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Album: By Country | By Date India | April 2001 < Prev: Devi Temple Festival | Next: Hiking in Periyar >
Travelogue: By Country | By Date India | April 2001  

April 2001 - Spice and Tea Tour
Papaya trees Pineapples Jackfruit Variegated bamboo
A bubble plant.  The sap is the fluid. vanilla Maggie getting attention These tea pickers used scissors instead of plucking directly with their hands.  The leaves are not plucked cleanly and have more sticks, stems, and older leaves than we saw in the hand-picked stuff.
Tea ready to go Bins to store the morning's harvest and to "wither" it.  The bins have air forced through a channel on the bottom.  This reduces the moisture content of the leaves.  The place is cool and smells fresh.  This sort of withering is faster but produces lower quality tea than simply letting the leaves wither on tats. This setup is called "trough withering." The quantity of leaves was amazing
From this hopper the processing begins After being crushed.  Crushing or "rolling" releases the juices that are then "fermented" to produce the tea flavor The crusher The tearing machines
Going into the fermenter Tea pouring from the fermenter.  Tea doesn't really "ferment" like beer or wine, but enzymes in the leaves work to produce the chemicals that give tea its flavor and color The tea is picked up here in baskets and carried to the drier Out of the drier.  Drying stops the fermentation
The wood-fired furnace This machine separates the tea by size of the particles - grades of tea The end product Umbrellas
Maggie in a treehouse