spider mites, aphids
DiseasesAlgal leaf spot, root rot, canker

About The Tea Plant

To say the tea plant is historical is an understatement. It has played a huge role in the cultures of the past and continues to have great traditional, medical, and spiritual significance today. This single plant that originated in China and India around 2,000 years ago is grown and consumed all over the world today!

Camellia sinensis is adapted to tropical and subtropical climates, which means it’s going to like humidity and warm, not hot, temperatures. Because of this, commercial tea production is mostly concentrated in Asia, from Japan to Nepal to Sri Lanka.

Camellia sinensis is a woody shrub that can also grow into a small tree. Pruning usually keeps it around 3-7 feet tall, but it has the potential to reach 20 feet or higher. The coveted tea leaves are vivid bright green and oblong. In the fall and winter, this evergreen plant produces the cutest little white flowers with buttery yellow centers.

The Camellia genus includes various ornamentals with showy, colorful flowers. Out of them all though, the Sinensis species is the tea maker.

At tea time, we’re dealing with two cultivars of this plant. C. sinensis var. Assamica is mainly grown in India, where it likes the heat. It has large leaves that produce a strong, robust flavor. Because of this, it’s mostly used for black tea. C. sinensis var. Sinensis is grown in China and has much smaller leaves. It’s hardy in cold weather and has a delicate taste that’s prized in green and white teas.

Multiple Teas From One Plant

Tea plantations are not uncommon in major growing regions. Source: j_arlecchino

While you won’t get your herbal blends (called “tisanes”) from tea leaves, you will get all true teas from the same source. Occasionally, there will be blends that mix tea leaves with herbal ingredients for flavor, but anything that is truly tea will be made with the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant.

True tea includes black, green, oolong (sometimes called red), and white tea. Each flavor is created by processing the plant differently, primarily with oxidation. To put it simply, oxidation is what happens when a leaf dries up. This begins as soon as the leaf is picked and doesn’t stop until the gardener literally stops it with heat.

The more the leaf dries out, the darker it turns in color and the stronger its flavor is. As you can probably guess, white or green tea is made from barely processed leaves and black tea is the most oxidized. Of course, this is barely brushing the surface of the many ways to process tea. The many flavors out there may require different parts of the plant, various heating methods, and even fermentation. We’ll get into that a bit more later!

Planting Tea

The Camellia sinensis plant sets tea seeds really well, but they aren’t reliable for germination. To ensure they’re growing the right plant, most gardeners rely on store-bought starts. These shrubs are best grown outside but can also be indoor-outdoor growers. If you decide to plant in a container, be prepared for yearly pruning to keep the size manageable. You’ll also need a 3-5 gallon container with good drainage.

Start your tea growing in early spring, just before the growing season starts. If you choose to plant in the ground, select the appropriate location beforehand. Your little tea garden needs to be somewhere with partial shade – under a tree canopy is perfect. However, these plants need to be protected from cold wind and weather, so plant them on the south side of your house if needed. Space each shrub at least 36” away from other plants.

Like wine, tea flavor depends heavily on its growing environment, or terroir. Taste may differ between leaves grown in different climates, elevation, or even parts of the garden. You might try experimenting with finding your garden’s sweet spot by planting in several places.

Now that your location is set, remove the start from its container and plant it in well-draining, slightly acidic soil. If the location is below the water-table, build up a mound for the plant so it won’t drown. It may be tempting to pick the tea leaves right away, but it’s highly recommended to let the plant grow for about 3 years before harvesting.

These are typically slow-growing plants that don’t mind being rootbound. That being said though, make sure you do repot if your tea plant is obviously too big for its container.

Caring For Your Tea Leaf Plant

The camellia sinensis flower can be quite beautiful. Source: cosmic-angler

Now that your Camellia sinensis is planted, it needs some TLC before teatime. Here’s everything you need to know about growing these relaxing tea leaves.

Sun and Temperature

You may think tropical plants need full sun, but most naturally grow under tree canopies, where they thrive in dappled light. Give your green tea plant part shade and protect it from direct light and heat. Indoors, you’ll want to place it in indirect sunlight.

The ideal temperature here is between 50 and 90°F. When the temperature begins to drop below 50°F, the Camellia will go dormant for the winter. During this time, it should consistently be between 25 and 50°F. If needed, you can cover the plants or move potted ones to a warmer place. Keep in mind though that the plant won’t flower unless it’s allowed to go dormant.

Watering & Humidity

Tea plants need even and consistent watering. Water when the top inch of the soil dries out, which will be about once a week depending on location. Container plants go through water quickly, so you’ll be watering more frequently with them.

Humidity is a must for keeping tea plants spry. If you live in a naturally humid climate, your Camellia sinensis should thrive outdoors. For drier regions and indoor plants though, you’ll need to up the humidity. An easy way to do this is with a water tray. Just find a tray that’s larger than the base of the pot, fill it with pebbles, and add water to just below the pebble line. With your Camellia placed on top, the water will evaporate around it while the rocks keep the roots from drowning.

There are alternate methods of adding humidity, like using a plant humidifier. At the very least, you should mist the leaves daily with a spray bottle.

Soil

Camellia sinensis is an acid-loving plant with a preferred pH of 5.5-6.5. You’ll need to ensure the soil is acidic before tea planting and maintain the pH from there. Use a soil testing kit to determine if your growing medium needs to be doctored. To help keep the acidity up through the years, use an acidic fertilizer and mulch.

Waterlogged roots is a serious danger to the black tea plant, so you’ll need a fast and well-draining soil. It also needs to be fairly fertile, which can be achieved by adding some organic matter. Make sure it doesn’t mess up the drainage!

Fertilizing

You’ll need an acidic fertilizer for tea plants. There are lots of products out there made specifically for Camellias (Azalea fertilizer works well too). If you want to boost leaf growth though, look for a fertilizer that’s high in nitrogen.

Start fertilizing in early spring, when the tree is starting to grow. You can do a yearly application of slow-release fertilizer or 1-3 applications of short-term feed throughout the spring. If you’ve applied mulch to the ground, remove it before fertilizing. After you’ve applied the plant food, water it in and replace the mulch.

Pruning / Training

Tea is often grown in hedgelike rows for ease of harvesting. Source: f99aq8ove

This is a slow-growing plant, so you won’t have to prune too often. At least once a year though you should check for dead or dying branches. If you’re really serious about your tea-garden though, there’s more to it.

It’s a common practice in tea cultivation to clip off flower buds in order to get better leaf growth. We know it’s a shame to part with such lovely flowers, but it’ll help your tree grow bushier. You’ll also want to prune back the main branches to keep indoor trees containable and outdoor trees within harvesting reach. Additionally, remove crossing branches to encourage aeration through the tree.

Propagation

Since tea plant seeds don’t germinate well, we recommend propagating by a vegetative method. Stem cuttings are a common and easy method that creates clones of the original plant. You can multiply your own trees or take a cutting from a friend’s.

Take your cutting from the tip of a healthy branch, containing 2-4 leaves and growth buds. It should be around 3-4 inches long with a diagonal cut. Dip the cut end in a fungicide if necessary and then rooting hormone.

Stick the cutting an inch deep in well-draining, moist soil. The medium needs to be kept warm while the cutting roots, so start the process in the spring or keep it indoors on a heating mat during the winter (around 65-75°F). Lightly water it so the soil is consistently moist but not soaked. When the cutting has successfully rooted and shows stem or leaf growth, you can transplant it into its permanent home or a larger container. Your new tree should start blooming in 1 – 3 years.

Harvesting, Processing & Storing

Tea leaves are harvested at different times of year for different flavor profiles. Source: jaundicedferret

Before you dive into planning a tea party, the leaves need to be harvested and prepared. Here’s what you’ll need to do.

Harvesting

You’ll be picking your tea leaves by hand, just like the highest quality teas around the world are. Be sure to only pick disease-free leaves that aren’t broken or damaged in any way. 

In the spring, tea plants have “flushes” of new growth. At each flush, you can pinch off the new leaves and buds. So that the plant continues growing, it’s recommended to only harvest the leaves and buds at the tip of each branch. Like pruning, you shouldn’t remove more than a third of the plant.

If you’re planning to make green or white tea, you’ll want to pick the smallest, youngest leaves and buds. Some white teas are even made with only buds. Black and oolong tea, on the other hand, tastes best when made with larger, more mature leaves.

After harvesting, the next flush should be ready in 1-2 weeks. You can harvest whenever new growth shows up or just schedule a couple harvests per year so you have larger leaves to choose from. Some gardeners even harvest the flowers, which can be done in the late fall.

Processing

After harvesting, you’ll need to start processing the tea leaves right away. This is perhaps the most important part, since how you process them will determine the type of tea you get. Every step in processing tea leaves can impact the taste, so there’s lots of room for experimentation. You may find that each batch you process has its own flavor.

White tea is the least processed overall, and the finest tea leaves. The delicateness is achieved by only using buds and unfurled leaves at the very tip of a branch. In fact, the leaves are usually so young that they’re still coated in white fuzz. They aren’t heated like green tea, but instead allowed to oxidize slightly while they dry. Let them dry out gently – preferably in the sun.

Green tea is the least oxidized, which is what makes it so fresh-tasting. Oxidation begins as soon as you pick the leaf, so immediately apply heat to stop it. Steam them for a couple minutes to lock in their current flavor. Chinese-style green teas are pan-fried with dry heat rather than steamed, which gives them a distinctively different flavor. They can be carefully rolled between the hands without bruising the leaves to create a distinctive shape.

For Red or Oolong tea, we need partial oxidation. Begin by gently rolling the leaves in your hands to bruise them. This exposes more of the internal leaf to the air, speeding up the oxidation process. Now, it’ll only take around half an hour for the leaf to begin turning brown. You’ll need to heat them as soon as they start browning to prevent your fruity Oolong from becoming a strong black tea.

You can keep the leaves rolled or even form them into a tea ball. When they steep, the leaves will slowly unfold. They can even be steeped more than once for a slightly different flavor each time. 

Black tea is the most oxidized, giving it the strongest flavor. Roll the leaves, but bruise them a bit more this time. You may even crush them or bruise them multiple times. Once thoroughly beaten up, leave them out for several hours until they turn entirely brown. Like Oolong, the leaves can be shaped into a tea ball before drying.

Now that your tea leaves are oxidized and fixed at the desired taste, they need to dry. This can be done in the sun, which is recommended for white tea, or on a baking sheet in the oven. Lay the leaves out evenly on the baking sheet and heat them at 200-250°F for 10-20 minutes.

Storing

Tea won’t really go bad to the point that it’s poisonous, but it does get stale. Once processed, it’s best when used within six months but will stay fresh for about a year. Black and Oolong tea, if processed correctly, can store for two years without losing flavor.

Keep your tea in a dark pantry that’s room temperature or slightly cool. You must use an airtight container for the tea to store properly – you may even want to double up on lids. We know you’d love to show off the pretty leaves in a glass jar, but opaque containers are better since light won’t get through. Metal or glass is preferable since plastic can affect the flavor. Tea will also steal flavors from its storage neighbors, so keep it away from spices and coffee.

Troubleshooting

These leaf tips show some hints of leaf spotting. Source: matt 2906

As always, be on the lookout for any signs of distress in your Camellia. Catching these problems early on is the best thing you can do to keep your tea-plant healthy.

Growing Problems

The symptoms of growing problems are usually evident in the most important part of a tea shrub – the leaves. Yellowing leaves are typically a sign that the soil needs to be more acidic. Pale leaves, accompanied by stunted or leggy growth, may speak of nitrogen deficiency.

Magnesium deficiency is a common problem for camellias. Unlike the even paling of nitrogen deficiency, it causes yellowing in between the veins and eventual leaf drop. Prevent deficiencies by applying organic matter to the ground yearly.

Pests

Scale insects can be a big problem for Camellias. These are tiny insects that come in a myriad of colors. Most secrete honeydew which often grows sooty mold and attracts ants. Scales feed on sap, causing the leaves to yellow and drop. Horticultural oil and neem oil are excellent organic controls for this pest. When coated on the plant, they will smother the insects.

Spider mites are miniscule arachnids that cover the leaves with fine webs. They make little yellow dots on the leaves and eventually kill them. They like dry conditions, so make sure your Camellia is well-watered. They can be removed with insecticidal soap or even a strong blast of water.

Last, we have the common yet threatening aphids. Large infestations of these buggers can yellow the leaves, make decaying spots, and stunt shoot growth. Like scales, they make honeydew that invites sooty mold and entices ants to visit. Minor populations can simply be pruned off the tree or sprayed with water. Large numbers call for a more serious control though, like insecticidal soap.

Diseases

Algal leaf spot shows up as silvery, raised spots on the leaves. Large infections can yellow and kill the leaves. This disease thrives in hot, humid weather, and must be caught early on. The best control method is to prune the infected leaves and allow good aeration through the bush.

Root rot, usually caused by Phytophthora or Pythium, damages the plant under and above ground. It starts with waterlogged roots that start to rot and can move up the shrub. This disease will slow the growth, yellow leaves, and eventually kill the whole tree. The most efficient way to prevent root rot is to use well-draining soil and not overwater. If you suspect root rot is already underway, stop watering, switch to a better soil, and apply fungicide.

Canker and dieback wilts new growth, kills leaves, and creates lesions on older wood. This disease enters the plant through a wound, combined with heat and humidity. Whenever you prune or harvest your C. sinensis, keep the wounds dry and aerated until they callous over. If you notice infected leaves or twigs, prune them right away. If needed, fungicide can be applied yearly in the spring.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long does it take to grow tea?

A: Once planted, it’ll be about 3 years before your Camellia sinensis can be harvested.

Q: Can you grow tea from tea bags?

A: It’s best to leave your tea bags in the pantry. Tea plants can only be grown by live vegetative propagation or tea seeds, which the bags don’t contain.

Q: Is tea plant the same as tea tree?

A: Tea plants are shrublike and can grow like trees. However, the term “tea tree” usually refers to Melaleuca, which is a completely different plant.

Plant Care Tips For The New Zealand Tea Tree

Leptospermum scoparium [lep-toh-SPER-mum, sko-PAIR-ee-um] is a flowering evergreen shrub belonging to the Myrtaceae family along with the bottle brush tree.

It’s native to New Zealand and Australia, where it’s popularly grown outdoors for its unique, delicate flowers.

Pin

Often cultivated for mānuka honey because of its antibacterial properties, produced when honeybees gather the nectar from its flowers.

In the late 1700s, Captain Cook explored the South Pacific and gave his crew tea brewed from the leaves of this plant.

This led to the common name New Zealand Tea Tree which is far easier to pronounce than its scientific name.

You may hear this plant called by other common names including:

  • Manuka
  • Manuka myrtle
  • Broom tea tree
  • Tea tree
  • Snow White

Besides using the leaves to brew tea, parts of the plant have served other uses.

New Zealanders used the wood to make handles for tools, while the sawdust provides flavor when smoking meats or fish.

While it’s not the easiest plant to grow, a few basic care tips should help increase the chance of successful cultivation.

Leptospermum Scoparium Care

Size & Growth

The New Zealand Tea Tree produces dense, bushy foliage and reaches a height of about 3’ feet.

It’s a medium grower and may take several years to achieve a height of more than a foot.

When fully mature, the plant resembles a small tree with delicate branches.

The leaves are grayish or dark green and incredibly tiny.

Flowering and Fragrance

The flowers appear with five petals or double petals with a ruffled appearance.

It produces showy white flowers to pink or red.

The plant’s bloom time begins in January.

The flowers also last a long time, remaining on the plant until May.

Due to the longevity of the flowers, they make great cuttings for vases.

Light & Temperature

L. scoparium grows best in full sun to partial shade when placed outdoors.

It should never grow outdoors in regions where temperatures drop below 40° degrees Fahrenheit (4° C).

If cultivated indoors, place the plant near a window where it can get bright sunlight throughout the morning and afternoon.

Indoor plants should still come out for the summer.

The outdoor air is good for the New Zealand Tea Tree if temperatures don’t drop below 40° degrees Fahrenheit (4° C).

When the temperatures start to drop, bring it indoors.

It can remain in a cooler spot in the house through the winter, but it should still get lots of sunshine from a south-facing or west-facing window.

Cultivated within USDA hardiness zones 9 and 11 (USDA Zone).

Watering and Feeding

Water the plant evenly throughout the entire year.

As an early bloomer, this plant remains active throughout the year.

The first buds typically start to appear in November.

After the buds appear, ensure the plant continues to get plenty of water.

Water the plant every other week using a liquid garden fertilizer until the end of summer when the flowers die.

Soil & Transplanting

The New Zealand Tea Tree grows well in regular soil with good drainage.

To improve the drainage of poor soil, add some peat moss and sand.

Transplant the plant between early spring and late spring to freshen the soil.

If the roots seem crowded after removing the plant, consider moving to a larger pot.

Root rot may occur in overly moist soils.

Grooming

After the plant flowers, trim back growth to manage the shape of the plant.

TIP: Trimming the plant back in the fall is also a good time to take cuttings for propagation.

To trim the plant, use a pair of sharp scissors or clippers.

Start with the top of the plant, and trim no more than one-third of the plant.

How to Propagate Manuka

Use cuttings to produce new plants featuring flowers with the same color as the mother plant.

When grown from seed, the plant may produce different colors of flowers.

  • Use immature wood cuttings from the plant when taking cuttings during the early summer.
  • If taking cuttings during the winter, choose slightly hardened stems.
  • Before planting the cuttings, dip them in rooting hormone. More on How To use Rooting Hormone
  • Plant the cuttings in a mixture of perlite and peat.
  • Keep the plant near a bright window and water occasionally when the soil dries out.

Within about two months, the cuttings should take root.

Covering the cutting with plastic may speed up the rooting process.

Tea Tree Main Pests or Disease Problems?

The New Zealand Tea Tree rarely suffers from pest infestations, but aphid and whiteflies occasionally take over the plant.

If aphid pests appear, spray the plant with a mixture of warm water and soap.

Treat whitefly problems with an insecticide.

Besides pest infestations, the plant may develop red patches and its leaves.

The patches are a sign of fungal growth. Use a fungicide to stop it from spreading.

If the leaves start to drop, the plant isn’t getting enough water.

Increase the frequency of watering until the plant’s health improves.

Suggested Manuka Myrtle Uses

This light, airy bush makes a great addition to a large enclosed porch or conservatory.

In the summer, move the plant to a balcony or patio where it can get fresh air and more sunshine.

Manuka essential oil is obtained from the leaves and twigs of the plant by means of steam distillation.

Propagation of tea trees by cuttings - TeaTerra

How is tea planted, if not by seeds? Most tea trees have the ability to reproduce both sexually and asexually. Therefore, tea trees are propagated not only (and not so much) by seeds, but by their plant parts - cuttings or roots. Asexual reproduction is often chosen for the reason of controlling the desired qualities of the plant - the cutting has the same features as the mother tree, and the seeds have already played tricks with the genes, so they are less predictable.

1. Preparing the mother tree
The mother tree is a tea tree used for cutting cuttings. The way the mother tree grows and feels directly affects the quality of the offspring. Therefore, special conditions are created for mother tree gardens - nourishing the soil and protecting it from pests. Cuttings are taken only from healthy plants, for this they are observed for a long time, timely pruning is done, and how the plant behaves. The criteria for selection are good growth and productivity, strong branches, normal leaf color for this variety, full-bodied buds, good resistance to cold and pests. Usually, mother gardens are created on purpose, but they can also be organized on the basis of an ordinary garden.

2. Nursery/nursery preparation
Seedlings are planted in moist, loose soil, the site should be well lit. As a preparation of the land, it is recommended to carry out two plowings: the first deeper (about 25 cm) with simultaneous application of fertilizers, the second - to a depth of about 15 cm. As for fertilizers, it is best to use organic fertilizers, such as decomposed manure from the farm. It is necessary to break up clods of earth, remove stones and weeds. Around the nursery, it is necessary to establish an artificial irrigation system, as well as a drainage and water drainage system. In addition to freshly plowed red-yellow lands, it is necessary to create a top layer of crumbly loess (yellow earth) 5-7 centimeters thick. On the field it is necessary to form rows for planting.

3. Collection/pruning of cuttings
The length of the shoots on the parent tree at this point is more than 25 centimeters, the thickness of the branch is 3-5 mm. Shoots for 2/3 of the length should be half lignified and have a gray-brown, brown or marsh color. The growth of apical buds is stopped, the axillary buds are swollen, the leaves are ripe. These conditions are sufficient for cutting cuttings. Before collecting from the shoot, you need to remove the top, and the cuttings are harvested after about 10 days. To avoid moisture loss, the cuttings are collected when it is not very hot - either before 10:00 in the morning or after 15:00 and the cuttings of the branches will be in the shade. On the parent tree, so that it can recover, at least one leaf is left on the branch. After collecting the cuttings, they are cut and cut into shorter ones. The size of the resulting cuttings is usually about 3 centimeters, on the handle there should be a leaf with a developed axillary bud. For trimming and cutting, use sharp scissors to make the cuts as smooth and slightly slanted as possible. Cuttings after cutting should be carried out as soon as possible, but if necessary, the shoots can be stored and transported for some time, while it is important to moisten them and protect them from direct sunlight, it is especially important to monitor the moisture content of the cuts.

4. Cuttings
In China, cuttings can be carried out from March to October in almost all tea regions. Like tea leaves, cuttings are also divided according to the seasons of collection: spring, summer, winter. Spring and summer cuttings are considered the most successful. Summer cuttings have a fast rooting and high survival rate, but high heat, bright sun are negative factors, so growing time in the nursery should be increased, which will ensure good yields in the future. Autumn planting compared to summer planting has a number of advantages, and the growing time in the nursery during this period is shorter. During the spring leaf gathering, cuttings from good mother trees (famous teas) can also be taken. The main disadvantage of spring cuttings is poor root growth. Autumn seedlings (especially late ones) are small in size. However, with the use of film coatings and shading, the rooting rate of autumn seedlings improves markedly. The planting density should be between 3 and 3.75 million seedlings per square hectometer. Too low a density reduces the land use factor, and too high a density reduces the survival rate of seedlings.

Before planting, the soil is moistened, and after waiting about 2 hours, when the top layer of the soil dries out a little, planting of the cuttings begins.
The cuttings are planted according to the markup, the cuts must be directed into the wind (so that the cuttings do not blow away). The soil should be crushed around the cutting, and almost immediately after planting, they should be watered.

5. Nursery maintenance
Nursery maintenance includes shading, fertilization, irrigation, loosening, weeding, flower bud removal, pest and disease control. Cuttings cut on both sides are quite fragile and need careful care. The key success factors are light and water. Summer nurseries must be obligatory shaded - otherwise the sun will burn the cuttings. In spring and autumn, shading should be reduced. When cuttings give roots, shading should also be reduced. When the roots get stronger and grow up, and the shoot itself becomes woody, the shading can be gradually removed. A separate task for the supply of moisture. Cuttings absorb less water, it is important to prevent both excess and lack of moisture. Excess moisture affects the air content in the ground, making it difficult for the cuttings to breathe, delaying rooting, and even preventing it altogether. Practice shows that soil moisture should be 70-90%, and the amount of watering is determined by the climate and the nature of the soil. As a rule, within 45 days after pruning, watering should be done once a day in the spring and every other day in the fall, and in the summer - watered in the morning and evening. After rooting, watering should be reduced. In case of heavy rain and rainy days, it is necessary to ensure timely drainage of water.


When the root system of seedlings is formed, you can start feeding, the first dressings should be low concentrations. In the season when there are a lot of pests, you need to frequently inspect the plants to prevent harm and disease. To avoid the harm of weeds in the form of competition for fertilizers and water, it is necessary to carry out weeding and loosening the soil in a timely manner. In general, all measures should be taken according to the current weather and season.

Rooted cuttings after 40 days.



How to grow a tea tree (photo) at home: planting and care

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  • ✓ Growing tea at home - planting and care, tips and reviews
  • Perhaps I will not be mistaken if I say that tea is one of the most common drinks on Earth. It is prepared from the leaves of tea trees, which are native to countries in southeast Asia.

    But since this drink has become incredibly popular, today tea trees are cultivated in the form of low shrubs in regions with suitable climates around the world, even in Africa. You can try to grow them at home.


    EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR THIS ARTICLE IS HERE >>>

    CHINESE CAMELIA

    The tea tree belongs to the tea family, to the genus Camellia. Its official name is camellia sinensis.

    Therefore, it not only gives fragrant leaves for a drink, but also blooms very nicely. At the end of September, white corollas up to 4 cm in diameter with large bright yellow anthers bloom on the tea bushes, exuding a delicate refreshing aroma.

    By winter, fruits ripen - round, three-leaved, dark green boxes with round, up to 1.5 cm in size, brown seeds inside. If you plant these seeds fresh, they germinate easily. However, as soon as they lie down for a couple of months, their germination rate drops sharply. Therefore, rarely anyone manages to grow a tea tree from seeds bought in a store. It is better to buy a seedling right away.

    PLANTING A TEA TREE

    And I was lucky. Quite by chance, I found out that my colleague has an adult, fruiting tea tree at home. And I begged him to share the seeds with me. At the same time, he explained how to sow them correctly.

    Before sowing, the seeds are soaked for 3 days in warm boiled water. Then they are buried 3-4 cm into an acidic loose substrate, as for azaleas, or into the ground taken in the forest from under the fir trees, mixed with peat and sand (4:1:1).

    The crops are moistened, covered with foil and placed in a warm (22-25°) place. Tea seeds can germinate from one to several months. My seedlings (4 pieces) sprouted after 6 weeks. When the sprouts formed 2 large leaves, I dived them into pots with a substrate and a drainage layer 5 cm thick at the bottom.

    Tea does not like stagnant moisture.


    See also: Tea - cultivation, varieties, care and useful properties. Cultivation history.


    PRUNING AND REPLACING TEA

    Seedlings grown to 15-20 cm should be cut to 10 cm from the soil to increase tillering. The following year, the plants are cut at a height of 20-30 cm. And then every year at the end of summer they correct the shape of the tea bushes. At home, it is rational to maintain them up to 50 cm high and wide. Cut lignified annual shoots can not be thrown away, but rooted in a moist substrate under a transparent bag or in a jar of water.

    For the first 3-5 years, the plants need to be transplanted each year into pots slightly larger than the previous ones. Then transplants are carried out 1 time in 2-3 years. It is important not to deepen the root neck.

    MORE MOISTURE!

    Tea trees are undemanding to lighting. My seedlings feel equally good at both southern and northern windows. But tea does not tolerate dry air and needs regular spraying (2-3 times a week) with warm water, as well as abundant watering. Twice a month it is necessary to feed the trees with solutions of complex fertilizers.

    In summer it is recommended to put the plants on the balcony or in the garden. On a hot afternoon, they are shaded with gauze. In winter, they are kept on an unheated glazed loggia or on a veranda at a temperature of 12-15 °. I just move my trees closer to the windows and fence off the batteries with foil screens. I do not carry out top dressing until spring, I reduce watering. Seedlings bloom at the age of 1.5-2 years.

    DEW-CHOICE

    Tea tree leaves are long (up to 10 cm) and narrow. They are harvested for making tea from 2-year-old plants and older. Tear off the tips of the shoots with two young leaves and a bud. Old coarse leaves are not suitable for a drink.

    Then the harvested must be dried - there will be green tea brewing. Or you can ferment (wither and mash so that the juice stands out), and then dry it - you get black tea. I prefer to make them fresh. In this case, tea releases a maximum of vitamins into the water, which are up to 4 times more than in lemons. And in tea leaves there is a lot of caffeine, which has a tonic effect, and tannin, which normalizes digestion. The taste of homemade tea is different from the purchased one, but, in my opinion, for the better.

    © Author: Sergey ALEKSEEV, Moscow


    Growing tea at home - planting and care, tips and reviews


    Homemade tea for the samovar

    tradition Already in what in what, and in tea we understand. But hardly many of us know that you can harvest tea leaves on your own windowsill.

    Having successfully grown a lemon at home, I, apparently by association (tea with lemon), thought: is it possible to grow a tea tree at home as well? The reference literature unequivocally convinced me that nothing is impossible in this, and after a while I bought a tea bush from an ad on the Internet. The price was rather big, but somehow fit into the family budget.

    Three years have passed since then, so I now have enough experience to share my impressions of the plant. In nature, the tea bush can grow on the most meager soils, almost on rocks, it easily adapts to different climatic conditions, easily endures both cold and heat. So, in general, tea is a hardy plant, although it comes from the subtropics, it is not at all a sissy. He rarely gets sick, but lives a very long time - more than a century.

    The tea bush is not only useful, but also beautiful, because most of the autumn it blooms with very pretty white flowers. In room conditions, the growth of this evergreen shrub will not exceed 50 cm. Tea is a light-loving culture, but a light shade will not harm the plant. At home, in winter, the tea bush needs a cool temperature, in summer it will be quite satisfied with 18-25 °. In winter, watering is very moderate, in summer - plentiful, and also - regular spraying. In the summer, he will gladly move to the balcony - fresh air will do him good.

    To grow a tea bush, you need acidic soil, not loose, but nutritious. You can use ready-made soil for azaleas.


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