Carthamin tinctorius, One of humanity's oldest crops, Dyer's Saffron - One of humanity's oldest crops, highly branched, herbaceous annual with brilliant red, yellow & orange flowers on spiny, thistle-like plants. They are one of the best flowers for drying. Traditionally, grown for its seed, used for colouring & flavouring foods, in medicines, & making red (carthamin) & yellow dyes or as a cheap substitute for saffron, (bastard saffron). Ht: to 3 ft, Flowers used in Garlands & smaller songbirds such as cardinals, nuthatches & chickadees readily consume the small, white seeds. Sun & Dry, Seed Count Approx - 15 avg
SOWING - Prefers sunny & Dry, direct sow seeds 1.5 inches deep, 6 to 10 inches apart in mid-spring. Germination is about 2 to 3 wks, Harvest flowers from July onwards when buds start to open or leave to mature for birds. To harvest seeds, gather them when leaves turn brown, but be quick or the birds will get them.