Taxonomy of origanum L. (Lamiaceae)

Tuncay Dirmenci1, Turan Arabaci, Taner Özcan1, Bryan Drew, Türker Yazici, Esra Martin, Ferhat Celep

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Origanum (Subfamily Nepetoideae, tribe Mentheae, subtribe Menthinae) contains several species commonly used as spices, tea, and for medicinal purposes, and is one of the most commercially important genera within the family Lamiaceae. Origanum is found exclusively in the Northern Hemisphere of the Old World, with 90% of the taxa occurring in the Mediterranean region. Although members of the genus are predominantly distributed in the Mediterranean region, there are also species (e.g., O. vulgare s.l.) distributed from the Azores to Taiwan and throughout much of Eurasia. Diploid chromosome numbers have been reported as 2n = 28, 30 and 32, with the basic number x = 15. Hybridization is quite common (~52% of species) within Origanum, and can occur between individuals belonging to the same or different generic sections. Homoploid hybridization appears to be the primary ploidy mechanism within the genus. Here, we define Origanum as having 42 species (49 taxa) and 22 hybrids, and provide an updated sectional delimitation of the genus. In addition to providing taxonomic clarification, information including gross morphological characters, photographs and drawings, distribution, ecology, and cytology of the genus are also provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication"Oregano? The genus Origanum (Lamiaceae)
Subtitle of host publicationTaxonomy, Cultivation, Chemistry, and Uses
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages48
ISBN (Electronic)9781685073879
ISBN (Print)9781685073152
StatePublished - Nov 17 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Health Professions
  • General Medicine


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