Monday, May 28, 2012

Spanish wood Marjoram, Thymus mastichina

Thymus mastichina
This is not a herb I am growing at the moment as my stock plant died during the very wet months earlier this year. No wonder, as It is native to the dry hills of southern Portugal and central Spain. It is a delightful small aromatic shrub growing to about 30cm high with intensely scented leaves which impart a camphor and eucalyptus aroma when crushed. The oil extracted from the leaves is used as a flavouring agent in the food industry, though it is given the confusing name of 'oil of wild marjoram'. I photographed this specimen in November when the flowers were just starting to appear.

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