Each lilac-purple flower produces three red stigmas, which have been used for flavoring and coloring food since Roman times. The best time to harvest the stigmas is mid-morning on a sunny day when the flowers have fully opened and are still fresh. Carefully pluck the stigmas from the flowers with your fingers, then dry them in a warm place to preserve them for cooking. Store in a closed container.
- Best planting time is September or October depending on your zone
- Pick a spot in your garden that has well-draining soil and gets full sun.
- Plant the saffron crocus corms about 2-3” deep and 2-3” apart, placing them in the ground with their pointy ends up and the ‘hairy’ skin down.
- Water well once and wait about 6 weeks for the flowers to bloom.
- After the saffron crocuses have bloomed don’t cut off the foliage. Leave it until it’s completely withered and yellow, then remove.