Plant in the spring after all danger of frost has passed in a location that will receive full sun to partial shade. Space plants 9-12″ apart in average soil that is well-drained. Plant height 18-24″. Does well in containers or mixed pots. Attracts bees and butterflies.
Oregano, Variegated origanum vulgare
Variegated Oregano is my favorite Oregano for fresh eating. It has a milder flavor than most Oregano, yet still very flavorful. The tender, delicately textured leaves are perfect for fresh salads and vegetable dishes. Makes a nice salsa as well.
Variegated Oregano has a low growing mounding habit and very pretty variegation. It is much more tender to heat and cold than the other Oregano varieties. Best when used fresh, although Oregano dries well and retains much of its flavor. Harvest the non-flowering varieties in the late spring as the oil concentrations rise steadily in the spring and then decline.
To harvest: bunch stems together and hang in a cool and airy place to dry. Once dry, strip the leaves from the stem and store in an airtight container. For fresh use, snip leaves or small sections of the plant after it has reached six inches in height. Keeping Oregano clipped in this way will help the plant to bush out and encourage more foliage growth.
Many people skip the drying process altogether and simply chop the leaves finely, and either – add a small amount of water and freeze in ice cube trays for later use, or add the chopped leaves to softened butter. The Oregano butter, when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, will last for several weeks.