Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world and is obtained from the dried stigmata of the plant “Crocus sativus”. Saffron is popularly known as “red gold”. Simple and accessible to anyone Saffron can be grown anywhere in the world
And how easy and accessible it is to grow it, the saffron plant is a bulbous, perennial with spherical worms, 15 to 20 cm in height. The plant is native to Europe and is grown in Mediterranean countries such as Spain, Austria, France, Greece, England, Iran and Turkey. Saffron cultivation in India is mainly done in Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. Saffron is also grown a lot for business.
Uses and Benefits of Saffron
Uses and benefits of Saffron:- Saffron is mainly used to season cooking and to colour cheese, biryani, meats, wine, cordial, cakes, confectionery, bread and Mughlai dishes. Saffron is used commercially in perfumes and cosmetics. When it comes to medicinal uses,
So saffron is used in Ayurvedic remedies to cure fever, rheumatism, impotence and infertility. In India, people believe that taking saffron (Kesar) with milk during pregnancy is good for childbirth.
The Major Production States in India
The Major Production States in India:- Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh.
Local names of saffron in India
Saffron Local Names in India:- Kesar (Hindi), Kong (Kashmiri), Jafran (Bengali), Keshar, Kesar (Marathi), Kesar (Gujarati), Kumkum Kesari (Kannada), Kumkum Puvu (Telugu), Kungumpu (Tamil), Kumkumpuve (Malayalam), Kesar, Zaffran (Punjabi), Zaffran (Urdu), Keshara, Kumkum, Asrika, Aruna, Asra (Sanskrit).
Requirement of soil and climate for the cultivation of saffron
Soil and Climate Requirement for Saffron Farming:- The type of soil grown in saffron cultivation is more important than the climate of the region. Saffron thrives best in warm subtropical climates and can be grown at 2000 m above sea level. An optimum period of sunlight of 12 hours is desirable. Low temperatures coupled with high humidity during the flowering season affect the flowering of the saffron crop and spring rains promote the production of new insects when it comes to soil,
So saffron grows well in acidic to neutral, gravel, loamy and sandy soils. It requires soil with good drainage and optimum soil pH for saffron cultivation is 6 to 8 pH and heavy soils should be avoided as these soils are not suitable.
Saffron seed planting time / Saffron sowing time
The right time for planting saffron seeds is suitable between July to August.
Saffron Seeds Saffron Bulbs
Saffron seeds are in the shape of garlic, which lasts for many years, saffron seeds are called bulbs, after planting saffron seeds once in the field, after taking one crop, the same saffron bulb is also used in the next crop. The average price of a bulb of saffron can range from ₹7 to ₹25.
Improved varieties of saffron
- mogra saffron
- American saffron
How to prepare the land for Saffron Crop?
Preparation of land for saffron Crop:- Plow the field well before sowing or planting saffron seeds and before the last ploughing, 20 tonnes of cow dung along with 90 kg nitrogen, 60 kg phosphorus and potas per hectare should be well plowed in your field. By doing this, your land will remain fertile and friable and the saffron crop will be good to a great extent.
Saffron crop planting time, rate and method
The right time to plant the saffron crop is from July to August, but mid-July is the best time while planting saffron crops, keep in mind that to plant the croms, make a pit of 6 – 7 cm, and the distance between the two corms is approx. Keep 10 cm. This will allow the croms to flourish and pollen will also come out in good quantity.
Irrigation for saffron cultivation
Irrigation for the saffron crop:-10 cm rainfall is required for the cultivation of saffron. There is no need to irrigate the field after a few days of sowing if there is light rain. But if there is no rain then we have to irrigate 2 to 3 times at an interval of 15 days. During irrigation, care should be taken that there is no stagnation of water anywhere in the field and arrangement for drainage should be made immediately after the water has accumulated. This will not affect the crop.
Fertilizers in Saffron Farming Saffron Farming Business English
Fertilizers in Saffron Farming:- Farmers apply about 35 tonnes of well-decomposed cow dung in the field before planting. Annual fertilizer application of 20 kg ‘N’, 30 kg ‘K’ and 80 kg ‘P’ per hectare is beneficial in autumn and again immediately after flowering.
Pests and diseases in saffron cultivation
Pests and Diseases in Saffron Farming:- The three main diseases found in saffron cultivation are Fusarium, Rhizoctonia coco rum and Violet root rot Contact the local horticulture department for control measures. Rabbits love saffron leaves and there should be a secure fence to protect the crop from predators.
Harvesting in Saffron Farming: Saffron Farming Business
Harvesting in Saffron Farming:- In saffron cultivation, flowering starts in the month of October and lasts for a month. Harvesting should be done when the flowers are in full bloom and picked up early in the morning. After harvesting the flowers, take out the red coloured pistils from the flowers.
Saffron crop drying
Filaments can be dried by placing the sieve on a sieve in a well-ventilated place between 45°C to 60°C for 15 minutes (well-ventilated food dryer, oven door slightly open, outside under sun). Generally, fresh saffron has no taste and it is recommended that dried saffron should be stored away from light in an airtight container for at least 1 month before consumption.
Yield in saffron cultivation
Generally, 150 to 160 saffron flowers are required to make 1 gram of dry saffron. Typically, during the first year of planting, 60 to 65% of corms will produce 1 flower each and in subsequent years, each corm will produce about 2 flowers.
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