Busy day at Morimotos tea plantation
The Morimotos are very, very busy. Today they continue cutting Yutaka Midori, a vey early tea plant variety, from the biggest field approximately 20 minutes away from their house. As soon as the truck loaded with bags of fresh tealeaves arrive, they have to be unloaded as quick as possible to prevent oxidation.
On the transport belt they get cooled until they enter the steaming machine and in approximately four hours pass through several machines.
Later we go to a field of my very favourite tea bush variety Minami Sayaka, which has an intense flowery smell and a very nice green colour. Minami Sayaka (Sayaka means South) was especially created for the climatic conditions in the south of Japan. All together there is 13 varieties, which were registred by the tea institute close to Miyazaki. In whole Japan there exist four tea institutes and all together over 60 registered tea bushes varieties. Even though over 70% of the tea bushes in Japan are one variety: Yabukita, which is especially famous for Sencha teas.
The tea field with the Minami Sayaka plants was planted last month. As we arrive, I am very much surprised how small the plants are. That gives me hope, that our tea plantation one day will also grow to a reasonable size.