An archaic spelling of camellia, an eastern tropical flowering shrub.
(ScTug: t. 198; 1. 111'; b. 19'6"; dr. 10'6"; s. 10 k.; cpl.
40; a.. 2 20-pdr. r.)
Camelia, a screw tug, was built in 1862 at New York as Governor; purchased there 17 September 1863; and commissioned 28 November 1863 with Acting Ensign R. W. Parker assuming command the next day.
From 21 January 1864 to 1 July 1865, Camelia served with the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron off Charleston, S.C., and at Port Royal, S.C. In addition to playing a part in the blockade which kept critically needed war materials and civilian commodities from entering the Confederacy, Camelia contributed officers and men to the naval brigade which carried out successful operations ashore in the Broad River area of South Carolina in November and December 1864 Returning to New York, the tug was sold there 16 August 1865.
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The camellia’s history of pageantry
Much ado is made over roses in Pasadena, home to the world-famous Rose Queen and court. But the winter-blooming camellia, currently at its seasonal peak, bears its own royal history in the area.
The flower’s regal tradition dates back more than 50 years to La Cañada Flintridge’s Descanso Gardens, which boasts North America’s largest camellia collection. Founder E. Manchester Boddy planted the first camellias in 1935 and built the collection throughout the 1940s by acquiring camellias locally and overseas.
By the ‘50s, the camellias’ vibrant beauty had captivated the public, and several local camellia societies had cropped up. In the ‘50s and early ‘60s, Descanso Gardens made the most of the camellia craze by hosting elaborate flower festivals in February that attracted hundreds of well-dressed men and women.
Camellia lovers strolled through flower “forests” and competed in camellia shows where the white, pink or red blossoms were judged on size, form, color and petal perfection.
Also objects of admiration: the annual Camellia Queens.
All this camellia pageantry celebrated a time of abundance in Southern California, when no one cared much about water conservation, and the thirsty camellia didn’t cause a second thought.
Imported from Asia, the plants made their way to America around 1800. They were first grown in New England greenhouses, and eventually transported to the Southern and Western states, where they thrived in the warm climates. In the 1920s, Japanese nurserymen made them popular as an ornamental plant in Southern California, said David Brown, executive director of Descanso Gardens. In the 1940s, they became the flower corsage of choice among the society set.
Today, the flowers typically bloom around older homes and at botanical centers like Descanso Gardens and the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens in San Marino. They’ve fallen out of favor with modern landscapers though, “because they require year-round water,” Brown said.
Back in the ‘50s and ‘60s, however, when saving water was not a major concern, young women traveled from across the San Gabriel Valley for the chance to be named Descanso Gardens’ Queen of Camellialand.
Photos from the era show young women in short shorts posing in front of a panel of male judges. Handwritten numbers are pinned to the women’s shorts. Once named queen, the winner changed into an elegant gown, and the outgoing queen presented her with a crown of camellias before rows of spectators. The new queen then reigned over the festival.
Camellia Queen 1961, Carol (Dickerson) Peck, had a camellia plant named after her and placed in the gardens when she was just 18. Although the plant, which bore white japonica camellias, hasn’t survived the years, the memories have.
“It was one of the highlights of my life, having a flower named after me,” Peck said. “I really did feel like a queen.”
The pageant died out in the mid- to late 1960s, when public interest in flower shows began to wane. However, Descanso Gardens is re-creating the past with a weeklong “Golden Age of the Camellia” celebration through Saturday that includes walking tours of the camellia forests, but no Camellia Queen.
Camellia monarchs still rule, though, to the east in Temple City, which this year hosts its 66th annual Camellia Festival from Friday through Feb. 28.
The festival, which includes a parade and carnival, got its start in 1944 when the Women’s Club of Temple City decided to honor the ever-present flower, said festival director Nanette Fish.
The next year, the festival crowned an 8-month-old baby, Sharon Ray Pearson, queen. She rode in an open car down the city’s main drag, Las Tunas Drive, as Camp Fire girls handed out camellia blossoms to spectators.
In 1947, the city aged up the queen. Officials decided that the festival should promote the growth of local youth groups. They selected the queen, as well as a king and several princes and princesses, from local first-graders.
One former Camellia Princess of 1959, Debbie (Becnel) Bush clearly remembers her time in the spotlight, even though she was only 7. “My dress was . . . green and scratchy, and I really wanted to be wearing the pretty pink chiffon dress the queen had on,” she recalls. It didn’t help that Bush was getting over the chickenpox. Still, she says, the overall experience was “awesome.”
Today, the king and queen and their royal court, as well as four banner carriers, are named during a coronation ceremony before the festival. They are selected earlier at another long-standing Camellia Festival tradition: the Royalty Play Day, where they engage in games and sing songs and are judged on their appearance, poise, personality and attention span.
The royals make public appearances throughout the year and, during the festival’s parade, ride on their own float, made of camellias, of course.
Floats and festivals aside, the camellia may be too big a water hog for today’s drought-conscious, native-plant-loving consumers.
But still, says Descanso Gardens’ Brown, the camellia remains “a cultural icon” in Southern California.
The history of camellia
It came from the Far East about two centuries ago and with its fascinating colors and sensual forms it has literally conquered the whole of Europe.
Its original name is “Tsubaki”, playing a key role in some religious rituals (in fact it identifies the divine element), is also recognized in Japan as the flower that announces spring.
We are talking of the Camellia, a woody plant, originating from Japan and China, which has oval leaves, pointed, glossy and dark green color and soft petals, gently rounded, whose colors vary from white to pink or to red.
This flower is considered the symbol of the utmost refinement of beauty and excellence of eternal love.
It was a Jesuit missionary, Father Georg Joseph Kamel (to whom we owe the name of the plant), to bring the first camellias in the old continent, around 1740. It was love at first sight for this beautiful and elegant plant that soon became the protagonist of the gardens of all Europe.
Camellias arrived around 1786 in Italy, when the first plant was located in the English Garden of the Royal Palace (Reggia di Caserta) at the behest of the Queen of Naples, Maria Carolina Hapsburg.
This beautiful flower, spread rapidly in many areas of the country until it arrived in our Velletri.
It is not known who introduced Camellia in Velletri, or the period it arrived. The only certain fact is that here the camellias, have found their natural habitat: the volcanic soil, rich in minerals, allows this plant to grow and flourish in rich and varied forms.
From 800 onwards there is no garden or vineyard of Velletri, where the colors of the “Japanese rose” do not dominate on the rest of the vegetation.
Feast of the Camellias in Velletri
We have to wait until 1994 to find the first evidence of initiatives dedicated specifically to Velletri camellias. Until then, the cultivation of camellias was absolutely common in the countryside of Velletri the Japanese flower, mostly used for decoration funeral, was not taken into account until the early nineties when, by accident, the camellia became a symbol of Velletri and has meant that the city was known worldwide for its production. All this happened thanks to an article published in the magazine of the “Italian Society Friends of Flowers” in which, for the first time, was made a reference to the beautiful and long-lived camellia trees in the area. Furthermore this article has prompted the leaders of the Garden Club of Perugia to contact with the author of the script, a resident of Velletri, and visit some public gardens in the month of March. At the same time a well-known local nurseryman had shown to groups of fans from Rome, the camellias of one of the most beautiful gardens in the city. This initiative “go to the Camellias”, which began in 1993, has seen the fundamental contribution of an unforgettable character in the history of this feast: Piero Caneti, an expert in botany resident in Velletri with the family, which began visiting the gardens of the area to learn and see with the eyes of a great admirer of varieties of camellias hidden in the vineyards of Velletri. From these early itineraries, to the discovery of the Camellia of Velletri and the passion of great admirers of the Japanese plant, the first above all Piero Caneti, were laid the foundations of what would become a real annual event: “The feast of the Camellias”. The year after the intervention of the Garden Club of Perugia began the first collaboration between the creators of the festival and the Company’s Board of Tourist of Velletri and Lariano led by Joseph Masella. Since the beginning, there were identified the gardens among the most beautiful and rich varieties of camellias and other plants and local typical products. To visit these gardens, mostly private, it was decided to use public transport, small bus carrying visitors from a garden to another. This idea still remains today, and this year will see the exceptional opening of what was the garden of Piero Caneti sold, after his death, to other owners, who conserve and treat it with great commitment and dedication.
Velletri has thus become, in effect, “City of the Camellias” being written by the city council also to the Italian Society of the Camellias, a group that brings together enthusiasts, nurserymen and Italian scholars in the field.
The Feast of the Camellias, now in its 19th edition, is held every third Sunday in March and has become an important event for the city, with culture and art.
The historic center and the municipal gardens are transformed into a veritable open-air flower market where you can see and buy wonderful varieties of camellias and more.
Photographic and painting exhibitions dedicated to the Japanese plant are held in the most important parts of the city.
Over the years this event has become an important moment of cultural exchange with Japanese and Thai people who come to visit our city out of curiosity to see how the flower of their native land has been adapted to our area.
Just to reinforce this special and unique bond between Velletri and Japan, for this 19th edition of the Festival of Camellias, it was decided to recreate the Japanese in the historic center. Production Designer inspired architecture, culture and daily life Asian, made by Sergio Gotti will be placed in the main squares. An encounter between two cultures, then, is the leitmotif of the event which, although very different, is linked by a flower that for centuries has been a symbol of elegance and beauty.
The Story Behind New Orleans' Camellia Brand, the Oldest Dried Bean Company in the Country
Beans from this fourth-generation family owned business are a Southern pantry must.
If you&aposre a Southerner, chances are you love cooking with beans. Red bean and rice. Succotash galore. Hoppin&apos John on New Years&apos Day? Wouldn&apost dream of starting January any other way.
When it comes to dried beans to make all your favorite beans recipes, we&aposre partial to the oldest dried bean company in America, Camellia Brand, born and based in New Orleans, Louisiana. Now in its fourth generation of family leadership, Vince Hayward leads L.H. Hayward & Company, founded by his great-grandfather Lucius H. Hayward Jr., who created the brand behind the beloved beans in 1923. Hayward Jr. started out as a horse-and-buggy traveling salesman for the then-developing National Biscuit Company —now known as Nabisco — before opening a wholesale business selling dried beans and fresh produce on Front Street along the Mississippi River in New Orleans.
When Hayward Jr.&aposs son, Gordon, took on the family business, he created the Camellia Brand, and packaged the beans in cellophane bags, a new move for the beans&apos industry that helped catapult their beans into pantries across the South. As for the brand&aposs namesake? That comes from Gordon&aposs mother&aposs favorite flower, the speckled variety of Camellias, which also happens to be the oldest type of Camellias in the South. In 1947, the brand name was trademarked, and in the following decades the beans went on to be a staple across the South and beyond.
"I grew up bitten by the bug of business. From the age of ten, I would be out mowing neighborhood lawns, selling snowballs and even working as a bartender," says Vince in a company press release, clearly revealing a knack for business in his bones from childhood. These days, he&aposs all about celebrating the dish which his family helped make so popular: "Red beans and rice are tightly woven into the fabric of the southern United States,"he says, adding its omnipresence in New Orleans. "It&aposs always been what&aposs for dinner on Monday."
Camellia - A Brief History
The suburb of Camellia is an industrial suburb on the south bank of the Parramatta River, east of the Parramatta CBD. It is part of the Rosehill Ward of the City of Parramatta. Camellia is surrounded by the Rosehill Racecourse to the south, Clay Cliff Creek to the west, and Duck River to the east. Clay Cliff Creek is of particular historical significance as it is where Governor Arthur Phillip and Captain David Collins, Lieutenants Henry Lidgbird Ball and John Cresswell, Reverend Richard Johnson and Doctor John White, with armed soldiers and seamen camped for the night on 23 April 1788 on their exploration of landforms which were subsequently named the Crescent and Rose Hill. The major roads shaping the suburb of Camellia are James Ruse Drive and Grand Avenue.
The Burramattagal clan of the Darug people were the original inhabitants of this land. Clay Cliff Creek with its freshwater, and the Parramatta River provided a consistent and varied source of foods for the members of this clan. 
First land grants
Charles Williams, alias Christopher Magee, received the first land grant in Camellia. He was granted 30 acres (12 hectares) by Governor Phillip on the south banks of the river on the 18 July 1791. Christopher, who had been sentenced at the Old Bailey to seven years’ transportation, arrived on the First Fleet per ‘Scarborough’ on 26 January 1788 . On the 31 August 1788 Christopher married Eleanor McCabe/McCave/Magee, who had also been tried at the Old Bailey and arrived on the First Fleet per ‘Lady Penrhyn’ and ‘Prince of Wales’. On the 18 January 1793, Christopher, Eleanor and their daughter, and a woman named Mary Green were on a boat on Parramatta River returning to Parramatta, when the boat overturned near Breakfast Point. There were reports that they had been drinking and arguing, and this had resulted in the accident. Eleanor and her child and Mary all drowned – only Christopher survived. Christopher had tried to save the child, but failed. Eleanor and her daughter were buried by Christopher on the grant received, in front of the hut in which they lived. Eleanor and her daughter’s grave still stands today, and is one of the oldest in the country.
Eleanor Magee’s grave north of Camellia Railway Station
Another original grantee was Lieutenant William Cummings. He arrived in 1792 with the New South Wales Corps, and was granted 200 acres by 1794. Christopher Magee eventually sold his grant, which included the house, crop and stock, to Lieutenant Cummings for less than one hundred pounds. These combined land grants were purchased by John Macarthur Esquire in 1816. 
The naming of Camellia
Silas Sheather arrived in Sydney in 1839 with his family. His father Henry Sheather was contracted to work as a gardener for Sir William Macarthur in his plant nursery at Camden. Silas also worked at the plant nursery at Camden Park, which most likely included camellia seedlings, and later worked at Newlands and at Elizabeth Farm for George Oakes. Silas married Anne Bellamy in 1850, and in 1852 he entered a lease of about three acres of the Elizabeth Farm Estate with the permission of Sir William Macarthur. This lease was located on the banks of the Parramatta River on the eastern side of the Clay Cliff Creek. It was here that Silas developed his camellia nursery, and had many different varieties of camellias for sale. As camellias were the speciality of his nursery, Silas named his nursery Camellia Grove Nursery. In 1889 Silas purchased the land, which remained intact until after his death in 1906. In 1916 it was purchased by James Hardie and Company.
The railway station which opened in 1885 was originally known as Subiaco, but this needed to be changed as it was being confused with the significant home built by John Macarthur’s nephew, Hannibal Macarthur.  As a result, in 1901 the railway station’s name was changed to Camellia, taking the name from Silas Sheather’s Camellia Grove Nursery, and from this alteration the suburb gained its name.
One of Camellia’s major industries was the tannery and boot making business Anschau’s Tannery which was opened in 1895, and established by the German migrant Joseph Anschau. This site was later taken up by Continental Grain Limited, which later purchased Meggitts Limited, one of the state’s largest seed crushing plants. In 1896 approval was received to erect a slaughter yard and meat processing plant that was called Sandown Meat Works. This company burned down in 1923.
The James Hardie Company, an asbestos-cement products manufacturer, was established in 1916 and began producing in 1917. The company was established on the eastern side of Camellia Railway Station. The company began making asbestos sheet cladding under the brand name ‘Fibrolite’. Gradually the range was extended to cement water pipes, plumbing accessories, brakes and heat – insulating materials.  The company closed in 1996. James Hardie was influential in the growth of Camellia, but this became controversial with the knowledge of the impact that asbestos has on human health.
The Australian Cream Tartar company was formed in 1926. This factory was serviced by a the Sandown rail spur, a private railway which provided rail transport for the factories established on the south bank of the Parramatta River. John Bennett had received parliamentary approval to construct a private line to the Rosehill racecourse in 1886 which opened the industrial area to rail transport.
Other major industrial enterprises included Wesco Paints, registering in 1920 Goodyear Tyre and Rubber Company, who began manufacturing in Camellia in 1933 and significantly, the Shell Oil Company, which closed in 2012.
The future of Camellia
The NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment in consultation with the City of Parramatta have prepared a draft Camellia Town Centre Master Plan which will guide the future development of the industrial area over the next few decades. The objective is to shape the community as a new riverside community, with improvements including transport and road upgrades, walking and cycling paths. The Parramatta Light Rail, Stage 1, when completed in 2023, will provide frequent services from a station in Camellia to Parramatta, North Parramatta and Westmead’s employment, education, health and entertainment opportunities. The light rail will also provide easy access to the suburbs of Rydalmere, Dundas, Telopea and Carlingford. 
The Stage 2 route for the Parramatta Light Rail from Camellia Town Centre to Olympic Park is currently being finalised and will provide further connections east of Camellia to Ermington, Melrose Park, Wentworth Point and Sydney Olympic Park.  The draft plan also addresses environmental issues governing the site and crucial remediation measures required to reinvigorate the suburb and lead to its future development and renewal.
This in conjunction with other key initiatives to create a community hub will help to rescue what has been seen as a ’lost suburb’.
Caroline Finlay, Regional Studies Facilitator, City of Parramatta, Parramatta Heritage Centre, 2019
Tea are made by steeping the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant, an evergreen plant which grows in tropical and subtropical climates.The tea plant
Camellia sinensis has been systematically bred and selective varieties cultivated since the spread of tea. As with apple trees and grapevines, cultivars with individual appearance and taste characteristics have arisen as a result of selective breeding. Naturally occurring variation is rare. In agronomy, the term cultivar is used to denote a plant variety that has been selectively breed for desirable characteristics which can then be maintained in cultivation.
The tea plant’s region of origin extends from northern Burma (Myanmar) to the southern Chinese provinces of Yunnan and Sichuan.
If left to grow undisturbed, the tea plant will reach a height of several meters and an age of over 1000 years. In tea plantations, farmers are careful not to allow the tea plants to grow too high. The plants are pruned to waist height. This simplifies the harvest. A tea picker can work standing upright and doesn’t have to stretch or stoop.
Tea varieties characteristically carry a name which describes their appearance. The Chinese name the oldest tea plants from tea’s region of origin as tea “of the high trees with large leaves” (Qiao Mu Da Ye Zhong). There are two varieties that are common in China nowadays. The first, Camellia sinensis var. assamica, is used to make Pu-erh, as well as nearly all of the Indian tea varieties apart from Darjeeling. Pu-erh is the most widespread post-fermented tea. The Chinese call Camellia sinensis var. assamica the variety “of the large leaves” (Da Ye Zhong).
Expanding out from the Yunnan and Sichuan provinces, tea cultivation extends to other regions of China, thereby giving rise to new varieties and some natural variations of the plant which adapted or were adapted to their respective regional climates by forming smaller leaves. These teas are grouped together as Camellia sinensis var. sinensis, a classification which started and was taken up by the Western world. The classification means, unlike the name suggests, a range of teas. The majority of Chinese teas, as well as Japanese teas and Formosa teas from Taiwan, fall into the category of Camellia sinensis var. sinensis. The Chinese call these tea varieties “teas of the small leaves” (Xiao Ye Zhong).
Oolong is a variety of tea which is classified as being midway between green and black teas. It, and some varieties of white tea, are considered exceptions, since they are both cultivated large-leaf teas (Da Ye Zhong). More varieties appear every year. China’s farmers cultivate several hundred varieties of Camellia sinensis for industrial tea plantations. This is the highest number worldwide.
HISTORY IN BRIEF
China’s Emperor Shennong introduced tea to his court in 2737 BC –according to this legend, the history of Chinese tea culture began 5000 years ago. In fact, it has been proven that the habit of drinking tea developed 3800 years ago, during the Shang-Dynasty (1766-1050 BC). Tea was first employed as a medicine in Yunnan Province. At that time, the tea leaves were boiled in water with the other ingredients of the remedy, such as butter, herbs and spices. Butter tea, as it exists to this day in Tibet, is reminiscent of this method of preparation. The oldest testaments to Chinese tea culture and tea consumption are dated to the 10th century BC. Tea as a drink was well known as early as the Qin Dynasty (3rd century BC), and ultimately established itself during the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD). Attesting to its popularity, it was exported to Korea, Japan and Vietnam. The first book about tea ‘Cha Jing’ (The Classic of Tea), in which the author Lu Yu (728-894) classified the tea plants, appeared during this time. Tea was not stored loosely, but rather pressed into bricks to make its transport easier and to save storage space. The by now conventional form of storing and selling tea loose is approximately 600 years old. It arose during the Song and Ming Dynasties. Chinese tea is categorized into six types worldwide: white tea, green tea, yellow tea, oolong, black tea, and dark tea the latest also called post-fermented tea. Each tea type is characterized by the way the tea leaves are processed.
Green tea has been produced since the 12th century, although its method of production has changed. Initially, the tea leaves were steamed. In the 16th century, the roasting of tea was established along with the introduction of oolong. Portuguese missionaries and merchants brought Chinese tea to Europe 400 years ago. Thereafter tea acceded its triumphant march through the Western world. It reached Great Britain in 1660, but it took another hundred years before its general spread and the British advanced to a European tea nation. It was the British who introduced tea in India and developed cultivation, striving to break the Chinese monopoly.
Dates from the history of tea are not absolutely certain. The production, introduction and spread of a variety or its graft didn’t happen at just one time, but rather were the result of processes. For example, while the beginning of commercial production of black tea dates from the 19th century, some sources, however, point to its use in China as early as the first half of the 18th century.
Camellia sinensis originated specifically around the intersection of latitude 29°N and longitude 98°E, the point of confluence of the lands of southwest China, Tibet, north Burma, and northeast India. The plant was introduced to more than 52 countries, from this centre of origin. 
On morphological differences between the Assam and Chinese varieties, botanists have long asserted a dual botanical origin for tea however, statistical cluster analysis, the same chromosome number (2n=30), easy hybridization, and various types of intermediate hybrids and spontaneous polyploids all appear to demonstrate a single place of origin for Camellia sinensis—the area including the Yunnan and Sichuan provinces of China, and northern part of Burma. 
Yunnan Province has also been identified as "the birthplace of tea. the first area where humans figured out that eating tea leaves or brewing a cup could be pleasant."  Fengqing County in the Lincang City Prefecture of Yunnan Province in China is said to be home to the world's oldest cultivated tea tree, some 3,200 years old.  
According to The Story of Tea, tea drinking likely began in Yunnan province during the Shang Dynasty (1500 BC–1046 BC), as a medicinal drink.  From there, the drink spread to Sichuan, and it is believed that there "for the first time, people began to boil tea leaves for consumption into a concentrated liquid without the addition of other leaves or herbs, thereby using tea as a bitter yet stimulating drink, rather than as a medicinal concoction."  Scholars believe that tea drinking likely originated in the southwest of China and that the Chinese words for tea may have been originally derived from the Austro-Asiatic languages of the people who originally inhabited that area. 
In one popular Chinese legend, Emperor Shennong was drinking a bowl of just boiled water because of a decree that his subjects must boil water before drinking it.  Some time around 2737 BC, a few leaves were blown from a nearby tree into his water, changing the color and taste. The emperor took a sip of the brew and was pleasantly surprised by its flavor and restorative properties. A variant of the legend tells that the emperor tested the medical properties of various herbs on himself, some of them poisonous, and found tea to work as an antidote.  Shennong is also mentioned in Lu Yu's famous early work on the subject, The Classic of Tea.  A similar Chinese legend states that the god of agriculture would chew the leaves, stems, and roots of various plants to discover medicinal herbs. If he consumed a poisonous plant, he would chew tea leaves to counteract the poison.
A rather gruesome legend dates back to the Tang dynasty. In the legend, Bodhidharma, the founder of Chan Buddhism, accidentally fell asleep after meditating in front of a wall for nine years. He woke up in such disgust at his weakness that he cut off his eyelids. They fell to the ground and took root, growing into tea bushes.  Another version of the story has Gautama Buddha in place of Bodhidharma. 
The Chinese have consumed tea for thousands of years. The earliest physical evidence known to date, found in 2016, comes from the mausoleum of Emperor Jing of Han in Xi'an, indicating that tea was drunk by Han dynasty emperors as early as the 2nd century BC.  The samples were identified as tea from the genus Camellia particularly via mass spectrometry,   and written records suggest that it may have been drunk earlier. People of the Han dynasty used tea as medicine (though the first use of tea as a stimulant is unknown). China is considered to have the earliest records of tea consumption,   with possible records dating back to the 10th century BC.   Note however that the current word for tea in Chinese only came into use in the 8th century AD, there are therefore uncertainties as to whether the older words used are the same as tea. The word tu 荼 appears in Shijing and other ancient texts to signify a kind of "bitter vegetable" (苦菜), and it is possible that it referred to several different plants, such as sow thistle, chicory, or smartweed, including tea.   In the Chronicles of Huayang, it was recorded that the Ba people in Sichuan presented tu to the Zhou king. The state of Ba and its neighbour Shu were later conquered by the Qin, and according to the 17th century scholar Gu Yanwu who wrote in Ri Zhi Lu (日知錄): "It was after the Qin had taken Shu that they learned how to drink tea." 
The first known reference to boiling tea came from the Han dynasty work "The Contract for a Youth" written by Wang Bao where, among the tasks listed to be undertaken by the youth, "he shall boil tea and fill the utensils" and "he shall buy tea at Wuyang".  The first record of cultivation of tea also dated it to this period (Ganlu era of Emperor Xuan of Han) when tea was cultivated on Meng Mountain (蒙山) near Chengdu. From the Tang to the Qing dynasties, the first 360 leaves of tea grown here were picked each spring and presented to the emperor. Even today its green and yellow teas, such as the Mengding Ganlu tea, are still sought after. 
An early credible record of tea drinking dates to 220 AD, in a medical text Shi Lun (食论) by Hua Tuo, who stated, "to drink bitter t'u constantly makes one think better."  Another possible early reference to tea is found in a letter written by the Qin dynasty general Liu Kun.  However, before the mid-8th century Tang dynasty, tea-drinking was primarily a southern Chinese practice.  It became widely popular during the Tang dynasty, when it was spread to Korea, Japan, and Vietnam.
Laozi, the classical Chinese philosopher, was said to describe tea as "the froth of the liquid jade" and named it an indispensable ingredient to the elixir of life.  Legend has it that master Lao was saddened by society's moral decay, and sensing that the end of the dynasty was near, he journeyed westward to the unsettled territories, never to be seen again. While passing along the nation's border, he encountered and was offered tea by a customs inspector named Yin Hsi. Yin Hsi encouraged him to compile his teachings into a single book so that future generations might benefit from his wisdom. This became known as the Dao De Jing, a collection of Laozi's sayings. 
Tang dynasty writer Lu Yu's (simplified Chinese: 陆羽 traditional Chinese: 陸羽 pinyin: lùyǔ ) Cha Jing (The Classic of Tea) (simplified Chinese: 茶经 traditional Chinese: 茶經 pinyin: chá jīng ) is an early work on the subject. According to Cha Jing, tea drinking was widespread. The book describes how tea plants were grown, the leaves processed, and tea prepared as a beverage. It also describes how tea was evaluated. The book also discusses where the best tea leaves were produced. Teas produced in this period were mainly tea bricks which were often used as currency, especially further from the center of the empire where coins lost their value. In this period, tea leaves were steamed, then pounded and shaped into cake or brick forms. 
During the Song dynasty, production and preparation of all tea changed. The tea included many loose-leaf styles (to preserve the delicate character favored by court society), and it is the origin of today's loose teas and the practice of brewed tea. A powdered form of tea also emerged. Steaming tea leaves was the primary process used for centuries in the preparation of tea. After the transition from compressed tea to the powdered form, the production of tea for trade and distribution changed once again.
The Chinese learned to process tea in a different way in the mid-13th century. Tea leaves were roasted and then crumbled rather than steamed. By the Yuan and Ming dynasties, unfermented tea leaves were first pan-fried, then rolled and dried. This stops the oxidation process which turns the leaves dark and allows tea to remain green. In the 15th century, oolong tea, where the tea leaves were allowed to partially ferment before pan-frying, was developed.  Western taste, however, preferred the fully oxidized black tea, and the leaves were allowed to ferment further. Yellow tea was an accidental discovery in the production of green tea during the Ming dynasty, when apparently sloppy practices allowed the leaves to turn yellow, which yielded a different flavour as a result. 
Tea production in China, historically, was a laborious process, conducted in distant and often poorly accessible regions. This led to the rise of many apocryphal stories and legends surrounding the harvesting process. For example, one story that has been told for many years is that of a village where monkeys pick tea. According to this legend, the villagers stand below the monkeys and taunt them. The monkeys, in turn, become angry, and grab handfuls of tea leaves and throw them at the villagers.  There are products sold today that claim to be harvested in this manner, but no reliable commentators have observed this firsthand, and most doubt that it happened at all.  For many hundreds of years the commercially used tea tree has been, in shape, more of a bush than a tree.  "Monkey picked tea" is more likely a name of certain varieties than a description of how it was obtained. 
In 1391, the Hongwu emperor issued a decree that only loose tea would be accepted as a "tribute".  As a result, tea production shifted from cake tea to loose-leaf tea and processing techniques advanced, giving rise to the more energy efficient methods of pan-firing and sun-drying, which were popular in Jiangnan and Fujian respectively. The last group to adopt loose-leaf tea were the literati, who were reluctant to abandon their refined culture of whisking tea until the invention of oolong tea.   By the end of the 16th century, loose-leaf tea had entirely replaced the earlier tradition of cake and powdered tea. 
During the Sui dynasty in China, tea was introduced to Japan by Buddhist monks. Tea use spread during the 6th century AD.  Tea became a drink of the religious classes in Japan when Japanese priests and envoys, sent to China to learn about its culture, brought tea to Japan. Ancient recordings indicate the first batch of tea seeds were brought by a priest named Saichō ( 最澄 ) in 805 and then by another named Kūkai ( 空海 ) in 806. It became a drink of the royal classes when Emperor Saga ( 嵯峨天皇 ) encouraged the growth of tea plants. Seeds were imported from China, and cultivation in Japan began.
In 1191, Zen priest Eisai ( 栄西 ) introduced tea seeds to Kyoto. Some of the tea seeds were given to the priest Myoe Shonin, and became the basis for Uji tea. The oldest tea specialty book in Japan, Kissa Yōjōki ( 喫茶養生記 , How to Stay Healthy by Drinking Tea) , was written by Eisai. The two-volume book was written in 1211 after his second and last visit to China. The first sentence states, "Tea is the ultimate mental and medical remedy and has the ability to make one's life more full and complete." Eisai was also instrumental in introducing tea consumption to the warrior class, which rose to political prominence after the Heian period.
Green tea became a staple among cultured people in Japan—a brew for the gentry and the Buddhist priesthood alike. Production grew and tea became increasingly accessible, though still a privilege enjoyed mostly by the upper classes. The tea ceremony of Japan was introduced from China in the 15th century by Buddhists as a semi-religious social custom. The modern tea ceremony developed over several centuries by Zen Buddhist monks under the original guidance of the monk Sen no Rikyū ( 千 利休 ) . In fact, both the beverage and the ceremony surrounding it played a prominent role in feudal diplomacy.
In 1738, Soen Nagatani developed Japanese sencha ( 煎茶 ) , literally simmered tea, which is an unfermented form of green tea. It is the most popular form of tea in Japan today. The name can be confusing because sencha is no longer simmered. While sencha is currently prepared by steeping the leaves in hot water, this was not always the case. Sencha was originally prepared by casting the leaves into a cauldron and simmering briefly.  The liquid would then be ladled into bowls and served. In 1835, Kahei Yamamoto developed gyokuro ( 玉露 ) , literally jewel dew, by shading tea trees during the weeks leading up to harvesting. By the 20th century, machine manufacturing of green tea was introduced and began replacing handmade tea.
The first historical record documenting the offering of tea to an ancestral god describes a rite in 661 AD in which a tea offering was made to the spirit of King Suro, the founder of the Geumgwan Gaya Kingdom. Records from the Goryeo dynasty (918–1392) show that tea offerings were made in Buddhist temples to the spirits of revered monks. During the Joseon Dynasty (1392–1910), the royal Yi family and the aristocracy used tea for simple rites. The "Day Tea Rite" was a common daytime ceremony, whereas the "Special Tea Rite" was reserved for specific occasions. Toward the end of the Joseon Dynasty, commoners joined the trend and used tea for ancestral rites, following the Chinese example based on Zhu Xi's text formalities of family.
Stoneware was common, ceramic more frequent, mostly made in provincial kilns, with porcelain rare, imperial porcelain with dragons the rarest. The earliest kinds of tea used in tea ceremonies were heavily pressed cakes of black tea, the equivalent of aged pu-erh tea in China. However, importation of tea plants by Buddhist monks brought a more delicate series of teas into Korea, and the tea ceremony. Green tea, "Jakseol(작설, 雀舌)" or "Jungno(죽로, 竹露)", is most often served. However, other teas such as "Byeoksoryeong(벽소령, 碧宵嶺)" Cheonhachun(천하춘, 天下春), Ujeon(우전, 雨前), Okcheon(옥천, 玉泉), as well as native chrysanthemum tea, persimmon leaf tea, or mugwort tea may be served at different times of the year.
The earliest record of tea in a more occidental writing is said to be found in the statement of an Arabian traveler, that after 879 the main sources of revenue in Canton were the duties on salt and tea. Marco Polo records the deposition of a Chinese minister of finance in 1285 for his arbitrary augmentation of the tea taxes. In 1557, Portugal established a trading port in Macau, and word of the Chinese drink "chá" spread quickly, but there is no mention of them bringing any samples home. In the early 17th century, a ship of the Dutch East India Company brought the first green tea leaves to Amsterdam from China. Tea was known in France by 1636. It enjoyed a brief period of popularity in Paris around 1648. The history of tea in Russia can also be traced back to the 17th century. Tea was first offered by China as a gift to Czar Michael I in 1618. The Russian ambassador tried the drink he did not care for it and rejected the offer, delaying tea's Russian introduction by fifty years. By 1689, tea was regularly imported from China to Russia via a caravan of hundreds of camels traveling the year-long journey, making it a precious commodity at the time. Tea was appearing in German apothecaries by 1657 but never gained much esteem except in coastal areas such as Ostfriesland.  Tea first appeared publicly in England during the 1650s, where it was introduced through coffeehouses. From there it was introduced to British colonies in America and elsewhere.
Portugal and Italy Edit
Tea was first introduced to Europe by Italian traveler Giovanni Battista Ramusio, who in 1555 published Voyages and Travels, containing the first European reference to tea, which he calls "Chai Catai" his accounts were based on second-hand reports in the polities of the Gulf of Aden Yemen and Somalia. [ citation needed ]
Portuguese priests and merchants in the 16th century made their first contact with tea in China, at which time it was termed chá.  The first Portuguese ships reached China in 1516, and in 1560 Portuguese missionary Gaspar da Cruz published the first Portuguese account of Chinese tea in 1565 Portuguese missionary Louis Almeida published the first European account of tea in Japan. 
Commercial production of tea was first introduced into India by the British, in an attempt to break the Chinese monopoly on tea.  The British, using Chinese seeds, plus Chinese planting and cultivating techniques, launched a tea industry by offering land in Assam to any European who agreed to cultivate tea for export.  Tea was originally only consumed by Anglicized Indians it was not until the 1950s that tea grew widely popular in India through a successful advertising campaign by the India Tea Board. 
Prior to the British, the plant may have been used for medicinal purposes. Some cite the Sanjeevani plant as the first recorded reference of tea use in India. However, scientific studies have shown that the Sanjeevani plant is in fact a different plant and is not related to tea.  The Singpho tribe and the Khamti tribe validate that they have been consuming tea since the 12th century. However, commercial production of tea in India did not begin until the arrival of the British East India Company, at which point large tracts of land were converted for mass tea production.
The Chinese variety is used for Sikkim, Darjeeling tea, and Kangra tea, while the Assam variety, clonal to the native to Assam, was used everywhere else. The British started commercial tea plantations in India and in Ceylon: "In 1824 tea plants were discovered in the hills along the frontier between Burma and Assam. The British introduced tea culture into India in 1836 and into Ceylon (Sri Lanka) in 1867. At first they used seeds from China, but later seeds from the clonal Assam plant were used."  Only black tea was produced until recent decades mostly in India, except in Kangra (present-day Himachal Pradesh) which produced green tea for exporting to central Asia, Afghanistan and neighboring countries. 
India was the top producer of tea for nearly a century but was displaced by China as the top tea producer in the 21st century.  Indian tea companies have acquired a number of iconic foreign tea enterprises including British brands Lipton, Tetley, Twinings and Typhoo.  Most of the Indian tea garden owners have focused on exports to markets like Europe and Russia, while very few have focused on building their own brands such as Makaibari, Dharmsala Tea Company, and a few others. While India is the largest consumer of tea worldwide, the per-capita consumption of tea in India remains a modest 750 grams per person annually.  Recently consumption of green tea has seen a great upsurge across the cities, and regions such as Kangra which were known for their green tea production historically, have seen a resurgence of their green teas in the domestic market.
Gilan in north of Iran is main production center of Iranian tea. Historically, Lahijan is the first town in Iran to have tea plantations. With its mild weather, soil quality and fresh spring water, Lahijan stands to have the largest area of tea cultivation in Iran. "Lahijan Spring Tea" is the best quality tea produced in the country. Tea is cultivated at other cities of Gilan, for example Fuman and Roudsar.
Taiwan is famous for the making of oolong tea and green tea, as well as many western-styled teas. Bubble tea or "Zhen Zhu Nai Cha" (Mandarin: 珍珠奶茶) is black tea mixed with sweetened condensed milk and tapioca. Since the island was known to Westerners for many centuries as Formosa—short for the Portuguese Ilha Formosa, or "beautiful island"—tea grown in Taiwan is often identified by that name.
United Kingdom Edit
The first record of tea in English came from a letter written by Richard Wickham, who ran an East India Company office in Japan, writing to a merchant in Macao requesting "the best sort of chaw" in 1615. Peter Mundy, a traveller and merchant who came across tea in Fuji in 1637, wrote, "chaa—only water with a kind of herb boiled in it".  In 1657, Thomas Garway, a "tobacconist and coffee-man" was the first to sell tea in London at his house in Exchange Alley, charging between 16 and 50 shillings per pound.  The same year, tea was listed as an item in the price list in a London coffee house, and the first advertisement for tea appeared in 1658.  In 1660 Samuel Pepys recorded in his diary: "I did send for a cup of tee (a China drink) of which I never had drank before."  It is probable that early imports were smuggled via Amsterdam or through sailors arriving on eastern boats.  The marriage of King Charles II in 1662 to the Portuguese princess Catherine of Braganza brought the tea drinking habit to court. Official trade of tea began in 1664 with an import of only two pound two ounces for presentation to the king,  which grew to 24 million pounds per year by 1801. 
Regular trade began in Canton (now Guangzhou),  where it was controlled by two monopolies: the Chinese Cohong (trading companies) and the British East India Company.  The Cohong acquired tea from 'tea men' who had an elaborate supply chain into the mountains and provinces where tea grew.  The East India Company brought back many products, of which tea was just one, which proved one of the most successful.  It was initially promoted as a medicinal beverage or tonic  but by the end of the 17th century was taken as an all-purpose drink, albeit mainly by the elite, as it was expensive.  Tea was traded in significant amounts by the 18th century, when tea was being sold by grocers and tea shops in London.  By the 1720s black tea overtook green tea in popularity as the price dropped, and early on British drinkers began adding sugar and milk to tea, a practice that was not done in China.  By the 1720s European maritime trade with China was dominated by exchange of silver for tea.  As prices continued to drop, tea became increasingly popular and by 1750 had become the British national drink.  A fungus reduced coffee production in Ceylon by 95% in the 19th century, cementing tea's popularity.  The escalation of tea importation and sales over the period 1690 to 1750 is mirrored closely by the increase in importation and sales of cane sugar: the British were not drinking just tea but sweet tea.  Thus, two of Britain's trading triangles converged: the sugar sourced from Britain's trading triangle encompassing Britain, Africa and the West Indies and the tea from the triangle encompassing Britain, India and China. 
In China, the Qing dynasty Qianlong Emperor wrote to King George III in response to the MaCartney Mission's request for trade in 1793: "Our Celestial Empire possesses all things in prolific abundance and lacks no product within its borders. There is therefore no need to import the manufactures of outside barbarians in exchange for our own produce."  Tea had to be paid in silver bullion, and critics of the tea trade at this time would point to the damage caused to Britain's wealth by this loss of bullion.  As a way to generate the silver needed as payment for tea, Britain began exporting opium from the traditional growing regions of British India (in present-day Pakistan and Afghanistan) into China. Although opium use in China had a long history, the British importation of opium increased fivefold between 1821 and 1837, and usage of the drug became more widespread across Chinese society. The Qing government attitude towards opium, which was often ambivalent, hardened because of the social problems created by drug use and took serious measures to curtail importation of opium in 1838–39. Tea had become an important source of tax revenue for the British Empire, and the banning of the opium trade and thus the creation of funding issues for tea importers was one of the main causes of the First Opium War. 
While waging war on China was one of Britain's tactics, it also began to use India for growing tea. After tea plants were smuggled out of China, plantations were established in areas such as Darjeeling, Assam, and Ceylon.  As an attempt to circumvent its dependence on Chinese tea, the East India Company sent Scottish botanist Robert Fortune to China to purchase and bring out of China tea plants, which were then taken to India, although it was the discovery of native varieties of tea plant in India which proved more important for the development of production there.
Tea remained a very important item in Britain's global trade, contributing in part to Britain's global dominance by the end of the 18th century. To this day tea is seen worldwide as a symbol of 'Britishness', but also, to some, as a symbol of old British colonialism. 
The Americas Edit
The drinking of tea in the United States was largely influenced by the passage of the Tea Act and its subsequent protest during the American Revolution. Tea consumption sharply decreased in America during and after the Revolution, when many Americans switched from drinking tea to drinking coffee, considering tea drinking to be unpatriotic.       The American specialty tea market quadrupled in the years from 1993 to 2008, now being worth $6.8 billion a year.  Specialty tea houses and retailers also started to pop up during this period. 
Canadians were big tea drinkers from the days of British colonisation until the Second World War, when they began drinking more coffee like their American neighbors to the south. During the 1990s, Canadians begun to purchase more specialty teas instead of coffee.  
In South America, the tea production in Brazil has strong roots because of the country's origins in Portugal, the strong presence of Japanese immigrants, and because of the influences of Argentina's yerba mate culture. Brazil had a big tea production until the 1980s, but it has weakened in the past decades.
The Aboriginal Australians drank an infusion from the plant species leptospermum. Upon reaching Australia, Captain Cook noticed the aboriginal peoples drinking it and called it tea. Today the plant is referred to as the "ti tree".
Through colonisation by the British, tea was introduced to Australia. In fact, tea was aboard the First Fleet in 1788. In 1884, the Cutten brothers established the first commercial tea plantation in Australia in Bingil Bay in northern Queensland Nerada Tea.  In 1883, Alfred Bushell opened the first tea shop in Australia in Queensland. In 1899, Bushell's sons moved the enterprise to Sydney and began selling tea commercially, founding Australia's first commercial tea seller Bushell's Company. 
In 2000, Australia consumed 14,000 tonnes of tea annually.  Tea production in Australia remains very small and is primarily in northern New South Wales and Queensland. Most tea produced in Australia is black tea, although there are small quantities of green tea produced in the Alpine Valleys region of Victoria. 
Sri Lanka Edit
Sri Lanka is renowned for its high quality tea and as the fourth biggest tea producing country globally, after China, India and Kenya, and has a production share of 9% in the international sphere. The total extent of land under tea cultivation has been assessed at approximately 187,309 hectares.  The plantations started by the British were initially taken over by the government in the 1960s but have been privatized and are now run by plantation companies which own a few estates or tea plantations each. Ceylon tea is divided into 3 groups as Upcountry, Mid country and Low country tea based on the geography of the land on which it is grown. 
The Somali Ajuran empire which established bilateral trading ties with Ming Dynasty China in the 13th century brought with them a myriad of commodities including tea. Africa has seen greatly increased tea production in recent decades, the great majority for export to Europe and North America respectively, produced on large estates, often owned by tea companies from the export markets. Almost all production is of basic mass-market teas, processed by the crush, tear, curl method.
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The History Of The Camellia
The Camellia japonica or Japan Rose, the species from which nearly all of our more valued garden varieties are descended, is, as we have already seen, said to have been introduced in 1739 but it is not mentioned in the sixth edition of Miller's "Gardeners' Dictionary," published in 1771. Notwithstanding this I find it thus described in " A History of Plants," by John Hill, M. D., published in 1751: - "Camellia. - The calyx is imbricated, and composed of several leaves, the interior of which are the larger. It is an oriental, described by Kaempfer in his 'Japan,' 850".
In the " Garden Vade Mecum," by John Aber-crombie, published in 1789, " Camellia japonica, or Japan Rose," is included in his list of both greenhouse and hothouse plants. In the "Practical Gardener," published in 1817, and in the 21st edition of "Every Man his Own Gardener," by the same author (1818), one species (C. japonica) and seven varieties only are enumerated..
Loudon in the " Encyclopaedia of Gardening," (1822) enumerates twenty-five varieties. In the "Greenhouse Companion" (1824) are colored plates of two varieties, Waratah and Lady Hume's Blush, the former of which is now superseded, but the latter is still much sought after. It is there remarked, " New varieties are continually originating by the nurserymen and other growers from seeds. A number of hybrids are in an advanced state but have not yet flowered".
The Camellia is frequently adverted to and figured in the botanical and horticultural publications of this time, and in the "Transactions of the Horticultural Society, in a paper read before the meeting, December 5, 1809, (vol. i., p. 175,) we find the following: - "In October, 1795, a Camellia japonica was planted here (the South Hams of Devonshire) among other shrubs in the open ground it has stood every winter since, without the smallest shelter, thrives well and has never had a branch or leaf injured by the weather. It is now about four feet high, the size of a gooseberry bush, but has not flowered." Similar experiments, which have been repeated frequently and in various soils and situations, seem to prove that the plant is nearly hardy in the climate of England, and may be safely planted out-of-doors among other evergreens in warm sheltered situations. But in thus treating it one loses the beauty of the flowers, as, owing to their being produced in March and April, they are nearly always spoiled by the spring frosts.
We remember planting out two varieties, against a west wall in 1836, and these passed through the winter of 1837-8 uninjured, although there were 30° of frost, and the Bays, Arbutus, and Laurels standing in the open quarters only a few yards distant were killed to the ground. Mr. Joseph Harrison ("Trans. Hort. Soc," vol. vii., p. 168) found the double white, the double red, and the double striped grow satisfactorily out-of-doors at Wortley Hall, Yorkshire, " planted in a brown loam on a rocky substratum." He covered the soil to the extent of three feet from the stem of each plant with ten inches of decayed leaves on the approach of winter, removing the leaves in spring. In 1829, a paper on the Camellia, by William Beattie Booth, was printed in the " Transactions of the Horticultural Society" (vol. vii., p. 519). In this paper six species and twenty three varieties are described, four of the latter being figured, and it is there stated: "Of these very ornamental plants the Society has formed an extensive collection, such as I may safely say is not surpassed at the present time by any other in the kingdom." It appears that the double white and double striped were introduced in 1792, Lady Hume's Blush in 1806, Fimbriata in 1816, Imbri-cata and several other varieties in 1824.
Many of the varieties originally introduced are now but little cultivated. Hardy plants of them may be met with occasionally in the gardens of the nobility and old English families, but some of the modern varieties raised from them are more beautiful, and consequently more generally cultivated within the last forty years. Many fine varieties have been raised in England, especially by Mr. Chandler, of Vauxhall Mr. Press, of Hornsey and Mr. Fielder, of Enfield and France, Belgium, Italy, and latterly America, have contributed largely to the improvement of the flowers by selecting and preserving variations by sports and by seed. In Loudon's "Encyclopaedia of Plants " (1820), eighteen garden varieties are enumerated, and in Paxton's "Botanical Dictionary" (edition 1849), as we have already mentioned, no fewer than 200 varieties are given. At this date there were at least three establishments near London where the Camellia was extensively cultivated, namely, those of Mr. John Smith, Dalston Messrs. Chandler, Vauxhall and Messrs. Loddiges, of Hackney. It was one of our greatest treats of that day to see the Camellias at Hackney when in flower in the early spring.
They were planted out in a large house, and many of the plants were thirty feet high, in splendid health and laden with blossoms. It was a perfect forest of Camellias, tenanted with blackbirds, thrushes, and other birds, which built their nests in the trees, passing in and out at pleasure through the open doors and windows. Probably there never was any floral display equal to this in England before, and it may be many years before we see the like again. Many of Messrs. Loddiges' large plants were, we believe, sold to the Crystal Palace Company and removed to their palace at Sydenham.
The Camellias of Messrs. Lucombe Pince & Co., of Exeter, have obtained a world-wide celebrity, and are worth going many miles to see. In nearly all the principal gardens and nurseries, few or many may be met with, but we believe that as far as regards quantity and variety our collection stands unrivalled at the present time. - William Paul in Gardener's Chronicle.