Companion Planting

gardenI just read a great article on Companion Planting in Farmer’s Almanac.  In case you haven’t noticed, I’m constantly in Farmer’s Almanac (online, of course).  Here are some tips from that article:

To jump start your companion planting this year, try these ten popular companion planting suggestions.

1.   Beans work with everything. Plant them next to tomatoes or spinach. They are hardy veggies and can live individually or in community.  (I’ve planted my beans next to both!)

2.    Put a little horseradish near your potatoes to increase the disease resistance. (I will definitely be doing this.)

3.   Summer cornfields can quickly be converted to pumpkin fields.

4.    Pumpkins have traditionally been grown together with corn and pole beans by the Native Americans. This method is called the “three sisters” and is beneficial for all of them: the corn provides a good pole for the beans to grow up, the beans trap nitrogen in the soil which benefits the pumpkins, and the pumpkins provide a dense foliage and ground cover to suppress weeds and keep pests at bay.

5.    Pumpkins work well as a row crop planted in close proximity to sunflowers, also a row crop.

6.    Plant healthy nasturtium near your squash to help ward off squash vine borers.

7.    Use sweet marjoram in your beds and gardens to sweeten the taste of vegetables and herbs.

Last year, I read that planting Marigolds keeps pests away so I ringed my entire garden with red Marigolds. I only use red flowers in my yard because they go so beautifully with the green foliage everywhere.  I’m extremely visual!  I do, however, have one garden with a center waterfall where I plant only purple and violet flowering plants..

The red Marigolds were beautiful and the garden had no bugs.  Don’t know that the flowers get all the credit (they definitely stink!) because I also had all new topsoil brought in that, at first, smelled strongly of manure!

At any rate, the garden was stunning and I plan to use the same technique this year.  I will, absolutely, be aware of companion planting from now on.

Do you have any companion tips to share?


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