An Expensive Spice Saffron (Crocus sativus L.): A Case Study from Kashmir, Iran, and Turkey

  • Muhammad Kafi
  • Azra N. Kamili
  • Amjad M. Husaini
  • Munir Ozturk
  • Volkan Altay


Saffron, originating from the Arabic word “Zafaran” meaning yellow, is a fascinating spice steeped in rich history. Its secrets stem from the dried red stigmas, which accumulate large amounts of three glucosylated apocarotenoids, namely crocin, picrocrocin, and safranal, which, among the more than 150 volatile and aroma yielding compounds, contribute to the color, bitter flavor, and aroma so typical of saffron. It is reported to have antidepressant, hypnotic, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, bronchodilatory, aphrodisiac, inducer of labor, emmenagogue, and several other uses. Owing to extremely high demand from the dye, perfumery, and flavoring industries, it is one of the most expensive spices on earth. The components of the spice “saffron” are localized in the red stigmatic lobes of C. sativus flower and these are responsible for its distinct color, flavor, and smell. In this chapter the history of saffron, its economic importance, its pharmacological activities, cultivated area, production, as well as other uses are discussed. Further, we highlight the practices followed in saffron cultivation and discuss various issues connected with its production.


Saffron Crocus sativus Spice Turkey Iran Kashmir Cultivation Production 


  1. Abbasi MA (1997) Effects of herbicides on saffron weeds. M.Sc thesis, Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, IranGoogle Scholar
  2. Abdullaev FI (2002) Cancer chemopreventive and tumoricidal properties of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) Exp Biol Med 227(1):20–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Abdullaev FI, Espinosa-Aguirre JJ (2004) Biomedical properties of saffron and its potential use in cancer therapy and chemoprevention trials. Cancer Detect Prev 28(6):426–432PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Abrishami MH (1988) Saffron of Iran. Toosi Publishing Company, TehranGoogle Scholar
  5. Abrishami MH (1997) Iranian saffron: historic, cultural and agronomic prospects. Astan Ghods Razavi Publishing Co., Mashhad. (Persian)Google Scholar
  6. Aga FA, Wani GA, Khanday BA, Wani SA (2008) Irrigation management in saffron (Crocus sativus L.) In: Nehvi FA, Wani SA (eds) Saffron production in Jammu and Kashmir. Directorate of Extension Education, SKUAST-K, Srinagar, pp 201–208Google Scholar
  7. Agricultural Research, Education and Extension Organization of Iran (1997) Evaluation of economic and technical aspect of saffron production in IranGoogle Scholar
  8. Ahmad M, Zaffar G, Habib M, Arshid A, Dar NA, Dar ZA (2014) Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) in the light of biotechnological approaches: a review. Sci Res Essays 9(2):13–18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Ahrazem O, Rubio-Moraga A, Castillo-López R, Trapero Mozos A, Gómez-Gómez L (2010) Crocus sativus pathogens and defence responses. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/Japan, pp 81–90Google Scholar
  10. Ahrazem O, Rubio-Moraga A, Nebauer SG, Molina RV, Gómez-Gómez L (2015) Saffron: its phytochemistry, developmental processes, and biotechnological prospects. J Agric Food Chem 63(40):8751–8764PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Ahuja A, Koul S, Ram G, Kaul BL (1994) Somatic embryogenesis and regeneration of plantlets in satiron. Indian J Exp Biol 32:135–140Google Scholar
  12. Ait-Oubahou A, El-Otmani M (1999) Saffron cultivation in Morocco. In: Negbi M (ed) Saffron: Crocus sativus L. Harwood Academic Publications, Amsterdam, pp 87–94Google Scholar
  13. Alam A (2007) Status and prospects of mechanisation in saffron cultivation in Kashmir. Acta Hortic 739:383–388CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Alavi-Kia SS, Mohammadi SA, Aharizad S, Moghaddam M (2008) Analysis of genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationships in Crocus genus of Iran using inter-retrotransposon amplified polymorphism. Biotechnol Biotechnol Equip 22(3):795–800CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Alavi Shahri H (1996) Effects of rate of irrigation and animal manure on saffron yield. J Plant Soil 11:5Google Scholar
  16. Alavi Shahri H, Mahajeri M, Falaki MA (1995) Effects of plant density on saffron yield. Abstracts of the second national symposium on saffron and medicinal plants, 8–9 November 1994, Gonabad, IranGoogle Scholar
  17. Alizadeh A (2001) Potential evapo-transpiration of cumin and saffron. Project report. National Meteorological Organization, Tehran. [in Persian]Google Scholar
  18. Alsayied NF, Fernández JA, Schwarzacher T, Heslop-Harrison JS (2015) Diversity and relationships of Crocus sativus and its relatives analysed by inter-retroelement amplified polymorphism (IRAP). Ann Bot 116(3):359–368PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Amirghasemi T (2002) Saffron, red gold of Iran. Azadeghan Publishing CompanyGoogle Scholar
  20. Arslan N, Özer AS, Akdemir R (2007) Cultivation of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) and effects of organic fertilizers to the flower yield. I. In: International medicinal and aromatic plants conference on culinary herbs vol 826, pp 237–240Google Scholar
  21. Azizi Zehan A (2001) Saffron water requirements, methods of irrigation and irrigation intervals. M.Sc. thesis, Faculty of Agriculture, Shiraz University, IranGoogle Scholar
  22. Baba SA, Mohiuddin T, Basu S, Swarnkar MK, Malik AH, Wani ZA, Singh AK, Ashraf N (2015) Comprehensive transcriptome analysis of Crocus sativus for discovery and expression of genes involved in apocarotenoid biosynthesis. BMC Genomics 16(1):698PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Bakshi H, Sam S, Rozati R, Sultan P, Islam T, Rathore B et al (2010) DNA fragmentation and cell cycle arrest: a hallmark of apoptosis induced by crocin from kashmiri saffron in a human pancreatic cancer cell line. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev 11(3):675–679PubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. Barshad I, Halevy E, Gold HA, Hagin J (1956) Clay minerals in some limestone soils from Israel. Soil Sci 81(6):423–438CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Bathaie SZ, Mousavi SZ (2010) New applications and mechanisms of action of saffron and its important ingredients. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr 50(8):761–786PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Behnia MR (1992) Saffron cultivation. University Press, TehranGoogle Scholar
  27. Behnia MR (1995) Effects of animal manure and chemical fertilizers on yield of saffron. Abstracts of the second national symposium on saffron and medicinal plants, 8–9 November 1994, Gonabad, IranGoogle Scholar
  28. Bhandari PR (2015) Crocus sativus L. (saffron) for cancer chemoprevention: a mini review. J Tradit Complement Med 5(2):81–87PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Biswas NR, Patta SP, Raychaudhuri, Dakshinamurti C (1975) Soil condition for the growth of saffron of pampoye (Kashmir). Indian J Agric Sci 27(4):413–418Google Scholar
  30. Boskabady MH, Farkhondeh T (2016) Antiinflammatory, antioxidant, and immunomodulatory effects of Crocus sativus L. and its main constituents. Phytother Res 30(7):1072–1094PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Botsoglou E, Govaris A, Giannenas I, Botsoglou N (2010) Use of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) as a feed additive for improving growth and meat or egg quality in poultry. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 98–107Google Scholar
  32. Bukhari SI, Pattnaik B, Rayees S, Kaul S, Dhar MK (2015) Safranal of Crocus sativus L. inhibits inducible nitric oxide synthase and attenuates asthma in a mouse model of asthma. Phytother Res 29(4):617–627PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Caiola MG, Canini A (2010) Looking for Saffron’s (Crocus sativus L.) parents. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 1–14Google Scholar
  34. Chichiriccò G (1996) Intra-and interspecific reproductive barriers in Crocus (Iridaceae). Plant Syst Evol 201(1):83–92CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Christodoulou E, Kadoglou NP, Kostomitsopoulos N, Valsami G (2015) Saffron: a natural product with potential pharmaceutical applications. J Pharm Pharmacol 67(12):1634–1649PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Çavuşoğlu A (2010) The effects of cold storage of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) corms on morphology, stigma and corm yield. Afr J Agric Res 5(14):1812–1820Google Scholar
  37. Çavuşoğlu A, Erkel Eİ (2009) Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) growing without removing of mother corms under greenhouse condition. Turk J Field Crops 14(2):170–180Google Scholar
  38. Davis, P.H., Mill, R., Tan, K. 1988. Flora of Turkey and the East Aegean IslandsVol. 10 (Supp. 1) Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, 278 pp.Google Scholar
  39. Devi K, Sharma M, Ahuja PS (2014) Direct somatic embryogenesis with high frequency plantlet regeneration and successive cormlet production in saffron (Crocus sativus L.) S Afr J Bot 93:207–216CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Duke JA (1987) Handbook of medicinal herbs. CRC Press, Boca Raton, pp 148–149Google Scholar
  41. Eftekharzadeh Marghi MS (1997) Evaluation of the effects of irrigation intervals and rate of N-fertilizer on flower production in saffron. Abstracts of 4th Iranian crop science congress, Isfahan, IranGoogle Scholar
  42. Erol O, Kaya HB, Şık L, Tuna M, Can L, Tanyolac MB (2014) The genus Crocus, series Crocus (Iridaceae) in Turkey and 2 east Aegean islands: a genetic approach. Turk J Biol 38(1):48–62CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Escribano J, Díaz-Guerra MJ, Riese HH, Alvarez A, Proenza R, Fernández JA (2000) The cytolytic effect of a glycoconjugate extracted from corms of saffron plant (Crocus sativus) on human cell lines in culture. Planta Med 66(2):157–162PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Farokhnia M, Shafiee Sabet M, Iranpour N, Gougol A, Yekehtaz H, Alimardani R et al (2014) Comparing the efficacy and safety of Crocus sativus L. with memantine in patients with moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease: a double-blind randomized clinical trial. Hum Psychopharmacol Clin Exp 29(4):351–359CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Fernández JA (2006) Genetic resources of saffron and allies (Crocus spp.). II. In: International symposium on saffron biology and technology, vol 739, pp 167–185Google Scholar
  46. Fiore A, Pizzichini D, Diretto G, Scossa F, Spanò L (2010) Genomics and transcriptomics of saffron: new tools to unravel the secrets of an attractive spice. In: Husaini AM (ed), Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 25–30Google Scholar
  47. Ghahraman A (1995) Plant systematic, cormophytes of Iran. Volume 4: second printing. Iran University PressGoogle Scholar
  48. Ghalavand A, Abdulahian M (1995) Effects of plant spacing and methods of planting on saffron. Abstracts of the second national symposium on saffron and medicinal plants, 8–9 November 1994, Gonabad, IranGoogle Scholar
  49. Gharaii HA, Beygi M (1991) Evaluation of physicochemical and mineralogy of soils in saffron growing areas of Estahban. Scientific and Research Organization of Iran Shiraz Institute, Annual reportGoogle Scholar
  50. Gharaii HA, Rezaii AR (1993) Effect of saffron cultivation on trace elements of soil in Estahban. Scientific and Research Organization of Iran, Shiraz Institute, Annual reportGoogle Scholar
  51. Ghoddusi H, Koocheki A, Varidi M, Bolandi M (2004) Seventy years of research on saffron (Crocus sativus L.) in Iran: a review. Iran J Field Crop Res 1(2):217–247Google Scholar
  52. Gomez-Gomez L, Rubio-Moraga A, Ahrazem A (2010a) Understanding carotenoid metabolism in saffron stigmas: unravelling aroma and colour formation. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 56–63Google Scholar
  53. Gomez-Gomez L, Feo-Brito F, Rubio-Moraga A, Trapero-Mozos A, Prieto A, Salcedo G, Ahrazem O (2010b) Saffron and other spices as potential allergenic sources. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 74–80Google Scholar
  54. Habibi MB, Bagheri A (1989) Saffron: cultivation, processing, chemical composition and standards. Iranian Scientific and Industrial Research Organization Khorasan Center (Technical report in Persian)Google Scholar
  55. Hassan B, Shah MH (2001) Increased sustainability and yield of saffron in Kashmir. In: Proceedings of seminar-cum-workshop on saffron (Crocus sativus), June 14, 2001, SKUAST-K, India, pp 55–58Google Scholar
  56. Haun JR (1973) Quantitative wheat growth stages. Agron J 65:116–119CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Hemmati Khakhki A (2001) Effects of different methods of drying in preserving saffron quality. Res Construct Nat Resour 14(2):32–35Google Scholar
  58. Hosseinzadeh H, Nassiri-Asl M (2013) Avicenna's (ibn Sina) the canon of medicine and saffron (Crocus sativus): a review. Phytother Res 27(4):475–483PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Housini M (1998) Effect of nutrient foliar application on yield of saffron. Iranian Scientific and Industrial Research Organization-Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  60. Husaini AM (2010) Saffron foreword. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, p viGoogle Scholar
  61. Husaini AM (2014) Challenges of climate change: omics-based biology of saffron plants and organic agricultural biotechnology for sustainable saffron production. GM Crops and Food 5:97–105CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Husaini AM, Ashraf N (2010) Understanding saffron biology using bioinformatics tools. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 31–37Google Scholar
  63. Husaini AM, Wani SA, Sofi P, Rather AG, Mir JI (2009) Bioinformatics for saffron (Crocus sativus L.) improvement. Commun Biometry Crop Sci 4(1):1–6Google Scholar
  64. Husaini AM, Hassan B, Ghani MY, Teixeira da Silva JA, Kirmani NA (2010a) Saffron (Crocus sativus Kashmirianus) cultivation in Kashmir: practices and problems. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 108–115Google Scholar
  65. Husaini AM, Kamili AN, Wani MH, Teixeira da Silva JA, Bhat GN (2010b) Sustainable saffron (Crocus sativus Kashmirianus) production: technological and policy interventions for Kashmir. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 116–127Google Scholar
  66. Ingram JS (1984) Saffron (Crous sativus L.) Trop Sci 11:1771–1774Google Scholar
  67. International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 3632-1 1993 (E). Saffron (Crocus sativus L.)-specification. Geneva, SwitzerlandGoogle Scholar
  68. International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 3632-2 (1993) (E). Saffron (Crocussativus L.)- test methods. Geneva, SwitzerlandGoogle Scholar
  69. Iranian standard and Industrial Research Organization (2003) Regulation for establishment of HACCP from harvesting to packing. National Iranian Standard (Persian)Google Scholar
  70. Jafar Pour B (1988) An introductory investigation on saffron diseases. Iranian Industrial and Scientific Research Organization, Khorasan Center (technical report)Google Scholar
  71. Jain M, Srivastava PL, Verma M, Ghangal R, Garg R (2016) De novo transcriptome assembly and comprehensive expression profiling in Crocus sativus to gain insights into apocarotenoid biosynthesis. Sci Rep 6:22456PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Javanmard S, Ahmadian G, Malbosi Sh, Dashtiani D (2002) Evaluation of risk for saffron production in South Khorasan. First Saffron Festival, 2–3 December 2002, Ghaen, IranGoogle Scholar
  73. Kafi M (ed) (2006) Saffron (Crocus sativus): production and processing. Science Publishers, New Hampshire, p 244Google Scholar
  74. Kafi M, Showket T (2007) A comparative study of saffron agronomy and production systems of Khorasan (Iran) and Kashmir (India). Acta Hortic (739):123–132Google Scholar
  75. Kaith DS, Sharma PP (1983) Saffron-research in Himachal Pradesh-retrospect and prospect [India]. Indian Cocoa Arecanut Spices J (India) 7(1):5Google Scholar
  76. Kamili AS, Nehvi FA (2005) Low cost solar drier in saffron—a report. Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir, India, 9 ppGoogle Scholar
  77. Khakhki H, Rahimi SK (1994) Searching and extracting antocyanin from saffron petals and study of its stability in a model drink. Scientific & Industrial Research Organization and Iranian Nutrition & Food Industry Research Institute (Persian)Google Scholar
  78. Khorasan Jehad e Keshvarzi Organization (2012) Statistics and Information CenterGoogle Scholar
  79. Kianmehr H (1994) Endotrophic micorehyza of saffron in Khorasan and its possible application. In: Proceeding of the second national symposium on saffron and medicinal plants, 8–9 November 1994, Gonabad, IranGoogle Scholar
  80. Komarov VL (1968) Flora of the U.S.S.R. Vol. IV: Printed in Jerusalem by IPST Press, pp 380–390Google Scholar
  81. Koocheki A, Alizadeh A, Ganjali A (2010) The effect of increased temperature on flowering behaviour of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) Iran J Field Crop Res 8(2):324–335Google Scholar
  82. Koocheki A, Siamargouyie A, Azizi K, Jahani M (2011) The effect of high density and depth of planting on agronomic characteristic of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) and corms behavior. Agric Ecology 3(1):36–49Google Scholar
  83. Licón C, Carmona M, Llorens S, Berruga MI, Alonso GL (2010) Potential healthy effects of saffron spice (Crocus sativus L. stigmas) consumption. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 64–73Google Scholar
  84. Lopresti AL, Drummond PD (2014) Saffron (Crocus sativus) for depression: a systematic review of clinical studies and examination of underlying antidepressant mechanisms of action. Hum Psychopharmacol Clin Exp 29(6):517–527CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  85. Madan CL, Kapar BM, Gupta US (1966) Saffron. Econ Bot 4(20)Google Scholar
  86. Maggi L, Carmona M, Sanchez AM, Alonso GL (2010) Saffron flavor: compounds involved, biogenesis and human perception. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 45–55Google Scholar
  87. Mahdavi M (1999) Crop coefficient and evapo-transpiration of saffron under standard conditions. MSc. thesis, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, IranGoogle Scholar
  88. Mashayekhi K, Lotfi N (1998) Effects of corm size on saffron flower production. J Agric Sci 28(1):25Google Scholar
  89. Mashmoul M, Azlan A, Khaza’ai H, Yusof BNM, Noor SM (2013) Saffron: a natural potent antioxidant as a promising anti-obesity drug. Antioxidants 2(4):293–308PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  90. Mathew B (1977) Crocus turcicus. Pl Syst Evol Austria 129:98Google Scholar
  91. Mathew B (1982) The Crocus. A revision of the genus Crocus (Iridaceae). B.T. Batsford, LondonGoogle Scholar
  92. Mathew B (1984) Crocus. In: Davis PH (ed) Flora of Turkey and the East Aegean Islands, vol 8. Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, pp 413–438Google Scholar
  93. Mathew B (1999) Botany, taxonomy and cytology of Crocus sativus L. and its allies. In: Saffron: Crocus sativus. Harwood Academic Publisher, Amsterdam, pp 19–30Google Scholar
  94. Mathew B, Baytop T (1976) Some observations on Turkish Crocus. Notes Roy Bot Gard Edinburgh 35(1):61–67Google Scholar
  95. Mathew B, Brighton CA (1977) Four central Asian species (Liliaceae). The Iranian. J Bot 1(2):123–135Google Scholar
  96. Mathew B, Petersen G, Seberg O (2009) A reassessment of Crocus based on molecular analysis. Plantsman 8(1):50–57Google Scholar
  97. Mehri A, Kahi MR (2003) Design of a machine for separation of stigma from flower. Technical report. Engineering Research Center of Jehad Keshavarzi, KhorasanGoogle Scholar
  98. Melnyk JP, Wang S, Marcone MF (2010) Chemical and biological properties of the world’s most expensive spice: saffron. Food Res Int 43(8):1981–1989CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  99. Milyaeva EL, Azizbekova NS (1978) Cytophysiological changes in the course of development of stem apices of saffron crocus. Soviet. Plant Physiol 25:227–233Google Scholar
  100. Mir GM (1992) Saffron agronomy in Kashmir. Gulshan Publishers, Srinagar, p 163Google Scholar
  101. Mohammadabadi A, Rezvani Moghaddam P, Fallahi J (2011) Effects of planting pattern and the first irrigation date on growth and yield of saffron (Crocus sativus). Agroecology 3(1):83–93Google Scholar
  102. Mohammadi F (1997) Economic evaluation of production and export situation of saffron and cumin. Agricultural Economics and Development CongressGoogle Scholar
  103. Molaphilabi A (2001) Production management in saffron. Technical report. Iranian Industrial and Scientific Research Organization—Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  104. Moraga AR, Castillo R, Gómez-Gómez L, Ahrazem O (2009) Saffron is a monomorphic species as revealed by RAPD, ISSR and microsatellite analyses. BMC Res Notes 2:189CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  105. Moraga AR, Trapero-Mozos A, Gómez-Gómez L, Ahrazem O (2010) Intersimple sequence repeat markers for molecular characterization of Crocus cartwrightianus cv. Albus. Ind Crop Prod 32:147–151CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  106. Mosaferi Ziaedini H (2001) Effects of different irrigation regimes on saffron yield. MSc. thesis, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, IranGoogle Scholar
  107. Munshi AM, Wani SA, Tak GM (2001) Improved cultivation practices for saffron. In: Proceedings of seminar-cum-workshop on saffron (Crocus sativus), June 14, 2001, SKUAST-K, India, pp 83–88Google Scholar
  108. Nair SC, Pannikar B, Panikkar KR (1991) Antitumour activity of saffron (Crocus sativus). Cancer Lett 57(2):109–114PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  109. Negbi M (1999) Saffron (Crocus sativus L.). Harwood Academic Publishers, AmsterdamGoogle Scholar
  110. Nehvi FA (2004) Success stories of saffron research under temperate conditions of Kashmir. National Agricultural Technology Project (NATP) report, SKUAST-K, India, pp 28Google Scholar
  111. Nehvi FA, Mi M (2007) Importance of irrigation in saffron production. Indian Farming 59:15–16Google Scholar
  112. Nehvi FA, Ghani MY, Dar SA, Allaie BA (2008) Saffron production technology. In: Nehvi FA, Wani SA (eds) Saffron production in Jammu and Kashmir. Directorate of Extension Education. SKUAST-K, India, pp 114–141Google Scholar
  113. Husaini AM, Bhat MA, Kamili AN, Mir MA (2013) Kashmir saffron in crisis. Curr Sci 104(6):686–687Google Scholar
  114. Parray JA, Kamili AN, Hamid R, Husaini AM (2012) In vitro cormlet production of saffron (Crocus sativus L. Kashmirianus) and their flowering response under greenhouse. GM Crops Food 3(4):289–295PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  115. Pir FA, Nehvi FA, Singh KN, Hassan B, Khanday BA, Mir ZA (2008) Saffron weed flora of Kashmir. In: Nehvi FA, Wani SA (eds) Saffron production in Jammu and Kashmir. Directorate of Extension Education. SKUAST-K, India, pp 189–200Google Scholar
  116. Pitsikas N (2015) The effect of Crocus sativus L. and its constituents on memory: basic studies and clinical applications. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2015:1–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  117. Plessner O, Ziv M, Negbi M (1990) In vitro corm production in the saffron crocus (Crocus sativus L.) Plant Cell Tissue Organ Cult 20(2):89–94CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  118. Poglini M, Groose FD (1971) Stadi cariologico di Crocus sativus. Inf Bot Ital 4:25–29Google Scholar
  119. Premkumar K, Ramesh A (2010) Anticancer, antimutagenic and antioxidant potential of saffron: an overview of current awareness and future perspectives. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 91–97Google Scholar
  120. Quadri RR, Kamili AN, Husaini AM, Shah AM, da Silva Teixeira JA (2010) In vitro studies on cormogenesis and maximization of corm size in saffron. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 132–135Google Scholar
  121. Raghimi GH (1991) Machinery for saffron production. Technical report. Faculty of Agriculture, Birjand UniversityGoogle Scholar
  122. Rahimi H (2003) Identification and introducing insect pest and their natural enemies in saffron plantations of southern Khorasan areas. Khorasan Agricultural Research Center Publications, MashhadGoogle Scholar
  123. Rahimi A, Rezaee MB, Jaimand K, Ashtiany AN (2013) The effects of storage and cultivation condition on crocin content of dried stigma in saffron (Crocus sativus L.) Pure Appl Biol 2(4):122–125CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  124. Raina BL, Agarwal SG, Bhatia AK, Gaur GS (1996) Changes in pigments and volatiles of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) during processing and storage. J Sci Food Agric 71(1):27–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  125. Rashed Mohasel MH (1990) Reports of visit of scientific delegates to Spain on saffron Iranian Scientific and Industrial Research Organization-Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  126. Rashed-Mohassel MH (1993) Weeds of south Khorasan saffron fields. J Agric Sci Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, IranGoogle Scholar
  127. Rashed Mohasel MH, Bagheri AR, Sadeghi M, Hemmati A (1989) Report of mission for Spanish saffron. Scientific and Industrial Research Organization of Iran, Khoran CenterGoogle Scholar
  128. Razavi BM, Hosseinzadeh H (2017) Saffron: a promising natural medicine in the treatment of metabolic syndrome. J Sci Food Agric 97(6):1679–1685PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  129. Renau-Morata B, Moyá L, Nebauer SG, Seguí-Simarro JM, Parra-Vega V, Gómez MD, Molina RV (2013) The use of corms produced under storage at low temperatures as a source of explants for the in vitro propagation of saffron reduces contamination levels and increases multiplication rates. Ind Crop Prod 46:97–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  130. Reres Bueno MP (1989) Elzafran. Ediciones, Mondi PrensaGoogle Scholar
  131. Rezaee R, Hosseinzadeh H (2013) Safranal: from an aromatic natural product to a rewarding pharmacological agent. Iran J Basic Med Sci 16(1):12–26PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  132. Sabet TM, Kafi M, Avarsaji Z, Orooji K (2010) Effect of drought stress, corm size and corm tunic on morphoecophysiological characteristics of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) in greenhouse conditions. Agroecology 2(2):323–334Google Scholar
  133. Sadeghi B (1983) Effects of corm weight on flower initiation of saffron. Scientific and Research Organization of Iran. Khorasan Institute, Annual reportGoogle Scholar
  134. Sadeghi B (1988) Effects of nutrients on saffron production. Technical report. Khorasan Agricultural Resarch CenterGoogle Scholar
  135. Sadeghi B (1989) Effects of chemical fertilizer, and animal manure on corm, leaf and saffron yield. Annual report. Scientific and Research Organization of Iran. Khorasan InstituteGoogle Scholar
  136. Sadeghi B (1994) Effects of corm size on saffron flower production. Technical report. Iranian Industrial and Scientific Research organization Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  137. Sadeghi B (1997) Effects of corm storage and planting date on saffron flower production. Technical report. Iranian Industrial and Scientific Research organization—Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  138. Sadeghi B (1998) Effects of summer irrigation on saffron yield. Scientific and Industrial Research Organization of Iran, Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  139. Sabzevari (1996) Saffron, the red gold of desert. Agricultural Bank, No. 46Google Scholar
  140. Saxena RB (2010) Botany, taxonomy and cytology of Crocus sativus series. Ayu 31(3):374–381PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  141. Sepaskhah AR, Kamgar-Haghighi AA (2009) Saffron irrigation regime. Int J Plant Prod 3(1):1–16Google Scholar
  142. Sevindik B, Mendi YY (2016) Somatic embryogenesis in Crocus sativus L. Methods Mol Biol 1359:351–357PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  143. Shahandeh H (1990) Effects of irrigation on yield of saffron. Annual report. Scientific and Research Organization of Iran. Khorasan InstituteGoogle Scholar
  144. Shahandeh H (1991) Evaluation of physical and chemical properties of soil and water associated with saffron yield in Gonabad. Technical report. Iranian Industrial and Scientific Organization-Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  145. Sharma KD, Piqueras A (2010) Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) tissue culture: micropropagation and secondary metabolite production. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 15–24Google Scholar
  146. Shir Mohammadi Z (2002) Effects of method and amount of irrigation water of lean area index, canopy temperature and yield of saffron. M.Sc. thesis, Shiraz University, IranGoogle Scholar
  147. Tammaro F (1999) Saffron in Italy. In: Negbi M (ed) Saffron. Harwood Academic Pub, Amsterdam, 154 ppGoogle Scholar
  148. Tsaftaris AS, Kalivas A, Pasentsis K, Argiriou A (2010) Expression analysis of flower MADS-box genes in Saffron Crocus (Crocus sativus L.) supports a modified ABCDE model. In: Husaini AM (ed) Saffron. Global Science Books, UK/ Japan, pp 38–44Google Scholar
  149. Vahedi M, Kalantari S, Salami SA (2015) Effects of osmolytic agents on somatic embryogenesis of saffron. Not Sci Biol 7(1):57–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  150. Valizadeh R (1988) Using saffron leaves for animal feeding. Project Report, Scientific and Industrial Research Organization of Iran, Khorasan CenterGoogle Scholar
  151. Verma SK, Das AK, Cingoz GS, Uslu E, Gurel E (2016) Influence of nutrient media on callus induction, somatic embryogenesis and plant regeneration in selected Turkish Crocus species. Biotechnol Rep 10:66–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  152. Wafai AH, Bukhari S, Mokhdomi TA, Amin A, Wani Z, Hussaini A, Mir JI, Qadri RA (2015) Comparative expression analysis of senescence gene CsNAP and B-class floral development gene CsAP3 during different stages of flower development in saffron (Crocus sativus L.) Physiol Mol Biol Plants 21(3):459–463PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  153. Zaki FA, Mantoo MA (2008) Integrated pest management in saffron. In: Nehvi FA, Wani SA (eds) Saffron production in Jammu & Kashmir. Directorate of Extension Education, SKUAST-K, India, pp 209–222Google Scholar
  154. Zubor AA, Suranyi G, Gyori Z, Borbely G, Prokish J (2004) Molecular biological approach of the systematics of Crocussativus L. and its allies. Acta Hortic 650:85–93CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Muhammad Kafi
    • 1
  • Azra N. Kamili
    • 2
  • Amjad M. Husaini
    • 3
  • Munir Ozturk
    • 4
  • Volkan Altay
    • 5
  1. 1.Faculty of Agriculture, Center of Excellence for Special CropsFerdowsi UniversityMashhadIran
  2. 2.Centre of Research for DevelopmentUniversity of KashmirSrinagarIndia
  3. 3.Genome Engineering Lab, Division of Plant BiotechnologySher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of KashmirSrinagarIndia
  4. 4.Botany Department and Centre for Environmental SciencesEge UniversityIzmirTurkey
  5. 5.Biology Department, Science & Arts FacultyMustafa Kemal UniversityAntakyaTurkey

Personalised recommendations