Effect of the duration of saffron plantation (Crocus sativus L.) of different densities on production and multiplication of “seed” corms, in the region of Taliouine
In Taliouine region, the expansion of saffron cultivation requires the availability of good quality corms as propagated material. It is essential to establish an on-farm multiplication scheme to optimize corms production. A multi-year experiment over 5 seasons was carried out to study saffron behavior, planted at different planting densities (35, 50 and 100 corms/m2) in comparison with the traditional planting method (150 corms/m2), in local conditions of Taliouine. The results showed that low planting densities (35 and 50 corms/m2) favored higher multiplication rates of replacement corm and the number harvested was significantly similar to high planting density and to the traditional method. Nevertheless, the latter methods have produced low-weight replacement corms because of the negative effect on their sizes. On the other hand, in the case of low densities, 65% and 75% of corms had a satisfactory size, ensuring good production of saffron spice. Finally, we conclude that production and multiplication of corms “seeds” is directly related to the choice of planting density and expected yield of stigmas and corms according to the age of this perennial crop.
Keywords: Saffron, corm, planting density, multiplication, Taliouine