Spring Harvest Report 2014 #8 - Waiting For Jade Oolong
Our source of Tsui Yu Jade Oolong (台茶13號) had an interesting story to tell when we asked him about spring harvest.
Due to the late arrival of spring proper in Taiwan, and colder, dryer weather at the beginning of growing season, the farmer trimmed his first growth on his plants that amounted to sparse shoots on the plants early in the season. This will allow him to harvest a more even growth that proceeded with the arrival of more typical weather a few weeks later. So what normally would have been harvested weeks ago at 400m elevation will start to be harvested in the next week for our Tsui Yu source. We look forward to tasting this "alternative" spring harvest.
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We can see in the photo of the dried leaves above that they were hand-plucked while still very young and tender. This is evident not only by the size of the leaves, but also in the protective fur that is still on the whitish colored leaf buds. It is this stage of leaf growth, along with the heirloom cultivar of tea tree that give Bi Luo Chun its distinctive character among Green Teas — especially when it is from the first flush of spring tea buds!