An In-Depth Companion Planting Guide

For a healthy, thriving garden, consult this companion planting guide when you're deciding what seeds to put where.
By Sarah Israel
May/June 1981
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A companion planting guide is almost a necessity for gardeners when there are so many types of fruits and vegetables to choose from.
PHOTO: FOTOLIA/VALERIY555


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A companion planting guide such as this one will show you which vegetables and flowers support or inhibit the growth of other plants and/or which pests they deter.

Basil

Plant near: most garden crops
Keep away from: rue
Comments: improves the flavor and growth of garden crops, especially tomatoes and lettuce. Repels mosquitoes.

Beans, Bush

Plant near: beets, cabbage, carrots, catnip, cauliflower, corn, cucumbers, marigolds, potatoes, savory, strawberries
Keep away from: fennel, garlic, leeks, onions, shallots
Comments: potatoes and marigolds repel Mexican bean beetles. Catnip repels flea beetles.

Beans, Pole

Plant near: corn, marigolds, potatoes, radishes
Keep away from: beets, garlic, kohlrabi, leeks, onions, shallots
Comments: same as for bush beans.

Beets

Plant near: broccoli, brussels sprouts, bush beans, cabbage, cauliflower, chard, kohlrabi, onions
Keep away from: charlock, field mustard, pole beans
Comments:

Borage

Plant near:  squash, strawberries, tomatoes
Keep away from:
Comments: repels tomato worms. Improves flavor and growth of companions.

Broccoli and Brussels Sprouts

Plant near: beets, buckwheat, calendula, carrots, chamomile, dill, hyssop, marigolds, mints, nasturtiums, onions, rosemary, sage, thyme, wormwood.
Keep away from: strawberries
Comments: marigolds repel cabbage moths. Nasturtiums repel aphids.

Cabbage and Cauliflower

Plant near: broccoli, brussels sprouts, celery, chard, spinach, tomatoes.
Keep away from: strawberries
Comments: tomatoes and celery repel cabbage worms.

Cantaloupe

Plant near: corn
Keep away from:
Comments:

Carrots

Plant near: cabbage, chives, early potatoes, leeks, lettuce, onions, peas, radishes, rosemary, sage, salsify, wormwood.
Keep away from:
Comments: onions, leeks, and wormwood repel carrot flies

Chives

Plant near: apples, berries, carrots, grapes, peas, roses, tomatoes.
Keep away from:
Comments: Improves flavor and growth of companions. Deters aphids and Japanese beetles.

Corn

Plant near: beans, cucumbers, early potatoes, melons, peas, pumpkins, soybeans, squash.
Keep away from:
Comments: soybeans deter chinch bugs.

Cucumbers

Plant near: beans, cabbage, corn, early potatoes, radishes, sunflowers.
Keep away from: late potatoes
Comments: Radishes deter cucumber beetles. Cucumbers encourage blight in late potatoes.

Dill

Plant near: broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumber, lettuce, onions
Keep away from: carrots
Comments: Improves flavor and growth of cabbage family plants.

Epplant

Plant near: green beans, peppers, potatoes, tomatoes
Keep away from:
Comments: green beans deter Colorado potato beetles.

Garlic

Plant near: cabbage, cane fruits, fruit trees, roses, tomatoes
Keep away from: peas, beans
Comments: deters Japanese beetles and aphids. A garlic oil spray deters onion flies, aphids, and ermine moths. A garlic tea helps repel late potato blight.

Kale

Plant near: aromatic herbs, buckwheat, cabbage family, marigolds, nasturtiums
Keep away from: pole beans, strawberries
Comments:

Kohlrabi

Plant near: cabbage/cauliflower companions (except tomatoes)
Keep away from: fennel, pole beans, tomatoes
Comments: kohlrabi stunts tomatoes

Lettuce

Plant near: beets, carrotsparsnips, radishes, strawberries
Keep away from: cabbage family
Comments: lettuce tenderizes summer radishes.

Marigolds

Plant near: all garden crops
Keep away from:
Comments: stimulates vegetable growth and deters bean beetles, aphids, potato bugs, squash bugs, nematodes, and maggots.

Marjoram

Plant near: all garden crops
Keep away from:
Comments: stimulates vegetable growth.

Mustard

Plant near: alfalfa cover crops, fruit trees, grapes, legumes
Keep away from:
Comments: stimulates growth of companion plants.

Nasturtiums

Plant near: apples, beans, cabbage family, greenhouse crops, potatoes, pumpkins, radishes, squash
Keep away from:
Comments: repels aphids, potato bugs, squash bugs, striped pumpkin beetles, and Mexican bean beetles and destroys white flies in greenhouses.

Onions

Plant near: beets, cabbage family, carrots, chamomile, lettuce, parsnips
Keep away from: beans, peas
Comments: deters most pests, especially maggots.

Oregano

Plant near: all garden crops
Keep away from:
Comments: deters many insect pests.

Parsley

Plant near: corn, roses, tomatoes
Keep away from:
Comments:

Parsnips

Plant near: onions, radishes, wormwood
Keep away from:
Comments: onions and wormwood help keep root maggots from parsnips.

Peas

Plant near: beans, carrots, corn, cucumbers, early potatoes, radishes, turnips
Keep away from: garlic leeks, onions, shallots
Comments:

Peppers

Plant near: basil, carrots, eggplant, onions, parsley, tomatoes
Keep away from: fennel, kohlrabi
Comments:

Potatoes

Plant near: basil, beans, cabbage family, corn, eggplant, flax, hemp, marigolds, peas, squash
Keep away from: apples, birch, cherries, cucumbers, pumpkins, raspberries, sunflowers, tomatoes, walnuts
Comments: hemp deters phytophthora infestans. Basil deters potato beetles. Marigolds (dug into crop soil) deter nematodes.

Radishes

Plant near: chervil, cucumbers, lettuce, melons, peas, nasturtiums, root crops
Keep away from: hyssop
Comments: radishes deter cucumber beetles. Chervil makes radishes hot. Lettuce helps make radishes tender. Nasturtiums improve radishes' flavor.

Rosemary

Plant near: beans, cabbage, carrots
Keep away from:
Comments: repels bean beetles, cabbage moths, and carrot flies.

Sage

Plant near: cabbage family, carrots, tomatoes
Keep away from: cucumbers
Comments: deters cabbage moths and carrot flies. Invigorates tomato plants.

Soybeans

Plant near: corn, potatoes
Keep away from:
Comments: chokes weeds and enriches soil.

Spinach

Plant near: celery, cauliflower, eggplant, strawberries
Keep away from:
Comments:

Strawberries

Plant near: borage, bush beans, lettuce, pyrethrum, spinach
Keep away from: cabbage family
Comments:

Sunflowers

Plant near: cucumbers
Keep away from: potatoes
Comments: can provide a trellis and shelter for shade-loving cucumbers.

Swiss Chard

Plant near: bush beans, kohlrabi, onions
Keep away from: pole beans
Comments:

Tarragon

Plant near: all garden crops
Keep away from:
Comments: improves vegetables' flavor and growth.

Thyme

Plant near: all garden crops
Keep away from:
Comments: deters cabbage moths.

Tomatoes

Plant near: asparagus, basil, cabbage family, carrots, gooseberries, mustard, parsley, onions, rosemary, sage, stinging nettles
Keep away from: fennel, kohlrabi, potatoes, walnuts
Comments:

Turnips and Rutabagas

Plant near: peas
Keep away from: knotweed, mustard
Comments: mustard and knotweed inhibit the growth of turnips and rutabagas.

 


EDITOR'S NOTE: Companion planting is not an exact science. Use your own experience, this chart, and the advice of other local gardeners to help you achieve successful partnerships in your garden.

 


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Post a comment below.

 

jesusrox19
3/14/2014 6:13:50 PM
Problem with section on Cabbages and Cauliflower!! Never plant a plant near a plant from the same family. "Doing so weakens you plants and makes them susceptible to invasion by pests and diseases." http://homeguides.sfgate.com/not-plant-near-cucumbers-33318.htm

RisaR
1/2/2014 9:59:30 AM
Last year I planted my pole beans in the same small 4x4 raised bed as my kohlrabi and I got great yields of both. I still have a few freezer bags of green beans left and at one point we were getting buckets of beans from less than 15 plants. So I think the article are good suggestions but there is no real proven science to some of the do not grow nears. I do take some of the suggestions and ideas I find online but I also think that just trial and error in placing different things near each other is the best way to find out what works. Everyone's environment is just a little different so other things can be influencing a plant rather than just what is nearby.

kdw
10/27/2013 6:16:16 PM
There is scientific evidence that nitrogen fixing plants such as legumes can benefit other plants that can not do so through soil interaction, as well as trap cropping for pests. The Three Sisters planting method is merely using a planting that benefits and saves space. Allelopathy is also scientifically proven. So I would not go so far as to say most of it is myth. I happen to be writing a research paper on "companion planting" which is somewhat of an anthropomorphic term. Look up trap cropping, intercropping, allelopathy, polyculture, "plant associations" for ecological readings.

Debi
7/16/2013 11:50:57 AM

You may say myth, but I've had some experiences that were tragic! Don't plant hot peppers (jalapeno, poblano, etc.) near green beans.  One year I had them next to each other and I got about 4 beans off of 15 plants.  I keep them well separated and now I get more beans than I know what to do with.  And, marigolds almost totally killed my oregano...I'd never heard of this one, but I had marigolds lining my garden area and my one thriving oregano almost totally died.  I pulled the marigolds from within 4 feet and it came back...go figure.  I suspect a lot of companion planting may not be as devastating as these, but I would consider it when plotting my garden...it's hard enough keeping an organic garden going without veggie rivalries.


normg
7/15/2013 10:17:39 AM

dafydd9; don't worry about it too much.  Most of the "companion planting" guidelines are steeped in myth and conjecture with very little documented scientific support.  It's fun to plant a variety of plants, and it is interesting to plant marigolds or thyme or whatever with this or that crop.  But whether next to, surrounded by, adjecent, dense, or sparse; any "companion" planting is mosty myth.  What is important is considering crops that are impacted by the same diseases or pests.  For example, both potatoes and tomoatoes are susestiptable to late blight, so they say to keep them apart.  But since late blight can sweep across a whole county in a matter of a few days (or even overnight), I am not sure how much validity there is even to that.  Oh...for the record I have been a serious veggie gardener for about 20 years and I have completed basic horticulture classes.


dafydd9
6/8/2013 1:10:08 AM

when you say, keep away from, how far away are you talking??


dafydd9
6/8/2013 1:10:04 AM

when you say, keep away from, how far away are you talking??


courtney.girouard.7
4/23/2013 9:04:42 AM








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