Saffron is one of the most expensive herbs in the world which is why it's such an amazing idea to learn how to grow saffron indoors in your own home! You get to save money AND grow a beautiful, aromatic herb that can bring a little bit of magic to any dish! It may be a little hard to find saffron bulbs at your local nursery, but you should have a very easy time finding them online!
How to Grow Saffron Indoors – A Gardening Guide
- Purchase saffron bulbs from a reputable nursery or online store.
- Be sure that the bulbs are saffron cocrus and not autumn meadow crocus.
- To figure out how many corms you may need, follow this rule: three threads per person times the number of people in the family times the number of saffron dishes made per year. For example, if a family of four has saffron dishes once every two months or so, they need 24 plants.
- Generally, saffron corms should be planted in the fall, and indoors is the perfect climate for them as they do not tolerate wet soil.
- Lay 1-2 inches of fine gravel or coarse sand at the bottom of a 6 inch planter. Fill the rest of the container with rich, well draining potting soil.
- Plant the corm about 2-3 inches deep with the points facing up.
- Cover with soil and space each bulb 2-3 inches apart.
- Place the saffron cocruses in a cold room (35-48F), and make sure they get about 4-6 hours of sun a day.
- Water the bulbs lightly every other day until the grass-like foliage begins to day back. This usually happens around April.
- After that, move the container to a warmer area (50-70F).
- The flower stigmas (there should be 3 per flower) must be harvested from the blooms the same day they open.
- Snip open the flowers from their stems and tweeze the saffron threads from the bloom. Lay the thread on a paper towel to dry.
- Store the threads in an airtight container.
- To use saffron, either toast the the strands and grind them into a fine powder or infuse them in a liquid.
So now that you know how to grow saffron indoors, it's time to roll up your sleeves and get to planting!
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