Do you know what Mexican oregano is? of course if you are here, that means you already know what it is and you are searching for how to grow or plant Mexican oregano or it’s uses. Don’t worry because I gat you covered!. Growing Mexican oregano is somewhat simple, here is how to go about it.
To grow Mexican oregano, there are 3 methods to grow it, they are growing with the seed, with the stem and division. In what ever method you need to grow it, just prepare your garden or container and fill with loamy soil, then sow the seed or plant the stem or the division.
I hope I have given you an insight on how to grow Mexican oregano, but that’s just an insight, so in order to learn everything involved in growing this herb, read this article carefully.
This plant is a warm weather plant which thrives in USDA zones 9 to 11, it is found mainly in the southwestern USA, Central America and Mexico, that’s why it is known as “Mexican oregano”.
It is used for cooking and it’s very flavorful in foods etc.
Although this herb has a cousin, the European oregano ( Origanum vulgare) which is mainly found in countries such as, Italy, Greece,France, Morocco, Turkey and Israel. But Mexican oregano is far more flavorful compared to it’s cousin (European Oregano).
Many people have confirmed or attested that the flavor of this herb is like that of a citrus (lemon) which is very great in foods.
Mexican oregano is a perennial plant and a lover of sunlight, but very prone to cold ( frost), although it do survive frost by regrowing the next season.
I hope I have given you an insight, now let’s learn exactly how to grow this plant and keep harvesting it for a long time.
WHAT IS MEXICAN OREGANO
Mexican oregano (Lippia graveolens) is a herb plant that is grown in the warm weather condition, especially in the southwest of USA, Central America and Mexico, which is used as a spice and herb.
This plant is a member of the verbena family. It is a large shrub or small multi-stem tree which could grow between 4 to 8 inches in height and it’s leaves and stem are edible and flavorful.
It has small leaves which is covered in a star like white blossoms.
This herb is believed to have the potential to cure many ailments such as stomachache, stress,asthma, bronchitis etc.
It has 2 other plants that is usually referred to as ” Mexican oregano, but they are not in anyway related to it, they are Poliomintha longiflora and Monarda fistulosa var.
HOW TO PLANT/GROW MEXICAN OREGANO
To grow Mexican oregano, there are 2 places to do this, either in the garden or indoor, maybe in the room, store or shade
There are 3 methods of Mexican oregano planting, they are: planting with the seed, planting with the stem (cutting) and planting with Division. I will explain them below starting from the seed planting method.
How to Grow/Plant Mexican Oregano With seed
Planting this herb from seed is one of the commonest methods of planting and growing it. It requires the use of seeds wether to grow it in indoors, inside a container or outdoors in the garden with this method.
Mexican oregano seed sowing/planting indoors with container
If you want to grow this herb plant Indoors, you need a good container, or containers, depending on how many of this plant you want to grow indoors, and if you will transplant it later to the garden or grow it permanently indoors.
If you want to grow it permanently indoors, at least about 4 to 8 feet container is needed , depending on how many you want to grow. But if you will transplant it later to the garden, at least a foot to 3 feet container is good, although depending on the quantity being grown.
The container must have small openings all over it’s bottom which will help in the water drainage system and also help the soil drain very quickly.
Now fill the container with a good loamy soil that is rich in organic matter.
Add small peat to the sand and mix them completely.
Then get your Mexican oregano seed or seeds, depending on you.
Try to buy the seed from a reputable seeds store for better quality seeds.HERE IS MY RECOMMENDED SEEDS STORE. They sell quality seeds.
When the seed/seeds arrive, take them to the container and sow. Make tiny holes of 2 to 3 inches with your fingers in the container and sow them, then cover with sand and take the container to where the sun will get to it. A window sill is good.
Water at least twice per 3 or 4 days with about an inch of water per seed, depending on the type of soil and weather involved.
With the normal seed germination condition, the seed will germinate and sprout in 2 to 4 weeks.
When it does, leave it there and keep watering till the frost is over and the seedling or seedlings have grown a little bit matured with enough leaves, then transplant to the garden.
To transplant to the garden, after the winter, ( frost) clear the garden and make hole or holes ( depending on how many plants involved) according to the plant’s size. Then use tools such as farm spade to uproot it from the container and transplant it to the garden without hurting or damaging the roots.
The easiest way to transplant is to get containers that has a removable bottom,so that it will be very easy to empty the container and get your plant with the roots intact.
When you have successfully transplanted, cover the holes and water it frequently untill the roots are established in the soil. Again this depends on the soil and weather too. If the soil is wet already, there shouldn’t be any need to be watering it.
How to grow with seeds in the Garden
To grow Mexican Oregano with seeds in the garden is very simple. After the frost ( winter) just check the soil of the garden because this plant requires a fertile soil with pH of 6.0 to 8.0.
Clear the garden and rake it ( to be clean). Then make 2 to 3 inches holes, depending on the number of this herb you want to grow, then order the seeds from my recommended seeds store above, if you like or any reputable seeds store you know.
When the seeds arrive, go and sow them in the holes you made in your garden and cover with sand. After 2 or 4 weeks, they will sprout with enough watering. 1 inch of water is okay per seed.
How TO Grow Mexican Oregano With Stem
Another method to grow this plant is with it’s stem ( cutting).
This method Is just similar to the method of growing with seeds, but the only difference is this time, the stem is cut and used to grow new Mexican Oregano.
This method is also used for growing this plant indoors and outdoors.
How to grow Mexican Oregano indoors with the Stem ( cutting)
Get a container and fill it with loamy soil as I directed above, then get the stems of this plant.
To get the stems, some stores do sell it, you can order from there or you can get them from your friend’s or neighbor’s Mexican oreganos.
Cut an 8 inch stem of new-growth softwood.
Use sharp and clean knife to cut the stems early in the morning before the sun comes up, then take the stem to the planting pot or containers and plant them.
To plant them in the containers, remove the leaves at the bottom of the stem where you will put on the soil, then put them on the soil while standing and water them.
This time, don’t keep them where the sun could get to them, because at this early stage, they require a cool place with little sunlight to grow roots.
When they grow roots and start growing good amount of leaves, transplant them if you don’t want to keep them permanently indoors.
To transplant them to the garden, use the same method I explained above and they will be okay.
How to grow Mexican Oregano in the Garden with the stem
Just like I stated above, you will need to either buy the stem of this plant which you are to replant in herb and seed store or get them from a friend or who ever.
Early morning is the time to get and plant them. Cut an 8-inch stem of new growth softwood and take them to the garden, make holes, depending on the number you want to grow and plant them.
The holes this time should be a little bit deeper than when sowing the seeds. At least they should be about 3 to 5 inches deep and contain a space of at least half a foot.
Cover the holes with sand after planting and keep watering them till they grow roots. 2 inches of water per 2 days is okay per plant. Again depending on the soil and weather condition.
How To Grow Mexican Oregano With The Division Method
This division method for Mexican Oregano cultivation is the most simplest and the fastest in growing.
It could either be grown indoors or. outdoors and it will still do very fine for the fact that it will have access to good amount of sunlight.
To Grow it with this method, get already growing plant, pull it out of the soil and use a very sharp knife to divide it into 2 on a straight equal parts up to it’s bottom and roots.
Take the divided parts to either a container or in to the garden and plant.
To plant in the garden, dig holes of about 4 to 5 inches into the soil and plant. Water them regularly and they will continue growing because they are already doing so.
CARE OF MEXICAN OREGANO PLANTS
To successfully grow this plant, it needs to be taken care of which it requires in many ways.
Although this plant is unlike other plants that do require to much care as such because it is not commonly affected by diseases, pests and even weed or water, hence it could survive in many harsh weather condition.
To take care of this plant, here are some of the ways and cares it requires:
Full Access to the Sun: As I stated earlier on this topic, Mexican Oregano is a warm weather plant, hence it requires full access to sunlight and this is denied will definitely lead to bad growth or even death!.
It need at least a temperature of about 30F to grow normal and anything below this is not good for it.
Even if you are growing this plant indoors, it is very important to keep them in a position where they will have access to the sun or they will die. This is why it is not advisable at all to grow or try to grow this plant during the winter, because it won’t survive in the frosty weather condition when it’s young, but it could when it has grown.
Although even if it has grown, the leaves will wilt and die off during the winter time and will regrowing itself after the winter.
Watering: Just like every living thing on this Earth needs water, so as this plant does, but the level or quantity of water it needs is what differentiate it from other plants.
This plant is very prone to waterlogging and thus does not require too much water at all, although it might survive on a waterlgged soil, but not long enough before it will start dying off!.
This is why it requires a type of soil that is self draining or an artificial drainage system could be built in the garden to control the amount of rainfall ( water) being stored in the soil.
And also when growing indoors, I recommend getting pot or container with tiny openings at the bottom where excess water will be passed out thereby helping the soil to drain more quickly.
To water this plant, at seed stage, an inch of water is enough per 2 days and when they start growing, upgrade to at let 1 and half inch of water on each plant per 2 or 3 days.
When they are fully matured, 1 and half glass of water is okay per plant on 2 or 3 days interval, depending on the soil and season.
Note – there is absolutely no need to water them in the rainy season, instead, find a way to construct a drainage system in the garden to curtail waterlogging.
Manure/Fertilizer: The application of organic Manure or chemical Fertilizer is important in the growth of this plant.
Although the type of soil and soil fertility does determine if Fertilizer will be added or not, as this plant does not require much Fertilizer.
This is why it is very important to examine the soil so that you could know how fertile it is and so make your decision if fertilizer should be applied or not at the first year of growing this plant.
If the soil fertility is ok, then no need for fertilizer that first year, just add some peat to the hole when planting and that’s all!.
If the fertility level of the soil is depleting or not enough, then chemical fertilizer such as 3 2 3 N.P.K (mix) is recommended or if you are the organic type, use compost or animal dungs such as fowl, goat, sheep, cow or even pig dung on the plants and they will do just fine.
Weeding: Mexican Oregano is one of the plants that is not fatally disturbed by weed, although weed do have some negative effects on this plant, but not fatal.
This doesn’t mean that weed should be neglected, no! weeding Mexican oregano garden is very important, to keep the garden clean and also to keep the plants on the safer side.
At about some weeks of planting this herb in the garden, weeds may sprout in large number, depending on the type of soil involved, when they do, they should be removed or prevent from ever growing at all or they may endanger the plants with diseases and pests.
To curtail weeds from ever growing in your garden, at least for a while, there are some chemicals that could kill weeds. Get it and spray it on the weeds or on the empty garden soil before planting this plant.
This will go a long way to curtail the activities of weeds in your garden, at least for a long time, thereby giving the plants a breathing space or time to grow to their full potential.
Another method of weeding is, manual weeding. This method of weeding is the use of manual tools such as weeding hoe, wheelbarrow and rake to uproot, rake and pack the weeds, and disposed off!.
This manual method is very tiresome and requires alot of work and labor, depending on how large the garden is.
Pruning: Pruning of Mexican Oregano plant is important if you want them to keep in good shape and look good in the garden.
This normally happens when the leaves are being harvested and also when they are being used to grow other plants, then they are pruned.
Pruning helps Mexican Oregano to grow new stems and new and fresh leaves, so once in a while, try to prune them.
Pest Control: Although this plant is not fatally disturbed by pests, but that doesn’t mean it does not have pests at all.
There are few new number of pests that do attack or disturb this plant and they are:
White flies,Treat aphids, Mealybug, leaf miners, or spider mites these pests could be controlled with insecticidal soap or neem oil, etc.
Just look out for any of these pests and respond immediately you notice any sign of them.
Disease Control: One of this plant’s main problem/disease is root rot. It is very susceptible to root rot if the soil is very wet.
The only way to know if a plant suffering from root rot is salvageable, you will need to pull up the plant and check if the root has damages or rots.
If you notice that the entire root system is a soggy, rotten mess,then it is obvious that the plant is suffering from this disease.
But If, on the other hand, you see some healthy roots, then trim away the bad ones among them and replant in an area with better drainage.
This is the one of the reasons it is forbidden to overwater this plant and also provide a good drainage system when growing it in the garden.
HARVESTING AND STORING
Mexican Oregano is very simple to grow and also fast. When the plant grow up to at least 2 feet and the leaves are wide enough, then you could start harvesting them if you wish.
To harvest, simply pick out the leaves or harvest inform of pruning by cutting off the stems, then collect the leaves on the stem. The stem is also used in so many recipes too.
To store the leaves, simply harvest them, put them in a tray and place under the sun for them to dry, and when they do, place them in zippered bags and store in a cool dry and we’ll ventilated place.
Or cut the stems with their leaves, hang them in a cool and dark place.
USES OF MEXICAN OREGANO
As we all know, Mexican Oregano is used for cooking so many different types of dishes. This is the most important use for growing this plant.
As I stated earlier, it is said to be used to cure different kinds of diseases such as stomachache, stress, etc which makes it a very good herb. Although this may vary from place to place ( may not be a general opinion).
It is also used as a source of beauty or decoration in the house and in the garden, hence it is grown inside the house too.
As I stated earlier, Mexican Oregano is one of the simplest plants to grow, I hope this article have proved it. Also I hope too that you have learned alot from it, and if you did, kind show love by sharing it on social media and subscribe to my newsletter, so that you won’t miss any helpful content.
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