Oregano Fuzzy Fungus?
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Linda
Posted on: October 30, 2001

I’ve had great luck with oregano for two years, in the yard, in southern California, USA. Suddenly, it’s turning brown, and has almost a fuzzy appearance. Fungus? Moth webs?

It could be fungus or moth webs, the former if the weather has been wet and the latter if you had a plague of gypsy moths and no rose family members left to munch on, but in that case you would find black crumbly droppings in the webs and sometimes even the caterpillars themselves to help solve the mystery. In either case, neem oil or cinnamite would be the best remedy (search the "Q&A" portion of our web-site for directions for use).

However, in your climate dodder, a parasitic vine would thrive and it loves oregano. In our zone 5 climate it does not survive the winter and we therefore are not troubled by it. If this is the problem you will notice whitish branching stems enveloping the plants and they will be firmly attached to their hosts. Burn plants that are parasitized, (you could freeze some stems of oregano for later use in cooking), just as soon as possible and hopefully before the dodder has made its numerous seeds that will lie in wait in the soil for future victims. However if you promptly remove all infested plants there will soon be no seeds left in the soil to carry on the infestation and you will have peace.

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