Goniostachyum graveolens (Kunth) Small
Lantana origanoides M.Martens & Galeotti
Lippia berlandieri M.Martens & Galeotti
Common Name: Mexican Oregano
Lippia graveolens is an aromatic, slender shrub or small tree that can grow up to 9 metres tall, but is usually smaller and rarely allowed to grow more than 1 metre tall in cultivation[
A very popular culinary herb in Mexico and surrounding countries, the leaves are widely used as a flavouring, especially as a replacement for oregano, and are often sold in local markets[
]. The leaves are also sometimes found for sale in speciality stores outside of the plants native range[
Central America from Costa Rica, north to Mexico and southern N. America.
]. Rocky slopes or damp thickets on plains at elevations of 350 metres or less[
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Wild
A plant of the tropics and subtropics, usually found growing in drier regions, the plant is intolerant of frost - even more so under wet conditions[
Prefers a position in full sun in any moderately fertile, well-drained soil[
]. Prefers a light soil[
The leaves have an intense aroma of oregano and are commonly used, especially in central America, as a flavouring in tomato pastes and other dishes that require a strong oregano flavour[
]. The leaves are often used by the food industry instead of the true oregano[
]. Many people find them preferable to the European oregano[
]. They are more pungent than European oregano[
The dried leaves can be used to make a herbal tea[
An essential oil, obtained from the plant by steam distillation, is often used in the food industry as an oregano flavouring[
A decoction of the plant is credited with anti-diabetes properties, and is also used as a treatment for dysentery, as an intestinal antiseptic, a febrifuge and to regulate menstruation. If taken during pregnancy, it can cause abortion[
]. A syrup made from the leaves is used to relieve coughs and colds[
Basal or nodal softwood cuttings[
Cuttings of semi-ripe wood.
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