Plant of the Week
Many gardeners plant this herb in a kitchen garden with thyme and other herbs, but it's also a great plant in the landscape to use as a textural, low-growing filler, or as a groundcover.
You can plant oregano from seed from spring through fall. You can also plant transplants that will fill in more quickly. There are many varieties. Most get no taller 12-14”, including the bloom spike, which attracts beneficial bees and other pollinators. It spreads very quickly, and can cover a few feet within a season.
I have oregano planted around my front entry, and it spills out onto the sidewalk, softening the harshness of the concrete. Occasionally, I do have to trim it back so it doesn't get trampled. However, a little trampling doesn't hurt, from you or pets, with a whoosh of fragrance.
Evergreen oregano wants sun but can accept some shade, too. It does want good drainage but it doesn't have to be perfect. Sometimes in the spring, leaf-sucking insects damage it. Simply cut it back. In fact, like any herb, it will be lusher and less woody the more you snip it.
To use it, cut off long lengths and strip them from the top down.
Oregano doesn't require a ton of water, though will benefit from some in hot dry times. It's a great choice between flagstones, in perennial beds, or other spots for low-growing evergreen texture and fragrance. Plus, it's the fastest way to add fresh seasoning for your recipes in a pesticide-free garden! (If you spray chemicals on your plants, it's not a good thing to eat them).