Companion Planting - Homesteadgarden


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Companion Planting - Homesteadgarden

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Companion Planting - Homesteadgarden

  1. 1. HomesteadGardenCompanion PlantingCompanion plantings of some kind have been practiced throughout agricultural history. Some of the earliest writtendocuments on gardening discuss these relationships.Early settlers discovered American First Nations people were using an interplanting scheme of corn-bean-squash thatbalanced the requirements of each crop for light, water, and nutrients. In the 1800’s, hemp (cannabis) was often plantedaround a cabbage field to keep away the white cabbage butterflies in Holland. In many parts of the world today,subsistence farmers and organic gardeners grow two or more crops simultaneously in a given area to achieve a certainbenefit.Companion planting is the practice of locating particular plants near one another because they enhance plant growth,discourage pests and diseases, or have some other beneficial effect. When selecting your companion plants considermore than which pests are deterred. Think about what each plant adds or takes away from the soil and what effect theproximity of strong herbs may have on the flavour of your vegetables. Avoid placing two heavy feeders or two shallowrooted plant types near each other.Many gardeners find that they can discourage harmful pests, without losing the beneficial allies, when they usecompanion planting as an important part of an integrated pest management system. For example, chives or garlicplanted between rows of peas or lettuce help control aphids. Marigolds planted throughout the garden discourage manyinsects. Rosemary, thyme, sage, catmint, hyssop, or mixtures of all three between rows of cabbage helps deter the whitecabbage moth. Horseradish planted at the corners of potato patches deters the potato beetle. Garlic planted near rosesrepels aphids and Nasturtium planted around the garden also deters aphids.As the limitations and ill effects of pesticides, chemical fertilisers, and other modern practices become more apparent,scientists and researchers have begun to look at the ‘old-fashioned’ method of gardening and farming. Companionplanting can combine beauty and purpose to give you an enjoyable, healthy environment. In essence, companionplanting allows us to help bring a balanced eco-system to our landscapes, allowing Nature to do its’ job.Gwen Nyhus Stewart, B.S.W., M.G., H.T., is an educator, freelance writer, garden consultant, and author of the book TheHealing Garden: A Place Of Peace – Gardening For The Soil, Gardening For The Soul and booklet Non-toxic AlternativesFor Everyday Cleaning And Gardening Chores. She owns the website Gwen’s Healing Garden where you will find lots offree information about gardening for the soil and gardening for the soul. To find out more about the book and subscribeto her free Newsletter visit Powered by Joomla! Generated: 14 November, 2012, 03:51