Companion Planting

Most of us who have gardened for a couple of seasons have heard the term “companion planting”.  Although there are numerous definitions of this term in books and all over the internet, the simplest, and to my opinion the best explanation of the term is “the practice of planting crops in a way that will create a harmonious and mutually beneficial environment for the focal plants.”

Companion planting saves space and may deter insects

Companion planting saves space and may deter insects.

What that means is that for every plant you are trying to grow, there is a plant that can help it grow better.  The most common and well known pair of companion plants are tomatoes and basil.  Not only do they go well together in Italian cousin, but they also do well together in your garden.

There are different ways plants can benefit each other in  different ways.  Some help by producing chemicals that repel the pests from the focal plant.  Others help by breaking down nutrients so your focal plant can absorb them better and faster.

Companion planting is a very old practice.  Long ago, farmers must have noticed that when certain plants grow next to their crop, their crop grows better or is less in danger of being attacked by harmful insects.  They tried multiple combinations of crops and companion plants and over the years, creating a list that is still used by many gardeners around the world.

The list below is put together from a combination of information from around the internet.  Keep in mind that gardening in California is not the same as it is for the majority of the US.  Lettuce is a winter crop for us, so planting it with tomatoes would not work.    Please share your experience and the plant companions that work for you.

COMPANION PLANTING CHART

Plant Type

Compatible For Companion Planting

Incompatible

Anise

Coriander

Basil

Tomatoes

Bee Balm

Tomatoes, Peppers

Borage

Tomato, Squash, Strawberries

Caraway

Peas

Fennel

Catnip

Turnips, Eggplants, Peppers

Chives

Tomatoes, Carrots, Grapes, Roses

Peas, Beans

Cilantro / Coriander

Beans, Spinach, Peas

Fennel

Dill

Onions, Lettuce, Cucumbers

Carrots, Cabbage, Tomatoes

Fennel

plant by itself if possible.

Cilantro

Garlic

Roses, Cabbage, Raspberries, Tomatoes, Eggplant

Peas, Beans

Horseradish

Potatoes

Lemon Balm

Cabbage, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower, Turnips, Rutabagas

Mint

Cabbage, Tomatoes

Parsley

Tomato, Corn, Asparagus

Rosemary

Beans, Cabbage, Carrots, Sage

Sage

Rosemary, Cabbage, Carrots

Cucumbers, Beans

Savory

Beans, Cabbage, Onions

Thyme

Cabbage, Eggplants, Potatoes, Tomatoes

Marigold

Potatoes, Peppers, Eggplants

Beans

Nasturtiums

beans, peppers, cabbage, cucumbers,
squash, pumpkins

Sunflowers

melon, pumpkin, squash

Blackberries

Dill, Carrots

Grapes

Blackberries, Beans, Peas

Radish, Cabbage

Melon (Honeydew, Cantaloupe, Watermelon)

Sunflower, Radishes, Beets, Corn

Potatoes

Strawberries

Borage, Peach Trees

Possibly Cabbage

Asparagus

Tomato, Parsley, Basil, Lettuce

Beans, Bush

Potato, Celery, Cucumbers, Corn, Strawberry, Summer Savory, Carrots

Onions, Fennel, Sage

Beans, Pole

Corn, Summer Savory, Radish, Tomato

Onion, Beets, Kohlrabi, Garlic, Chives, Sage

Beets

Bush beans, Lettuce, Onions, Kohlrabi, Cabbage, Mint, Carrots

Pole beans, Mustard

Broccoli

Marigold, Sage, Beets, Nasturtium, Lettuce

Tomato

Brussels Sprouts

Aromatic Herbs, Carrot, Dill

Tomato

Cabbage

Celery, Onions, Potatoes, Aromatic Herbs, Beets, Chamomile, Spinach, Chard

Strawberries, Tomatoes, Pole beans, Dill

Cabbage, Chinese

Celery, Onions, Potatoes

Carrots

Lettuce, Radish, Onions, Tomatoes, Peas, Rosemary, Sage, Leeks, beans

Dill, Anise

Cauliflower

Sage, Thyme, Mint

Grapes

Celeriac

Leeks, Tomato, Beans, Cabbage

Celery

Onions, Tomato, Cabbage, Bush Beans, Nasturtium, Leeks

Chard

Potatoes

Chervil

Radishes

Corn

Pumpkins, Sunflower, Peas, Beans, Cucumbers, Potatoes, Squash

Tomatoes

Cucumbers

Corn, Peas, Radishes, Beans, Sunflowers, Cabbage

Aromatic herbs, Potatoes, Sage

Eggplant

Beans, Marigold, Lettuce

Garlic

Roses, Cabbage, Raspberries, Tomatoes, Eggplant

Peas, Beans

Kohlrabi

Cabbage, Broccoli, Cauliflower

Tomatoes, Beans, Strawberries

Leeks

Carrots, Onions, Celery

Peas, Beans

Lettuce

Onions, Strawberries, Beans, Carrots, Radishes, Peas, Cucumbers, Cabbage, Broccoli. Tomatoes

Okra

Marigolds, Eggplant, Peppers

Onions (& family including, garlic, leeks, shallots, chives)

Lettuce, Beets, Carrots, Strawberries, Tomatoes, Cabbage, Summer Savory

Peas, Beans, Sage

Parsnip

Peas, Beans

Peas

Carrots, Cucumbers, Corn, Turnips, Radishes, Beans, Tomatoes, Potatoes, Aromatic Herbs

Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Shallots, Gladiolus

Peppers

Tomato, Basil, Parsley, Petunias, Carrots, Onions, Okra, Marigolds, Cilantro, Catnip, Tansy, Nasturtium

Fennel, Kohlrabi, Beans

Potatoes

Beans, Corn, Cabbage Family, Marigolds, Horseradish, Lettuce, Radishes, Scallions

Pumpkin, Squash, Tomato, Cucumber, Sunflower, Chard, Raspberries

Pumpkins

Corn, Marigold, Beans, Sunflowers

Potato, Raspberries

Radishes

Beets, Carrots, Spinach, Parsnips, Cucumbers, Beans, Lettuce, Peas, Kohlrabi, Nasturtium, Peas

Cabbage, Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli, Kohlrabi, Turnips, Hyssop, Grapes

Rutabaga

Mint, Sage, Thyme, Marigolds, Nasturtium, Cabbage, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage

Grapes, Strawberries, Tomatoes, Pole beans, Dill

Spinach

Celery, Eggplants, Cabbage, Peas, Onions, Brussels Sprouts, Peppers

Squash

Radishes, Cucumbers, Corn, Nasturtium, Mint, Aromatic Herbs

Potatoes, possibly Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Carrots, Onions, Nasturtium, Asparagus, Cucumber, Aromatic Herbs (Parsley, Dill, Lovage, etc.), Spinach, Basil

Cabbage, Cauliflower, Fennel, Potatoes, Black Walnut, possibly Squash

Turnip

Peas, Brussels Sprouts, Beans

Potatoes

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