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Mexican Oregano

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  • Mexican Oregano

    Just wondering if anyone knows of anywhere to buy Mexican Oregano seeds? I have looked all over the internet and have not had any luck. Thank You for any help!

  • #2
    All the Mexican Oregano that I've grown have been from cuttings -- I assume you're talking about Plectranthus amboinicus? I'd suggest asking around for some locally, as I'm not sure how well cuttings would ship.


    • #3
      Are you in the Chicago area? Can I ask where you get your cuttings from?


      • #4
        Mexican oregano

        Si c'est le Plectranthus amboinicus, il est très difficile de trouver des graines et je ne suis pas certain qu'il en produise. Le mieux c'est de demander des boutures (elles s'enracinent facilement). J'ai quelques pieds d'une variété à feuilles panachées (Plectranthus amboinicus 'Variegatus'), mais les boutures ne supporteront pas le voyage outre-atlantique.


        • #5
          Here in my neck of the woods, Mexican Oregano is a slang name for "Epazote". It has a bit of a licorice flavor. There are several commercial seed sites that list it for sale. It's great baked into fish.



          • #6
            There might be a little mix up here, mexican oregano being Lippia graveolens, some refer to it as an Aloysia. Does it have rough leaves? Seed is very small and sometimes i see it available online.

            Epazote (Dysphania ambrosioides), smells way different then mexican oregano, and I have never heard it referred to as oregano, interesting It is used in alot of bean dishes down here in the southwest.

            edit:i saw some of this Plectranthus amboinicus on a truck at work today, crushed a little, and it does resemble actual epazote, way cool! I always knew it as cuban oregano..
            Last edited by awray; 02-09-2010, 06:52 PM.


            • #7
              Originally posted by rayray View Post
              Are you in the Chicago area? Can I ask where you get your cuttings from?
              I grow a bunch of Mexican herbs for wholesale around Chicago so...

              Mexican Oregano is Lippia graveolens and is reproduced via cuttings. At a wholesale level there are several greenhouses that produce rooted cuttings, however it's considered a specialty herb so there's not a bunch out there. If you get a parent plant, take soft cuttings in the spring from fresh growth. Rayray: I sell to Clovers Garden Centers here in Chicago and will be delivering a load to them including Mexican Oregano around Memorial Day 2010.

              Epazote is Dysphania ambrosioides and is *not* Mexican Oregano. I grow this one as well, seeds are available on the Internet as well as from several wholesale seed suppliers, I buy from Ivy Garth in Ohio.

              Plectranthus amboinicus is also known as Cuban Orgegano and is commonly referred to as "Green Swedish Ivy" since it's in the Plectranthus genus. I also grow several varieties of ornamental Swedish Ivy and can say they're not the same. I've rarely seen seed for these as they're mostly propagated from cuttings. Unrooted cuttings of these are hard to come by, I buy in small starter plants from Blue Bird Nursery (and move them up) and if one or two makes it through the winter I take my own cuttings. This one isn't hardy in any way, shape or form, it has to be like 75% water so watch out below 50 degrees.


              • #8
                Id love to find a Lippia graveolens.... My aunt found me a Plectranthus amboinicus last year and its nice, but I think the spicier Lippia is what im after for myself.... too bad Ivy Garth is wholesale. Maybe I can ask a local small greenhouse to order one for me...?


                • #9
                  I orginally got seed of Lippia graveolens from Johnny's. But they don't seem to carry it any more. I had a huge stock plant that I would take cuttings from each spring, but it didn't make the winter this year. with the price of propane so high, I couldn't keep the greenhouse as warm as normal. so I'm looking for another too as they are hard to find, but I don't sell many plants anyway since it's not winter hardy, my customers opt out for regular oregano.


                  • #10
                    According to Diana Kennedy (who researched at least 13 different herbs at the National Herbarium) there are many regional Mexican herbs that are called Mexican Oregano, depending on the area. Remember, it's just a common name.

                    Mountain/Valley Growers in Colorado grow and sell Lippia graveolens plants as Mexican Oregano. There is a good photo of it on their website. It flourishes in arid climates, but may do well with more water in well-drained soils.

                    Other herbs in Mexico, Texas and New Mexico grown as Mexican Oregano are Poliomentha bustamanta (reddish blooms) and Poliomentha longiflora (lav-white blooms). If you Google these names, you'll come up with other forums having this discussion.

                    The Plectranthus ("Cuban Oregano") species are tropicals and tolerate the more humid and wet Caribbean and Yucatan areas. (not cold-winter hardy).

                    So the New World oreganos are just whatever native plants grow locally which have a similar flavor/volatile oils profile as Mediterranean Origanums have. There apparently is no one "true MO".


                    • #11
                      Ciao rayray-

                      Yeah, I sure would love to grow Mexican Oregano from seed, too. It's a tough deal to over-winter things and quite honestly, by season's end, I'm ready for a break from plants. Here's what Richters Herbs had to say about it:

                      "All but Greek Oregano plants are propagated by cuttings only. The plants
                      either do not produce viable seeds or the plants grown from seed may
                      not be true to the parent plant."

                      I get 2 plants from them every year and that's enough to use with all of the peppers we grow. I guess I'll keep getting my 2 plants from them.


                      • #12
                        So what is the real name of Mexican oregano? I want to find out the real name so i can see if i can find the right one.


                        • #13
                          I believe the correct botanical name is Paliomintha maderensis. I'm looking for seeds (very rare) or the plant.


                          • #14
                            Mexican Oregano Lippia graviolens seeds can be purchased from for $2.99
                            Paliomintha maderensis plants can be purchased from
                   (no seeds).


                            • #15
                              Any grocery store such as Whole Foods or Central Market will carry Mexican Oregano.