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  • Carina Falck

Mild marjoram - a mighty aid for meals, mourning and more.

(Afrikaans – Marjolein)

(Origanum majorana)

Now here is an herb that I can get really excited about! It has enormous culinary and emotional value.

The botanical name Origanum is derived form the Greek words ‘oros’ (mountain) and ‘ganus’ (joy/brightness) therefore ‘joy of the mountains’. This refers to the colour and the scent of the flowers and leaves, as well as the hills they originally come from.

The plant is native to the Mediterranean region and is grown in France, Tunisia, Morocco, Italy, Hungary, Bulgaria, Poland, Germany, and Turkey.

Uses in the kitchen:

As an herb, marjoram is softer and gentler on both smell and taste that oregano. It also has a slightly citrusy flavour. The fragrance is more delicate and floral than that of oregano. It is with good reason sometimes called 'sweet marjoram’.

It goes very well with meat and is particularly good with fish. Tomato dishes, mushrooms, cheesy sauces, green beans, and salad dressings are all complimented by marjoram.

Since it grows in the Mediterranean, it will obviously go well with Italian food.

Now for the medicinal part.

This oil is extremely useful in times of grief and loneliness. Many people went through a time of mourning during Covid, and found marjoram very useful, but there are of course many forms of grief – the loss of health, the loss of relationships, the loss of a pet, having to move from a beloved family home and so much more...

Essential oil of marjoram can assist with the following:

The oil is reputed to lessen the need for sexual contact and could be helpful in times of unasked for celibacy. This also needs a word af caution, since overusing the oil can cause a deadening of the senses. Davis as quoted by Battaglia warns that it may diminish normal sexual response.

As far as the digestive system is concerned, the oil strengthens the peristaltic movements of the intestine, and is useful for flatulence and relieving constipation.

Used in a massage oil it is warming, and will therefore assist with muscular spasms, and rheumatic pains.

I think the value of marjoram cannot be overrated as far as the nervous system is concerned.

Marjoram strengthens and relaxes the nerves and is highly recommended for conditions where tiredness alternates with nervous tension. The essential oil also assists if nervous tension results in insomnia.

According to Tisserand as quoted by Battaglia, Marjoram stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system (this could be summed up as the rest and digest systems) and lowers the autonomic nervous system’s function (the fight and flight responses)

Energitcally Marjoram helps to calm obsessive thinking, assists to alleviate emotional cravings, and helps to develop the capacity for self-love and nurturing. Marjoram is often very much liked by those that easily offer comfort and consolation to others.

Marjoram blends well with lavender, neroli, chamomile, citrus oils, geranium and sandalwood.


Battaglia, S.

The complete guide to aromatherapy, 2 nd edition.

The International Centre of Holistic Aromatherapy, Brisbane, Australia, 2003.



The use of essential oils must be done responsibly and does not replace any medical treatment. It is used at your own risk.

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