Include the beautiful member of the oregano family in your containers and gardens. Ornamental oregano is grown for the unique flowers, not its flavor.
Kent Beauty is probably the best known of the group. Grow it in full sun for best results. It’s hardy in zones 6 to 9, but grown as an annual elsewhere. The foliage is fragrant but does not have the flavor of culinary varieties. The drooping pink flowers resemble hops and are pretty in the garden and dried arrangements. Regular shearing before bloom will encourage more compact growth.
Kirigami is a new variety of ornamental oregano. It has purplish green bracts, rose pink blossoms and light green leaves. Watch the purple color increase in bright light and cool nights. You’ll enjoy the fuller habit of this ornamental oregano variety.
Both are heat and drought tolerant and the deer tend to leave them be.
A bit more information: Dittany of Crete (Oregano dictamnus) has hairy silver gray leaves and is hardy in zones 7 to 11. It grows 6 to 12 inches tall and wide, making it great for containers and as an edging plant in garden beds.