The Labrador Tea is a type of plant growing in the tundra that has its name because its leaves are brewed to make tea, which is rich in vitamin C. It is also called Marsh Tea, Swamp Tea, St. Jame’s Tea and Hudson Bay Tea.
The leaves of these plants also have little smooth firs lining there underside which provides them with insulation against the cold tundra climate.
The permafrost of the tundra planes means that the soil is very shallow. Labrador trees can easily adapt to these conditions, because they can grow in dry non-nutrient soils without much problem.
Their root system is also very shallow, allowing the plant to avoid deeper frozen soil (permafrost).
The leaves of the tree allow it to carry on with the process of photosynthesis even during cold temperatures and low sunlight.
It is also able to adapt its growth to suit the climate. During warmer times, the tree grows easily up to about 4 feet. During colder times, it adapts by growing closer to the ground, to keep itself warm, like most tundra plants.
These plants are considered evergreens because they do not shed their leaves. They keep them as it allows the plant to keep warm, while holding onto much needed moisture.
The plants’ leaves, are narrow, smooth (on top, fur at the bottom), and drooping with their edges rolled in. This mechanism helps it to retain as much moisture as possible. The dark green color attracts more sunlight and heat too.
Its reproduction is based on seeds and by rhizomes. This gives the plant added ways of multiplying.
The fruit has many tiny seeds. This increases the chances of at least a few seeds sprouting out.
The plant also has large white flowers, which serve two purposes. It attracts heat, which helps the plant grow, and it also attracts potential insects that act as pollinators to the plant.