Why the saffron harvesting process is important and why we should be precise about it? when saffron threads have water and don’t dry, their quality get decreases to step by step, and if we don’t be fast, our product quality drops.
We should predict how many workers and resources we need for saffron harvesting time and if we have a mistake in this process, our investment will be in danger. Also, we should provide an appropriate condition for cleaning saffron flowers after harvesting them.
These 2 steps of saffron planting steps are so important and we should be serious and alert about them. Sometimes we can increase our income to 3 times or even destroy our product and investment in a moment. This is us and our important mission.
Saffron Harvesting Time
Saffron harvesting time is in the middle of fall, the exact time of saffron harvesting depends on the climate and weather temperature. We need the low temperature to start the saffron bulb’s growth phase and any delay in a decrease of weather temperature can affect saffron flowering.
Specifically, the decrease in temperature and water are essential things for starting the growth phase. We should do saffron irrigation on the first of fall to provide one of the necessary conditions. Decrease of weather temperature is out of our access and we can just wait.
20-30 days after providing this condition saffron bulbs starts flowering and we can start the harvesting process. If you are living in the hot areas you can harvest flowers in September and if you are living in the cold areas your flowers rise in August.
We need 2 to 5 days with under zero temperature for starting saffron flowering. Of course, if you can’t provide this condition, you can try greenhouse saffron cultivation. We can control the environmental condition such as weather temperature in the greenhouse and this can increase our efficiency.
How Often Does Saffron Bloom?
Crocus Sativus or saffron species only bloom one time and in the fall. Of course, may there be some methods in the greenhouse that prepare conditions for blooming saffron flowers more than usual.
Also, may we see some of the other crocus species that bloom in other months of the year, but they can’t produce saffron for us.
Saffron Harvesting Methods
The harvesting saffron process takes a long about 10days and we should predict and provide our essential instrument. This completely depends on our farm’s scale, if we have a big saffron farm, we should prepare saffron harvesting machines otherwise we can use the traditional method.
The golden time for the harvest of any saffron flower is 4-5 hours and if we can’t harvest flowers in this time zone, our product quality gets decreases and probably we missed our products and this is why we use saffron harvesting machines for harvesting saffron in big farms.
The second method is traditional saffron harvesting that is done by hand and has high efficiency in small farms. In other words, if you have a saffron farm that is 2 or 4 thousand meters, you can harvest your farms by this method.
1. Saffron Harvesting Machine
There are lots of saffron harvesting machines in the market and you can buy and use them. Of course, you should consider some points, first, if you don’t have a serious program for expanding your farms you don’t need these machines and it’s better to harvest your farm by traditional method.
Second, the best way to buy saffron cultivation tools is to buy them jointly. You just need this machine for 10 days and after that, you can give it to another farmer. Also, if you have a specialty, you can build it your own and this will not be a problem for a technical person.
You can see in the below video a hand-made saffron harvesting machine.
2. The Traditional Saffron Harvesting
This method is suitable for small saffron farms. in this method, we should be present on-farm at early of the day (about 6-8 am) and start the harvesting flowers. Every worker can harvest 5-6 kg saffron flowers per complete day. For example, if you have a 2000 meters farm you will need 4-5 workers for harvesting saffron.
You can use your family people help and do the harvesting process in the first and second years, but after that and in the third and fourth years, you will need the help of other people to harvest the farm. The reason is that a saffron farm arrives in its highest productivity in the third and fourth years.
If you are growing saffron in your garden or your home you don’t need any workers and you can harvest your saffron on your own.
What Should We Do After Harvesting Saffron?
We should start cleaning flowers instantly after harvesting them. We should collect the whole of the flowers during the day and then clean them the last of the day or night of the same day. Whatever we will be fast, our products will have higher quality.
The saffron cleaning place should be bright and disinfected. in this step, we can determine our product type, in other words, the first step of producing a special type of saffron is in this step. We can produce Negin saffron or any other type of this spice.
The different types of saffron have different prices in the market and if we can produce Super Negin, we can sell it at the highest price in the market.