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Masu (麻粟)

Masu is a village in the mountains above Tongmu. It is known for producing excellent black tea, some of which is featured in our shop. Looking at a satellite image (Masu on Google Maps), you might think that there is no tea grown here at all, as the familiar images of rows of tea are nowhere to be found. Unlike the majority of Wuyishan, the tea grown in Masu is not cloned bushes or kept in neat rows. The trees are all "xiao zhong", small leaf variety, and propagated by seed. The trees are allowed to grow fairly wild in natural gardens.

Looking north-east across the valley from the south-west side where the road in is. This is a place where you intuitively understand why people live here. Some flat land, beautiful mountains, and ready water source.
After arriving, we tried some tea before taking a look around.
Looking south across the valley from the north side. The majority of the valley is covered in tea trees. This is no normal low land valley tea - this valley floor is over 1200 meters in altitude.
A very classic styled house, surrounded by tea fields with Chinese redwood behind.
A closer look at the field in front of the house. Some of these trees a quite old. The field is rocky and weeds are cut by hand.

In addition to tea farming, beekeeping is a popular and complementary activity. What I find interesting is that the tea and honey from the same fields have some of the same fragrance. Trying some is a nice way to help separate the fragrance of the place.

Opening up a beehive in Masu. This one is right outside the house in the other photos.
My first taste of fresh honey in Masu.
A hive.