9 Plants That Should Be Planted Together

9 Plants That Should Be Planted Together

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Companion planting is a popular concept. It involves planting two species together. When done right, they will be able to benefit each other.

But knowing what plants to pair together can be a challenge. Get it wrong and you won’t notice any benefits. Keep reading to learn what plants should be planted together. 

Why Should you Plant Some Plants Together?

There are plenty of reasons why you should consider using companion planting in your garden. Some of the biggest benefits includeOpens in a new tab.

  • Fixing nutrients. Some plants have been known to fix nutrients, like nitrogen, within the soil. This will ensure that the other plants in the garden have the nutrients they need to thrive. 
  • Attracting pollinators. Most plants will require pollination. You can use fragrant flowers to attract these pollinating insects into your garden. 
  • Stopping pests. The last thing you want is for a pest species to come into your yard and destroy your crops. You can use companion plants as a kind of natural barrier, stopping these pest species from destroying your hard work. It can also be a great way of eliminating weeds from your vegetable patch. 
  • Preserving soil moisture. Vine species can be a good way of holding the soil together, preventing erosion. This keeps important nutrients in the soil and preserves water.  
  • Saving space. If you have a limited garden space, you need to figure out how to use it as productively as possible. Because of this, you might want to grow multiple crops at the same time. 

Let’s take a look at some examples, so you can get a better idea of how it can work in your garden. 

Parsley and Tomato

One of the biggest concerns when planting tomatoes is that they will become a target for bugs and pests. Parsley might be a good way of preventing this. It will draw the bugs away from the tomatoes. It does this by attracting insects like hoverfliesOpens in a new tab.. They feed on the larvae of harmful insects. It’s best to put a parsley plant between each tomato. 

There are a few other plants that will work well with parsley. Some of these options include: 

  • Carrots
  • Corn
  • Chives
  • Onions
  • Peas
  • Peppers

Flowering Plants and Melons

When you have melons, you need to find a way to attract pollinating insects to your garden. Without these insects, you will struggle to yield any fruits. There are a few types of flowering plants that you might want to use in your garden. These options include: 

  • Dill
  • Parsley
  • Fennel

Lettuce and Tomatoes

When you are pairing your plants, you should consider the way that each of them will grow. Lettuce is a crop that will need to maintain a relatively cool temperature. This can get trickier as the temperatures start to rise towards the end of spring and the beginning of summer. 

Because of this, some people have taken to planting tomatoes next to their lettuce crops. As the tomatoes grow, they will be able to provide some shade, keeping the lettuce crop cool. This can extend the growing season, allowing you to increase your yield. 

Sunflowers or Corn with Beans 

You will often need to create a trellis for your beans to climb on. You could use a wooden stake. Or you can use something like sunflowers or corn. The strong stalk can be a good natural trellis. The root systems should be deeper, so they won’t interfere too much with the beans. 

There is another benefit to this approach. As the sunflowers mature, they will help to block out the sun. This is good for a crop like beans, which might be susceptible to heat damage. The beans can also provide benefits for something like corn. They can trap nitrogen in the soil, for the beans to access. 

Chives and Carrots

You can try planting something like chives near your carrots. This species is thought to improve the flavor of your carrots. How effective this is will depend on your tastes. But it’s still worth giving a go. There are a few other combinations that are thought to improve flavorOpens in a new tab., these include: 

  • Mint and peas
  • Chervil and radishes
  • Chives and tomatoes
  • Green beans and summer savory

Radishes and Carrots

There are plenty of crops that you can grow together as a way of optimizing your space. A good example of this is radishes and carrots. They will develop roots at different levels. As long as you give them a little space, they shouldn’t interfere with each other. This is a good way of getting the most out of your garden. 

Lettuce and Garlic

Many harmful insects will be repelled by stinky things, like garlic. Because of this, you can plant it next to things that are vulnerable to these types of attacks, like lettuce. There are a few other ways that you can protect your lettuce crop. For example, you might also want to use Aphids. 

Green Beans and Marigold

As we mentioned, green beans are a good way of fixing nitrogen in the soil. This can benefit a lot of species, like the marigold. Because of this, you might find that the marigold grows faster. But this isn’t a one-sided relationship. 

The marigold will be able to provide some protection from insectsOpens in a new tab.. The flower cover will also provide a cooler spot for the beans to grow. In particular, they are effective at repelling beetles, like the Mexican bean beetle. 

Corn With Beans and Squash

This combination is known as the Three Sisters and has been used by Native Americans for many years. There are a few reasons why this pairing has proved so effective. First, the beans will fix the nitrogen, allowing the plants to use it to grow. 

The corn, in turn, provides a trellis for the beans to climb on. This helps protect from diseases, like fungal infections. This often occurs when there isn’t enough airflow. As a bonus, it’s easier to remove the beans from the vine at harvest time. 

On the ground, the squash will benefit from the higher nitrogen rates in the soil. This form of ground cover is a good way of stopping weeds. Thick vines will be helping to lock moisture into the soil. 

Some Signs a Companion Planting Pairing Isn’t a Good Idea

It should be noted that not every companion planting will work. There are a few signs that something isn’t going to work. Some of the warning signs to look out for include: 

  • Not enough space. Even if you get a good pairing, if there isn’t enough space between them, both plants will be weakened. You need to think about the root structures and how deep each of them will go. You don’t want to have your plants fighting for resources. 
  • Height and sun requirements. Some plants are sensitive to the amount of sunlight they are receiving. If they need full sun, don’t put them near another plant that will grow tall and leave them in the shade. 
  • Nutritional needs. The soil conditions and amount of water that each plant needs should be similar. 
  • Allelopathic plants. These plants are known for releasing toxic chemicals, making it impossible for other plants to grow around them. While this is most common amongst weeds, some crop or flower plants will be allelopathic. 

Final Thoughts

Pairing two plants together is known as companion planting. When done right, this can have a host of benefits for your garden. For example, you use one plant as a natural herbicide, another might improve the taste of your crop. The hardest thing is finding what plants should be planted together. Though there are some tried and true pairings, it’s often best to do a little experimenting in your garden. 

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