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Origanum majorana

Pronunciation: Uh-rig-uh-num may-jur-ay-nuh
Family: Lamiaceae/labiatae (mint family)
Common Name: Sweet marjoram, knotted marjoram, wurstkraut
Plant Type:
  • trees, shrubs
  • perennial
  • annual
Height to: 3'
Width to: 2'
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • 30 to 20ºF ZONE 9
  • 40 to 30ºF ZONE 10
Sun Exposure:
  • part sun
  • full sun
Bloom Description: Since the stems take root where they touch the soil, the mound gradually increases in diameter. If grown in a hanging basket, the stems form a a cascade of attractive gray-green foliage. Sweet marjoram's oval leaves are soft and fuzzy, but you need a hand lens to see the short fine hairs. They are opposite each other on a square stem which is typical of plants in the mint family. The leaves get up to an 1 in (2. 5 cm) long and have a wonderful, very distinctive, perfumy fragrance when bruised. The flowers are tiny, less than 1/8 in (0. 3 cm) long and arranged in burrlike heads
Propagation: It's easy (but slow) to grow sweet marjoram from seed, but it's better to start it from cuttings so you will know exactly what the plant will smell like. Cuttings root readily any time of the year.
Notes for Identification: No herb garden should be without sweet marjoram. The soft, gray-green leaves add a texture and color that contrasts gently with the more assertive herb plants like rosemary, sage and bright green parsley. Most herbs are better preserved by freezing than drying, but sweet marjoram retains its fragrance after drying better than any other herb. Try sprinkling some on pizza. It's a must for turkey stuffing. Sweet marjoram is an important flavoring in german sausages, and it is used extensively in french, italian and portuguese cuisine. The fresh perfume of sweet marjoram is delightful in potpourri and scented pillows. The french put it in linen drawers. It is used in commercial perfumes. Plant info from: floridata
Located in: Annual
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