We all do better when we have good friends in life. You may be surprised to hear that this is also true for our plants. Everyone knows pollinators like bees and other insects are crucial for fruits and vegetables to develop their crop but did you know that certain plants can help other plants to grow better, accumulate nutrients in the soil, or keep pests away? Read on to learn more about the friends and foes of your favorite garden plants!

Planting Companion Flowers

Not only have companion plants the power to reduce aphids, moth, and other annoying bugs but many also add beauty to your garden. Some popular companion plants include lavender, marigold, and nasturtium. Their colorful blossoms attract pollinators for a bountiful harvest.

Lavender is beneficial around chamomile, lettuce, brassicas, onions, tomatoes, oregano, thyme, marjoram, sage, rosemary, basil, lemon balm, and squash.

Marigold is a star when it comes to companion planting and you’ll want to sow them almost everywhere. They repel beetles, flies and nematodes. Especially tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, potatoes, alliums, brassicas, and zucchini benefit from proximity to marigolds. Keep them away from beans and cabbage, however.

Nasturtium is like a martyr for your vegetable garden and attracts aphids and other bugs that could care less if there is the tastiest cucumber in your garden so long as they’re allowed to nosh on their nasturtium. Beans, squash, tomatoes, brassicas, radish and cucumbers will benefit from nearby nasturtiums. Do avoid cauliflower though!

Planting Companion Vegetables and Herbs

There are countless combinations when it comes to designing your vegetable garden and you should carefully consider which plants benefit from being near each other or worse, have negative effects on each other’s growth. Here are some popular companion plants for vegetables that thrive in the Carolinas. We recommend checking out a complete companion planting list in your favorite gardening book or on Wikipedia.

Tomatoes: Asparagus, Basil, Beans, Borage, Carrots, Celery, Dill, Lettuce, Melons, Onions, Parsley, Peppers, Radishes, Spinach, Thyme

Peppers: Basil, Coriander, Onions, Spinach, Tomatoes

Cucumbers: Beans, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Corn, Lettuce, Peas, Radishes

Beans: Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Corn, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Peas, Potatoes, Radishes, Squash, Strawberries, Tomatoes

Carrots: Beans, Lettuce, Onions, Peas, Radishes, Rosemary, Sage, Tomatoes

Lettuce: Asparagus, Beets, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Corn, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Onions, Peas, Potatoes, Radishes, Spinach, Strawberries, Sunflowers, Tomatoes

Come visit our Garden Center for vegetable plants, seeds and expert advice!