Saffron provides both a spice and a dye, imparting a bitter, honey flavor to food and a deep yellow-orange color to both food and fabrics. Saffron comes from the saffron crocus, a fall flower that grows from a bulb-like structure called a corm. While it takes thousands of these flowers to produce even a small amount of saffron, only a few of these flowers are necessary to brighten up the late summer and fall garden bed.
Spread 2 inches of compost over a well-drained garden bed that receives full sunlight. Dig the compost into the top 6 inches of soil with a spade, or work it in with a power tiller.
Sow the saffron corms so the top sits 4 inches beneath the soil surface. Plant the corms so the pointed side is on top. Space corms 4 inches apart in clusters of five to seven corms.
Water the soil thoroughly after planting, moistening it to a 6-inch depth. Water once weekly thereafter to maintain the moisture level in the soil.
Spread a 2-inch layer of organic mulch over the bed, with a mulch such as bark chips. The mulch helps retain moisture in the soil and provides some winter protection to the saffron corms.