Origanum syriacum 'Za'atar'
Za'atar Marjoram foliage
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 3 feet
Spread: 3 feet
Hardiness Zone: (annual)
Other Names: Zaatar Marjoram, Origanum syriacum
An herb native to the Middle East, that combines the flavors of Marjoram, Oregano, and Thyme; it is quite drought and heat tolerant; an attractive perimeter plant for the herb garden or rockery
Za'atar Marjoram is an annual herb that is commonly grown for its edible qualities. The fragrant round grayish green leaves with distinctive dark green veins which emerge silver in spring can be harvested at any time in the season. The leaves have a savory taste and a pleasant fragrance.
The leaves are most often used in the following ways:
Planting & Growing
Za'atar Marjoram will grow to be about 3 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 3 feet. Although it's not a true annual, this fast-growing plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.
This plant is typically grown in a designated herb garden. It does best in full sun to partial shade. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist growing conditions, but will not tolerate any standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America.
Za'atar Marjoram is a good choice for the edible garden, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. Because of its height, it is often used as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.