Vegetables and Herbs and Other Plants Like Companions


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Vegetables and Herbs and Other Plants Like Companions

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Vegetables and Herbs and Other Plants Like Companions

  1. 1. VEGETABLES AND HERBS AND OTHER PLANTS LIKE COMPANIONS The garden plot is ready; the soil is rich and inviting, hopefully because it also includes compostmade in your backyard. Your mind is full of visions of beautifully grown vegetables and herbs that youwill be able to use in your recipes for cooking or teas or whatever. You are determined to grow thesewonderful plants without the use of chemicals and to really do everything as “green” as possible. Yourvegetable garden will be a wonder to behold, a subject to discuss and show to your friends and sharewith your companions. You are ready to get started on all of the above and can’t wait for the warmfeelings of satisfaction you will feel when all is growing just as you envision. You have thought ofeverything….but wait, have you really thought of everything? What about the companions for all ofyour vegetables and herbs as well as the plants that will keep the pests at bay. And I am not talkingabout the scarecrow carefully constructed for the garden plot. Plants, like people, thrive oncompanionship and will actually grow better when in the company of certain other plants. Some plantswill repel harmful insects in your garden and others will actually enhance the flavor and growth of theircompanion. Others are more or less enemies and it is best to keep them apart!! All of this is a conceptknown as “Companion Planting” and it is a simple, wonderful concept to be incorporated into yourvegetable garden. Companion Planting is not a new concept. If you research it on the internet you will find some sitesthat tell you not to believe in it as there is very little scientific evidence that it is true. You will also readabout farmers who have used the concept for years and still do today. Farmers didn’t have computersand web sites to go to years ago to learn what to do and what not to do. They relied on observation andexperience and we are lucky enough today to be able to benefit from their many years of experience.Sometimes scientific evidence isn’t necessary to know something is good and I think companion plantingis just such an example. I use it in my own garden and by observation, I learned it works. Combining your herbs and vegetables works really well. Some examples of this are as follows: Basilplanted with tomatoes will improve growth and flavor of the tomato. It also does well with peppers.Carrots love tomatoes as well as leaf lettuce and onions. But for heaven sakes do not plant dill next tocarrots as they are not happy companions! Dill on the other hand improves growth and health ofcabbage and is the best friend of lettuce. Dill may even work to repel the squash bugs. It also attractsthe tomato horn worm! You may want to plant geraniums with your cabbage for beauty of course butmainly because it repels cabbage worms and Japanese beetles. Corn, runner beans and squashcomprise a group called, “Three sister planting” which was actually done by Native Americans in the1600’s! The corn grows tall providing the support for the runner bean which does not compete withthe corn plus in addition provides its own nitrogen. The squash creates a dense cover that shades outweeds which could affect the corn and the beans. The squash also keeps insects at bay for the corn andthe beans. Cabbage loves celery, dill, onions and potatoes and in fact it is said that celery will improvethe growth and health of the cabbage. At the same time, do not plant cabbage with strawberries,tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, lettuce or pole beans as they are not fond of each other. Lettuce is agood vegetable to plant around okra plants as the okra will offer shade to the lettuce when the sun is
  2. 2. really hot. Okra does well with peppers and eggplants and gets along really well with basil, cucumbersand melons. A very good “workhorse” for the garden is the radish. Companions for radishes are beets, bushbeans, pole beans, carrots, chervil, cucumber, lettuce, melons, nasturtium, parsnips, peas, spinach andmembers of the squash family. Radishes when planted with your pumpkins and other squash mayprotect them from squash borers. Remember to plant marigolds, and nasturtiums for pretty ways todeter bugs and beetles in your garden. Also remember the bug repelling qualities of garlic and onionsbut make sure they are companions with their neighbors! Your soil is ready, and so are you and now it is time to plan where your plants will go to enhance eachother, deter bugs and promote the best flavor in everything! Enjoy, observe, record what does well foryou and by all means share the information with your companions. Who knows, maybe even the plantslisten!!!!!!! For more information or if you have questions, kindly email vigoro@vigoro.kySubmitted by Nancy RohlederVigoro Nursery Ltd.February 16, 2012