Let plants help you increase your production, keep moisture in your soil and control bugs! Companion planting skills are important to develop if you want to make the most of your garden space, or if you want to be a lazy gardener!
What is companion planting? It is the ability to combine plants that help each other or to avoid growing certain plants side by side that don’t seem to get along for some reason.
Helpful companions can enhance vigor, growth, flavor, or at least one of the companions will benefit from the presence of the other. For example, basil is known to enhance the flavor of tomatoes and lettuces. Members of the Brassica family such as cabbage, kohlrabi, and broccoli, tend to inhibit tomatoes’ growth.
Marigolds are well known for their ability to attract beneficial insects, repel undesirable insects and control soil nematodes. Many gardeners plant them among their crops or at the end of their aisles.
Companion planting is not just about bug control, it can also be about water preservation, and weed control. Companions can work in all types of growing space, tall sun loving plants can be used to create shade and a moist environment for shorter plants that like a more humid area.
Alternating planting is another way of companion planting. Growing legumes as a cover crop will contribute to replenishing nitrogen in the soil after growing vegetables.