Oregano is one of the easiest herbs to grow and has the most uses in the kitchen. If you want to grow your own oregano and be able to add fresh ingredients to many of your recipes, here are a few tips to help you along.
Decide on a Variety
Before you can prepare any garden beds to grow oregano you need to determine what variety you will grow. There are several types of oregano and each variety has different growing requirements.
If you are looking for oregano to use in the kitchen try Greek, Kaliteri, or Syrian Oregano. For ornamental types try Golden Oregano or Kent Beauty Oregano. Many of the culinary oreganos will not be able to withstand really cold winters so I have always kept mine in containers that can be brought indoors for the winter.
Preparing the Soil
Sow oregano seeds, or replant seedlings, in a well worked bed. Make sure the soil is well drained and does not hold water for any period of time. When you prepare your bed for oregano do not add compost or fertilizer to the soil because nitrogen and other nutrients in high amount will alter the taste of the herb.
Do not over water the soil, instead let it dry out some and then water lightly so there is never too much moisture at any time. If you cannot create a suitably drained garden bed to grow oregano in try growing it in containers instead.
Oregano plants should be spaced a foot apart and where they can receive full sunlight for eight hours out of the day.
Use a stone mulch around the base of your oregano plants the soil dry and prevent root rot. Do not use mulch that will retain moisture such as, wood chips, straw and grass.
Once your oregano plants have grown eight inches tall you can begin to harvest the leaves by pinching them off the plant. If your plant begins to bloom pinch off the flower heads, this will give you more leaves to harvest in the end. After you have harvested the leaves that are on your plant cut it back about three inches to encourage new growth. If you do this continuously through the growing season you will be able to get several harvests from a single plant.