- botanical name: Origanum rotundifolium ‘Kent Beauty’
- annual, tender perennial zones 7-10
- height 6″
- spacing 6-9″ apart
- full sun tolerant, partial shade
- fertile, well-drained soil
- flower color pink to lilac
- uses in garden: as a border, great in containers, cut flower, dried flower, drought tolerant, as an edging, fragrant, small/miniature
- although the foliage is aromatic, it is not usually used in cooking
Kent Beauty is a beautiful cascading ornamental Oregano. This trailing variety produces papery, everlasting pink flowers nestled among gray-green leaves borne on fine wiry stems giving it a lovely, delicate appearance. Well suited for use in dried flower arrangements. Great oval to nearly heart-shaped foliage likes to spill out of hanging pots and baskets. Beautiful when used in rock gardens. Use Kent Beauty Oregano in small space gardens or containers where its features can be appreciated close up. Herbaceous annual, or may be perennial in mild winter. Prefers fertile, well-drained soils. Full sun, or part shade in hot, dry climates.
Kent Beauty, Hopley’s, Bristol and Dittany of Crete are valued for their flowers and we view them as mainly ornamental. The best culinary ones are Italian, Turkish, Greek and Hot & Spicy. Of these, Greek and Italian bloom about mid-summer through fall and have the most flavor-filled leaves right before the flowers bloom. Although the flowers are edible too, it’s usually the leaves that are used for flavoring foods. They retain their flavor better in hot dishes if added toward the end of cooking. Heating too long may result in bitterness.
It is easiest to propagate from starter plants, take your cuttings in the late spring, and allowing them to root in a fine soil mix. Transplant in container or out in the garden and water in well. Kent Beauty prefers fertile, well-drained soil. Don’t overwater.
To harvest: bunch stems together and hang in a cool and airy place to dry. Once dry, the flowers can be used in dried bouquet arrangements or potpourri.