It's turned cold in China just as some of the first buds are sprouting. Not so cold that the plants are being damaged, just cold enough to affect the flavour. Cold snaps like this can make the tea taste bitter and halt growth. Luckily, tea growth in the higher mountains has only just started, or in some cases is yet to start and so the tea is not affected. However, some tea has been produced in the areas around the West Lake in Hangzhou as well as part of Fujian. More on this next week.In Darjeeling, due to the drought, the first flush has been slow to turn out. Gardens like Singbulli and Puttabong have produced some teas, one or two of note. However, it rained in Darjeeling today and this will spur growth.
27th March 2009