Tea - Camellia sinensis - The tea plant grows best in a warm climate with long sunlit days, cool nights and an abundance of rainfall. Tea plants grow at altitudes ranging from sea level to 7,000 feet and up to the 40th parallel in latitude. Tea is indigenous to the northern hemisphere (China, Tibet, and northern India), though it is cultivated in many other countries. The most complex teas grow at higher altitudes and many bushes can be cultivated for over 100 years. Tea bushes cover about six million acres of the earth's surface and are harvested weekly during the almost year-long growing season. After each winter season, the first small leaves and buds of the tea bush are hand-plucked and harvested. Once exposed to air, the leave will begin to wither. When the picked leaf becomes pliable, it can then be turned into different types of tea.