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Origanum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: MINT FAMILY
Habit: Annual to shrub [tree, vine], glabrous to hairy, generally aromatic. Stem: generally erect, generally 4-angled. Leaf: generally simple to deeply lobed, generally opposite, generally gland-dotted. Inflorescence: generally cymes, generally many in dense axillary clusters surrounding stem, generally separated by evident internodes or collectively crowded, spike- or panicle-like, occasionally head-like or raceme, subtended by leaves or bracts; flowers sessile or pedicelled. Flower: generally bisexual; calyx generally 5-lobed, radial to bilateral; corolla generally bilateral, 1--2-lipped, upper lip entire or 2-lobed, +- flat to hood-like, occasionally 0, lower lip generally 3-lobed; stamens generally 4, epipetalous, generally exserted, paired, pairs generally unequal, occasionally 2, staminodes 2 or 0; ovary superior, generally 4-lobed to base chambers 2, ovules 2 per chamber, style 1, generally arising from center at junction of lobes, stigmas generally 2. Fruit: generally 4 nutlets, generally ovoid to oblong, smooth.
Genera In Family: +- 230 genera, 7200 species: worldwide. Many cultivated for herbs, oils (Lavandula, lavender; Mentha, mint; Rosmarinus, rosemary; Thymus, thyme), some cultivated as ornamental (in California Cedronella, Leonotis, Monarda, Phlomis). Note: Moluccella laevis L., shell flower, historical waif in California. Satureja calamintha (L.) Scheele subsp. ascendens (Jordan) Briq. reported as alien but not naturalized. Salazaria moved to Scutellaria; California Hyptis moved to Condea, California Satureja moved to Clinopodium.
eFlora Treatment Author: Dieter H. Wilken & Margriet Wetherwax, family description, key to genera
Scientific Editor: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.

Origanum
Habit: Perennial herb [subshrub] glabrous to short-hairy. Stem: decumbent to erect, generally branched. Leaf: petioled to sessile; blade generally ovate, entire to toothed. Inflorescence: axillary, sessile or peduncled, collectively spike- or panicle-like; wide bract subtending flower, bracts generally overlapping. Flower: calyx radial, 5-lobed; corolla 2-lipped, upper lip +- entire, lower 3-lobed; stamens 4, enclosed by upper lip or exserted; style lobes +- unequal.
Species In Genus: 45 species: Mediterranean, western Asia. Etymology: (Greek: ancient common name, mountain delight) Note: Cult for tea, cooking herbs, essential oils (Origanum dictamnus L., dittany; Origanum majorana L., sweet marjoram).
eFlora Treatment Author: Arthur O. Tucker
Jepson Online Interchange
Key to Origanum

Previous taxon: Nepeta cataria
Next taxon: Origanum ×majoricum

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Citation for this treatment: Arthur O. Tucker 2016. Origanum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=9474, accessed on August 27, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on August 27, 2016.