When talking about a Camellia sinensis tea leaf, the bud refers to the youngest shoot of the leaves. While harvesting tea, it’s incredibly important to take great care in picking only the parts that are desired for the specific tea being produced. For most tea, one bud and two leaves are ideal. It takes about 40 days for new buds to blossom into a full flush, which navigates how often tea trees can be plucked.
You’ll be able to spot buds by their hairs - the small, hairy, light-colored leaves in your tea are bud. Buds tend to retain higher levels of caffeine and antioxidants, because of their youth and nutrient-rich nature.
Typically, the more buds, the more delicate the flavor of the tea. Bud only tea or tea that are primarily made of buds are more time intensive and take more precision to produce, making them more premium when they hit the market.
Some of our favorite bud heavy teas are our Nepali Sunrise and Golden Tips.