Camellia sinensis (L.) Kuntze

Tea, Camellia

Family: Theaceae

Genus: Camellia

Category: Shrub - Evergreen

Zones: 6 to 9

Size: 4 to 6' tall and wide

Growth Rate: Moderate

Exposure: Sun, Filtered Sun, Part Shade, Shade


White flowers with yellow stamens in autumn. Good heat and drought tolerance. Makes a good compact shrub.


'Gold Splash' - splotches of yellow on the leaves, small leaves and spreading habit (Ted Stephens, Nurseries Caroliniana)

'Rosea' - pale pink flowers and burgundy new growth, slow growing (Ted Stephens)

f. macrophylla 'Yellow Tea' - large leaf tea, yellow splotches (Ted Stephens)

Subordinate taxa: 


The Tea plant used for commercial tea. Native to China and introduced in 1740. The only commercial tea operation in the US, in fact in the western hemisphere, is on John's Island in South Carolina.

Published in Trudy Imp. S.-Peterburgsk. Bot. Sada 10: 195 in 1887. Basionym is Thea sinensis L.


Sources of Information

© 2010-12 Lisa J. Miner