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Genus: Camellia (camellias)

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Asterids > Order: Ericales > Family: Theaceae

About 120 species, native from the Himalayas to Japan and Indonesia. Two species are cultivated in southern Africa: Camellia japonica (Common camellia) and Camellia sinensis (Tea).

Species cultivated in southern Africa

Camellia japonica (Common camellia)

Native to Japan and China. Camellia japonica is a well-known garden plant with over 2000 named cultivars. Flowers can be pink, red, variegated or mottled. Flowers in winter/spring.

Camellia japonica (Common camellia)

Camellia sinensis (Tea)

Native to China, Japan and Taiwan. Tea is the second most commonly drank liquid on earth after water. It has numerous medicinal benefits mainly due to its antibacterial and antioxidant properties. The cafeine in tea keeps us awake, sometimes too much so. Excessive tea drinking can cause anaemia due to inhibition of iron uptake. 



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