Growing Tea

Much of the fine tea we purchase from China is actually grown in Myanmar, which has just about the perfect climate. The ease of cultivation means that these farms run from the vast plantations of the Western imagination right down to little mom & pop operations like this one. The couple who own this plot (around 2 or three acres) is extremely proud of their success and were kind enough to come over and explain the process. The soil is so rich here that their work primarily consists of weed-whacking; a planted tea seed will sprout in just a few weeks, but…so will just about everything else. Fertilizer use is something of a foreign concept. Since there are multiple crops a year, the leaves collected from a plot this size might bring in about $500 to $1000 a year, which is a good enough wage to keep the two of them fed, the farm running, and the roof in good repair. They have been thinking about adding another wall, too.

Apparently this is botany week.

Well, for me every week is botany week, but mum & dad taught us to share.