How to grow
Keep plants trimmed to remain compact and the leaves tender.
- Type: Perennial, evergreen, woody
- Light: Full sun
- Soil: Average soil, good drainage
- Water: Dry to moderate
- Size: 1-2' high, up to 18" wide or more. Space plants 18" apart
When to plant/propagate
- From seed: Direct seed after the last frost date in spring, or sow seeds indoors 6-10 weeks prior to the last frost date
- Transplants: Plant seedlings when danger of frost is past
- Cuttings & divisions: Can be successful year round. Propagate from cuttings prior to bloom
- For best leaf flavor, do not allow plant to flower
- Harvest both the tender leaves (to be added at the end of cooking) and hardier leaves with whole stems (typically added at the beginning of the cooking process, then removed)
- For most tender leaves, harvest frequently to encourage new growth and to prevent flowers from developing. Pinch off any flowers that do develop
- Dry the leaves for winter use. Shelf life is approximately one year
- Many beneficial insects appreciate oregano flowers, so consider allowing some plants to flower
Indoors: Oregano can be grown as an indoor plant with 5-6 hours of bright light from a sunny window, or 12-16 hours of supplemental light provided by cool white fluorescent or LED lamps
Common pests & diseases: Leafhoppers
- Oregano & Marjoram, UC Master Gardeners of Sonoma County
- Grow Herbs!, UC Master Gardeners of Sacramento County
Recommended Varieties for Santa Clara County*
See our list of Spring Garden Market Herbs for varieties that we have found perform well here.
*Many other varieties may also do well here in Santa Clara County. This list is based on UC Master Gardener trials, taste tests, and feedback from local growers.