Greek oregano is one of the most desirable of the many varieties of oregano for cooking. This herb dries well, and retains its strong flavour and aroma if stored in an airtight container. It thrives in patio containers, raised beds, and other well-drained sites. The instructions on how to grow oregano from seed that follow provide some useful tips and tricks.
Origanum vulgare subsp. hirtum ‘Greek’
Season & Zone
Season: Warm season
Exposure: Full sun
Zone: Hardy to Zone 5
Start indoors in plug trays from late winter to mid-spring. Starting indoors is more reliable than direct sowing. Use bottom heat to achieve a constant soil temperature of 15°C (60°F) for best results. Germination occurs in 7 to 14 days.
Oregano seeds are dust-like, so handle them with care. Prepare containers or plug trays using sterilized seed starting mix, and water the soil. Then try to evenly distribute the tiny seeds on the surface of the soil. Do not bury them. Using bottom heat will improve the overall success rate. As seedlings grow, keep soil on the dry side. Pot on as necessary or transplant to the garden in late spring to early summer.
Grow in a sunny and warm spot. Aim for 25cm (10″) between plants. Cut plants back after flowering to prevent them from getting straggly. As autumn approaches, divide some to bring inside over winter. Cut back the year’s growth to about 6cm (2½”) from the soil.
Pick the leaves throughout the season as needed. Oregano leaves can be dried or frozen. Store dried leaves or whole stalks in air tight containers away from bright light.
Oregano is particularly good for repelling cabbage moths, and it can be planted between rows of Brassicas for this purpose. Also good around asparagus and basil. When in bloom, oregano is highly attractive to pollinators.
More on Companion Planting.