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Italian Oregano Guide

Whether you are taking that six generation tomato sauce to its full potential or trying your hand at a new one, harvest before the flowers bloom and dry to get a flavor you just can’t find anywhere but your own garden.



Italian oregano grows best in warmer weather between 60°F-85°F. They do great in containers and gardens. Bank on Seeds recommends transplanting.

If Direct Seeding

  • Direct seed outside 4 weeks after last frost date; or
  • Direct seed into a container 12 inches deep and wide anytime of the year. It can be placed outside when the temperature is between 60°F-85°F; or

If Transplanting

Start the oregano seeds indoors 6-8 weeks before the last frost date in biodegradable pods that will let the roots grow; germination is best between 70°F-85°F. It can be transplanted outside 11 weeks later.

Surface sow oregano seeds an inch apart by pressing them gently into well raked soil – no need to cover with soil as they need light to germinate. If planting multiple rows, leave 8-10 inches in between. Germination will take 7-14 days. Thin to 12 inches apart when the seedlings start competing for space or light.


Oregano is not too picky about growing conditions but will thrive in well-draining, light soil and full sun. Water thoroughly and let dry fully between watering – check the top 4-5 inches and if dry, then water the soil.

It does not need fertilizer.


Oregano is full grown in 90 days. Start picking fresh leaves as needed when the plant reaches 8 inches in height. Like other herbs, they respond to regular harvesting as it encourages new growth. Taste is most potent if leaves are picked just before the plant flowers.


Root rot – ensure soil is well draining or the container has good drainage holes that are not blocked

Aphids, spider mites, slugs, Japanese beetles – neem oil, floating row covers, insecticidal soap

*Oregano goes well with almost everything, especially tomatoes and peppers. *

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