Journal of Crop Science and Biotechnology

, Volume 22, Issue 5, pp 475–480 | Cite as

Strong Solar Irradiance Reduces Growth and Alters Catechins Concentration in Tea Plants over Winter

  • Ki Eun Song
  • Seung Ho Jeon
  • Doo Bo Shim
  • Woo Jin Jun
  • Jin Woong Chung
  • Sangin ShimEmail author
Research Article


An experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of sunlight and chilling on growth, photosynthesis and chemical composition of tea plants growing in South Korea. The plants were grown in full sun (mid-day photosynthetic photon flux density, PPFD of 563 μmol-2s-1), slight shade (PPFD of 99 μmol-2s-1) or heavy shade (HS, PPFD of 5 μmol-2s-1) in a field at the foot of pine forest from October to March, 2012. Mean and minimum daily temperature fell below 0 °C in December and January. Shading had a small or no effect on shoot and leaf growth. Shading increased the concentration of chlorophyll compared with plants in full sun, with relatively stable values within a treatment over time. Shading increased chlorophyll fluorescence, with lower values in all treatments in late January. The concentration of total catechins was lower under shading, and lower in early January. Low temperatures appear to decrease chlorophyll fluorescence independently of light levels. Growth under heavy shade was dependently of stored reserves and would be unsustainable over the long term. Overall quality as reflected by the concentration of catechins was best under full sun conditions.

Key words

Camellia sinensis antioxidant low temperature light intensity shading 


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This research was supported by the Ministry of Environment of Korea (“Eco-STAR Project” Project number 2014000 130006).


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Copyright information

© Korean Society of Crop Science and Springer 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ki Eun Song
    • 1
  • Seung Ho Jeon
    • 2
  • Doo Bo Shim
    • 3
  • Woo Jin Jun
    • 4
  • Jin Woong Chung
    • 5
  • Sangin Shim
    • 6
    Email author
  1. 1.Division of Applied Life Science (Brain Korea 21 program)Gyeongsang National UniversityJinjuSouth Korea
  2. 2.Department of Well-being ResourcesSunchon National UniversitySunchonSouth Korea
  3. 3.Institute of Hadong Green TeaHadong-gunSouth Korea
  4. 4.Department of Food and NutritionChonnam National UniversityGwangjuSouth Korea
  5. 5.Department of Biological ScienceDong-A UniversityBusanSouth Korea
  6. 6.Institute of Life SciencesGyeongsang National UniversityJinjuSouth Korea

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