Oregano is a perennial herb with creeping
roots, 30-90 cm high, branched woody stems
and opposite, petiolate and hairy leaves (1.5
cm long). The flowers are pale purple and
the flowering period extends from late June
to August. Each flower produces four small
structures. The foliage is dotted with small
glands containing the volatile oil, which
gives the plant aroma and colour.
Origin and Distribution
Oregano is endemic
to Mediterranean region but is cultivated
in Mexico, Italy, Turkey, Dominican Republic
and Greece. In India it is found in temperate
Himalayas from Kashmir to Sikkim. It is a
hardy plant and can be grown in all warm garden
soils. Temperate to sub-tropical climate is
preferred by the plant and it grows in light,
well-drained soil in a sunny position.
is used in meat, sausages, salads, dressings,
stews and soups. In food industry, oregano
oil and oleoresin is used in food and beverages.
Oregano oil is used in alcoholic beverages
and in baked goods. It is a most common
spice for pizza.
The oregano oil possesses carminative,
stomachic, diuretic, diaphoretic properties.
It is used in whooping cough and bronchitis.
It is also used as an external application
for healing wounds. It has antioxidant and