Saffron is an excellent spice that is used in foods for enhancing the color and aroma. Even though the spice is expensive, still people like to add it to their food. And they also show interest in knowing how it’s grown. So, the question is how to grow saffron? Let’s discuss it in detail. The bright red stigma is a part of the crocus flower. And that thread is also considered as a female portion of the flower. It usually takes several thousands of flowers to collect some grams of saffron. That makes the spice so expensive. Apart from that, the flower needs special care from the time of cultivation and till harvesting. There is no machine or automation process to harvest the spice. Highly skilled labors have to manually pluck the threads carefully by hands.
How to grow Saffron?
Iranian saffron is famous worldwide due to its origin and nativity. Iran is called as the “motherland of saffron”.
Suitable soil type and climate to grow saffron:
Well, dried soil is the best suitable soil type to grow saffron. Semi-dry soil will also be good to grow but if the wetness is high then it leads the saffron corms to get rotten or get infected. So, make sure the soil is dried. The best temperature of saffron to cultivated is 35 degrees to 40 degrees Celsius during summer. The plant itself has a quality to tolerate heat. The type of soil will also be a factor to get quality saffron. The soil of ‘Khurasan’ from the land of Iran is the best suitable soil for saffron in the world.
Planting the corms in 3 to 4 inches deep holes are well and good. Crocus plant always grows better in cluster compared to planting them in rows. Dig around 10 – 12 holes with a three-inch space between each other and place each corm in one hole.
Start watering the corms 1 – 2 times a week. And then check for the moistness in the soil. If you find waterlogged in the soil reduce the watering to one time per week. If you find the soil is completely dry then start watering 3 times a week.
Also, make sure you protect your plants from birds or rabbit’s kinds of animals.
Once the plantation is done you can find the flower from 6 – 8 weeks in time. If the land was previously cultivated saffron for 5 to 6 times, then we can expect three stigmas in each flower (it depends on Saffron scallions and age of scallions). If the saffron is cultivated for the first time in the land, then we could end up in getting 1 or 2 stigmas from a flower. The best time to harvest the stigma is on the sunny morning(mid-morning). But for the premium super negin saffron, the best time will be on early morning (before sunrise)
Carefully pluck the threads from the flower using the hands. Dry the threads at least for 2 – 3 days and then store it in an airtight container.