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Oregano vs. Oregano Thyme

I have an herb garden for the very first time. I'm very excited about the ability to walk out my kitchen door & pick fresh herbs for meals.

Oregano is one of my favorite herbs. I pick up three plants at a local nusery. This nusery grows their own plants from seed, so the plant markers often are handwritten. This one just said "Oregano--perennial". It is light green & close to the ground.

I then have to go to another nusery to find a certain variety of Basil. While perusing their herb selection, I notice their "Oregano" looks different than what I bought. It was variegated. It was labeled an annual. Then I see the plant I bought. It is labeled "Oregano Thyme".

What do I have? Will it taste like Oregano or Thyme?

Kathy
zone 5 -- Ohio
 
Kathy:
Hello fellow zone 5 Ohioan! OK, heres what I know about the herbs in question. (all that good archaeological training at work here!) Oregano, Thyme, and Marjorim are closely related. In Ancient Rome most dishes were flavored with an oregano/thyme cross that literially grew everywhere. Over time (no pun intended) distinct varieties of oregano and thyme were bred and spread. I have a feeling that the "oregeno thyme" will be a milder oregeno with a slight smokey flavor of tyme. It won't be as pungent as greek oregano or some heirloom italian variety, but it should taste OK. Why not experiment and report back?
Charlene
 
Give three fold what you take.
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Hi Kathy, what Charlene said seems right to me. I would guess what you bought is Italian oregano, there should be no varigation in the leaves. Variegated oregano has a much more mild flavor and is an annual and also will not produce as good as true oregano. Italian oregano makes a good looking hanging basket.


Peace
 
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Thank you very much. That was helpful.
 
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Thyme and Oregano (many different plants are known as oregano) do not cross. Oregano Thyme is a species of Thyme - most likely Thymus pulegioides, which tastes very much like Italian Oregano. Italian Oregano is usually Origanum x majoricum (a hybrid variety) and is not very hardy (in my experience it rarely survives my winter here). However it is not variagated. I'm not sure which oregano is variagated and annual....
 
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I got a Thyme Scented Oregano years ago, and it really does have the scent of thyme, so much so that I often use it in place of it, though more is needed. I planted it in a bed at the same time I planted mint, about 6 or 7 years ago, and it keeps coming back, growing low to the ground, while the mint keeps it almost totally shaded. It is not variegated - just looks like any other oregano or marjoram. It is much easier to harvest than thyme, which is what I like about it.

Dave
 

Dave    in Woodbury, NJ  zone 6B

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Hey.. More fellow Buckeyes on here! I used to get oregano in Marietta, Ohio. I could grow an oregano plant here on the KY side of South Point, Ohio (Ya know.. southern most point...)
It lives through the winter outdoors for me. Sandy, from Marietta, said it wouldn't over winter for her. The best oregano I ever got... I bought fresh oregano stems at the grocery store, brought them home, perked them up in some water. then dipped them in root tone and got oregano plants that live through the winter here. The more true oreganos that I have raised have white flowers that look more like Marjoram. The pretty oregano that is hardy as can be has lovely purple blossoms, but tastes like woody grass.

Good luck finding a true oregano. It has been an adventure for me. A number of herb places along the OHio River that were running great in the 1980's and 1990's have closed. That place may still be in Athens.

Are you folks farther north than Columbus?
 
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wow both the Oregano Thyme and Thyme Scented Oregano sound like herbs I will have to get this season...great informaton ...thanks all..
 
"So then neither is he that plants any thing, neither he that waters:but God that gives the increase"
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Hello there! This is an old thread but you're the only ones I found that's familiar with Oregano Thyme. I'd like to know if it's like your basic herb wherein I have to prune about every other week or so. I noticed it's not very fast growing.

Help!
 
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Welcome to OG, Cianoy!

I have also found that this variety of oregano does not grow like others (though mine is in a patch of mint, which chokes out just about anything), so you should not have to trim it until you need some. My marjoram is much faster growing, but still not as fast growing as some of the standard oreganos, which become almost invasive sometimes! And last year a lady I trade with in VT sent me some of what she called "Spicy Oregano", and it turned out to be the same! So this I planted in windowsill boxes around my deck, and it also did not grow too fast, so I sort of forgot about it. However, it is coming up again, after a severe winter, which killed the garlic chives in the windowsill box (though the chives and tarragon are also coming up). There are countless new plants coming up now, from just two, so that is similar to other oreganos. I hope these grow faster!

Dave
 

Dave    in Woodbury, NJ  zone 6B

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Try wild marjoram (Origanum vulgare) in the green-leafed form. Also try golden oregano (O. vulgare ‘Aureum’) and compact oregano (O. vulgare ‘Compactum’) with its golden-green foliage. ‘Country Cream’ has cream and green leaves.
 
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