Sawamizuka: A Late-Maturity Cultivar Gaining Attention for its High-Quality and High-Yield

Sawamizuka tea, a late-maturity cultivar, is becoming increasingly popular due to its high-quality and high-yield. This tea is now attracting attention at joint factories where it is processed and distributed to tea merchants.

Quality Characteristics

Sawamizuka tea has a thin, dark green appearance with good color and luster, but it may have a slightly reddish tint. Its aroma is different from that of the popular Yabukita cultivar, with a refreshing fine fragrance and infusion comparable to that of “Yabukita”. The taste is a bit astringent yet refreshing and rich. Tea merchants have acknowledged the fine color and luster of Sawamizuka tea, as well as its high marketability.

Cultivation Notes

Sawamizuka tea has a strong vigor and an open tree shape, which makes it easy to tailor from an early young tree stage. However, it is vulnerable to laceration-type frost damage despite being a late-maturity cultivar, so it is necessary to pay attention to its protection in the cold during the early stages of growth.

Processing Notes

The thin sprouts of Sawamizuka tea turn into a good shape after being processed with a dark green color and luster, although it may also have a reddish tint. In case of reddishness, the steaming time should be slightly lengthened and the tea temperature in the rough rolling/rubbing process should be reduced. The infusion color may also be slightly reddish in case of regular steam. If it is steamed a little deeper, the color will become a beautiful green.

Dissemination and Land Suitability for Cultivation

Sawamizuka tea is a high-yielding cultivar that can be cultivated in combination with the popular Yabukita cultivar. Although it has the same cold-resistance as Yabukita, it is resistant to anthracnose and has excellent vigor, making it suitable for cultivar combination cultivation in mechanized cultivation systems in both mountainous and flat areas in warm regions.

Despite its disadvantages, such as the late picking time and the possible scent of Fujimidori, Sawamizuka tea is becoming increasingly popular for its high-quality and high-yield, making it a cultivar worth considering for tea farmers and enthusiasts alike.

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