Crocus sativus Linn.
Grown and harvested in India.
Extracted in France 5% in MPG.
Saffron is the name for the crimson red threads, called stigma and styles, that are used mainly as a seasoning and also as a dye. Saffron probably originated in Iran, but is commercially grown now throughout Europe and Asia.
Chemically, this unusual flower contains the phytochemicals picrocrocin and safranal and the carotenoid pigment crocin. It’s been traded as a precious commodity for thousands of years. This plant, the saffron crocus, is independent of sexual reproduction and must be propagated.
There are approximately 150,000 crocus flowers per kilo (of herb, not oil!) and this takes approximately 40 hours of labor. One freshly picked flower will yield about 30 mg of fresh saffron, which equals 7 mg of dried saffron. About 150 flowers will yield approx. 1 gram of dry saffron thread. The yield of dried saffron from fresh is only 13 gram/kilo.
The aroma is sometimes described as metallic honey with grassy notes, and sweet like hay. There are many alcohols and even honeys make with saffron infusions.
The oil is pale yellow, mobile, and possesses a fresh, strong odor, recalling that of the botanical material. He recommends preparing a tincture and says it wasn’t commercially available (in 1960) and then says high dilution is fine because the penetrative strength is easily underestimated. Minute additions to violet perfumes, narcissus or neroli bases can produce beautiful results, unobtainable by other means.
Butterfly Dream: Saffron Hour Haiku by Jan Benson
the sun a crystal
Daily Haiga, 2018
The saffron of virtue and contentment
Is dissolved in the water-gun of love and affection.
Pink and red clouds of emotion are flying about,
Limitless colours raining down.
All the covers of the earthen vessel of my body are wide open;
I have thrown away all shame before the world.
Mira's Lord is the Mountain-Holder, the suave lover.
I sacrifice myself in devotion to His lotus feet.
As with most essential oils, dilute before using on skin. Perform a patch test before use if essential oil sensitivity is suspected. Do not take essential oils internally. Do not use on children or pets. Seek advice from a trained aromatherapist before using on people with compromised immune systems. Keep away from eyes and mucus membranes.
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