A reflection of my first “tea”cher, Mack Fleming.


This blog is a dedication to one of my former instructors from Trident Technical College, Mack Fleming. Mr. Fleming passed away this morning. He leaves behind a legacy of accomplishments, from the creation of the original Charleston Tea Plantation to the countless number of students he educated and went on to be successful.

I want to take a moment and give him the praise he deserves and how he shaped my life. When Mr. Fleming returned to teaching at Trident Technical College, about every single class he would use Camellia tea as the model to explain a particular subject, situation, or fact. We also propagated Camellia sinensis, and were taught about using high humidity beds to propagate with.  I heard countless stories how how Camellia tea would take him around the world from Egypt to Republic of Georgia.

Yet, I kept all the notebooks, notes, and hand-outs. It is still some of my most prized “crap from college” I carrying around. Because every time I open it and read through it, I can still hear his voice in my head talking about the subject.

If it wasn’t for him, I can say the chances of me being involved in Camellia tea would be very low to none.

Mack always believed in US grown tea. Despite the numerous, starts and misstarts to his own tea operations after Charleston Tea Plantation, he has spawned interest in cultivation of manufacturing of tea locally.

With deep sadness, I must say my thoughts and prayers are with his family, and,”Goodbye, Sir, until I see you again, Thank You for everything!”

mack fleming

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