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Harvesting and Threshing of Safflower

Manual harvesting

The crop is ready for harvest when the leaves and most of the bracteoles except a few on last formed flower heads become dry and brown. Harvest the crop preferably in the early hours when shattering would be minimum and spines relatively soft.

Cut plants with the help of sickles at the base or wherever possible uproot (black soils) by pulling and stack them in the field in the form of small and well pressed heaps until they are fully dried.

Mechanical harvesting

Combine harvestors used in wheat could also be used for harvesting and threshing of safflower.

Threshing

For easy handling and transport to the threshing yard, arrange sets of plants in the heap in opposite directions with their cut ends overlapping and branched and spiny portions away. If necessary, use improvsed sacks and gloves made from gunny bags to protect legs and hands against spines.

Thresh either by beating with sticks or with the help of bullock drawn stone rollers or tractor and the resulting material is winnowed to clean seeds.

The threshing and cleaning operation can also be made with power operated thresher used for other crops such as wheat.

Seed yield

If all the improved agro-production and potential technologies are followed, about 800 to 1200 kg/ha of safflower yields can be obtained under scanty moisture conditions and about 1500 to 2000 kg/ha under favourable moisture conditions. Under minimal irrigation, yield levels of 2000 to 2800 kg/ha could be achieved.

 

 

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