oregano from seed..what to expect

matthew18(5)March 14, 2010

I'm growing many new things from seed this late winter/spring. My oregano has sprouted but the have been shall I say.."stuck" at 1/4 inch in hieght with 2 leaves. I'm not using a grow light..only the sun from the window which ranges 5-6 hours of sun. The temp is usally between 65-70. Sometimes a little warmer. is this growth rate normal?

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karen_b(6a s.c. PA)

Several years I ago I tried sowing oregano from seed and found you have to be very patient. As you are finding it has a very slow growth rate if it doesn't get exactly what it wants. Make sure you don't overwater the seedlings or you'll end up with more algae than you will seedlings. I'd try to give them more light and cooler temperatures. But if that isn't possible maybe you could make a makeshift coldframe outside where it will get more direct natural light. I did this one year with old windows. It actually worked great, it wasn't weather tight but covering it with plastic helped out. Another thing about starting oregano from seed the plants took 3 years before they were large enough to harvest any reasonable amount. But consider it experimental and see what happens. If it doesn't work out you can always buy plants later in the season or try sowing directly after the danger of frost.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2010 at 10:04PM
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thanks for the response How long will the oregano plant last? When is it considered at maturity?

    Bookmark   March 15, 2010 at 10:10PM
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opal52(z7b GA)

I have oregano that I started from seed years ago. Since I don't harvest it to dry for winter use, I was able to start cutting it for fresh use within one year. Oregano is a perennial herb in my zone. It goes dormant in winter and pops back up every spring. The oregano in our garden is more than 10 years old. If you let it bloom, it is a bee magnet in addition to being very pretty.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2010 at 1:00PM
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I usually buy oregano plants. I have several of them that have over
wintered. But I start marjorams from seed because they are annual
and easy to grow. I have started some in my cold fram
and they are coming along nicely.
Try rooting store-bough oregano to root(in water or soil).

    Bookmark   March 17, 2010 at 7:57AM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

I've never started oregano from seed but I would expect like most perennial herbs that it would take around 3 years to get to a mature size. For most perennial herbs I do the following: Forgo harvesting altogether in year 1. Year 2, harvest very lightly or not at all depending upon plant. Year 3 you should be able to harvest normally but never more than 1/3 of the growing plant material at any time.


    Bookmark   March 17, 2010 at 8:33AM
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I love oregano and have had it in my garden also for many years now. I love it and it's a bee magnet for sure. Aslo the butterflies like it and I hear that the humming birds like it but I have not seen a hummer in my oregano patch. I can't remember if I started mine from seed or if I bought it already started at a nursery. You can also propagate it pretty easily. The flowers are very pretty.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2010 at 9:36AM
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thanks guys. I dont think I realized that it was a multi year time investment but thats ok.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2010 at 8:16PM
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leisa_in_md(z6 MD)

I started mine from seed last year and was able to use it same year. There wasn't a LOT, but I got enough for several batches of soup stock. I started several plants, which helped with the amount. And it's coming back for me this year -- hopefully it will take off! It was worth it, though.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2010 at 8:43PM
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Here oregano is certainly perennial. We had an especially cold winter this year so it had to be trimmed back to the ground. We're finally starting our spring (late for us) and it's starting to send up new growth.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2010 at 8:51PM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

The reason for my not harvesting at all or only harvesting lightly in the first 2 years of growth for perennial herbs is to allow the plant the best opportunity to thrive and grow. I'm looking forward to many years of good harvests and I want the plant to be big and strong and able to withstand repeated harvests.

This has always worked very well for me but you can experiment and see what works best for you. Experience is a fine and wonderful teacher in the garden.


    Bookmark   March 19, 2010 at 8:16AM
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Hi i just planted Greek oregano seeds,and i am zone 10,very close to Greece so i am guessing it's the righ enviroment to grow,i planted both Greek oregano and Greek basil and basil has started to grow but oregano is slow, as you can see by this photos the deifference is huge,they are not my photos just some i found on the internet so you can estimate the growing speed of oregano

Basil sprouts http://backyardfoodgrowing.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Basil-Sprouts.jpg

Oregano sprouts http://donnerfarm.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/oregano-seedlings.jpg

Do note that i planted both seeds same day,and they imerge with a 2 day difference

    Bookmark   March 11, 2014 at 4:49AM
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winstella(10b los angeles)

I planted a few oregano seeds about 3 months ago- they are already transplanted outside since I'm in zone 10. I can tell you that all 4 of my plants are growing very, very slowly. The largest is about 2 inches wide, an inch tall, with... 8 leaves or so??? They did seem to grow more in the last month than they did for the first two.

By comparison, my mint which I rooted at about the same time from a cutting is already about 10 inches tall, 8 inches wide and growing beautifully.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 1:59AM
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