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The healing herb

What is Dictamos?

Diktamo or “erontas” ( Origanum dictamnus) is an endemic plant found in Crete and used as a beverage. The name comes from the mountain Dikti where it used to be abundant. It grows in mountainous and steep limestone  on steep slopes of canyons and also on steep coastal rocks.

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Ancient Greece

In Minoan Crete and Ancient Greece it was one of the most important medicinal plants. Hippocrates used it against diseases of the stomach and digestive system, in rheumatism, arthritis and for healing wounds. Dittany was considered capable of rejecting iron bows from wounded bodies. According to the ancient writers, this became known from the wild goats of Crete (Capra aegagrus) which when they were wounded and the arrow remained on their body, they ate dittany and it fell immediately.

 In ancient times the statue of the goddess Artemis, who among other things was also the protector of pregnant women, wore on her head a wreath of dittany.


Dittany can be used as a beverage by boiling 10-15g of the leaves . Let it cool for about 20 minutes  for a tonic drink that soothes headaches, neuralgia, stomach disorders and liver diseases.

The powder from dry dittany leaves is used as an antimicrobial and antiseptic for healing wounds and stopping bleeding.

It is also used in ointments or in a relaxing and tonic bath.

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