Definitions

origanum

oregano

[uh-reg-uh-noh, aw-reg]

Flavourful dried leaves and flowering tops of any of various perennial herbs of the mint family, particularly Origanum vulgare. Oregano is an essential ingredient of Mediterranean cuisines; in the U.S., use of oregano rose sharply in the late 20th century, largely because of the popularity of pizza. Native to the Mediterranean and western Asia, the herbs are now naturalized in parts of Mexico and the U.S.

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Origanum is a genus of about 20 species of aromatic herbs in the family Lamiaceae, native to the Mediterranean region east to eastern Asia. The genus includes some important culinary herbs, including Marjoram and Oregano.

Origanum species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Coleophora albitarsella.

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