Safflower

Safflower (Carthamustinctorius L.) is a highly branched, herbaceous, thistle-like annual plant. It is commercially cultivated for vegetable oil extracted from the seeds.

Plants are 30 to 150 cm (12 to 59 in) tall with globular flower heads having yellow, orange, or red flowers. Each branch will usually have from one to five flower heads containing 15 to 20 seeds per head.

Safflower is native to arid environments having seasonal rain. It grows a deep taproot which enables it to thrive in such environments.

Safflower is one of humanity's old estcrops and grows mostly in Khorasan cities, and in Tabriz city (Iran).

Traditionally, the crop was grown for its seeds, and used for coloring and flavoring foods, in medicines, and making red (carthamin) and yellow dyes, especially before cheaper aniline dyes became available.

In coloring textiles, safflower's dried flowers are used as a natural textile dye. The pigment in safflower is the benzoquinone-derived chemical carthamin and it is classified as a quinone-type dyeable oil extracted from its seeds.

In the heat it is growing very well. The harvest is in autumn.

The packaging are available in suitable plastic films in 5 or 10 kg bags.