Most vegetables like plenty of sunshine - six hours or more a day. The problem is that vegetable gardens often end in the backyard, where trees, buildings and other sunshades limit sunlight. To maximize the use of available space, it is helpful to know which vegetables can be grown together. An off the shelf solution is associated planting, and its potential benefits go far beyond space saving. In this article, Savana will show you how to decide which vegetables to grow together and the planting strategies that will benefit your garden.

raised garden bed
Companion planting is a plant partner system. It is not only intended to make full use of all available space, but also to place plants in the most favourable conditions possible. This includes choosing which "friends" to pair with and which "enemies" to keep at arm's length. If done well, companion can improve productivity and help to ward off pests and diseases in the garden.

Factors Affecting Plant Co-growth

When planning which vegetables to grow together, consider the following factors:

Mature Size

Although they may start small, pay attention to the mature size of the plant before planting. Otherwise, one plant may occupy more space than you expect and crowd out other plants. The seed pack can provide you with the information you need to grow. It will tell you the distance of planting, and will suggest how to sprout young plants after germination, so that the remaining plants have enough space to mature. If you are using garden plants instead of seeds, the plant label will provide recommended spacing to help you decide which vegetables can be grown together.

Growth Patterns

Some plants stand upright, such as corn; Some climb, like lentils; Others spread like pumpkins. Native Americans put the three together to maximize space and other rewards. Beans grow on corn stalks and use vertical growth space, while pumpkin vines use horizontal growth space by spreading on the ground. Pumpkin leaves cover weeds and prevent soil from baking and cracking. Once legumes die, their roots disintegrate and replenish the soil nitrogen consumed by corn. When mixing plants, the general rule of thumb is to pair plants with different habits or growth patterns. One example is to pair garlic, which mainly grows underground as a bulb, with spinach, which mainly grows on the ground as a foliage plant.

Growth Rate

As long as a fast-growing plant does not crowd out its companions, it can work by putting slow growing plants and fast-growing plants together. One example is radish, which is a big hare in the plant kingdom. Radishes can mature in only 30 days. On the other hand, carrots may take 70 to 80 days to mature. You can take advantage of fluctuating growth rates by planting radish and carrot seeds together. Once you harvest carrots, they have more room to grow.

Growing Season

Most vegetables fall into one of two categories: cold season or warm season. One aspect of co planting is to plant warm season crops after cold season crops. For example, once the cold season peas grow, the warm season beans have room to grow. There may be some overlap: in late spring, small pepper plants can be planted on lettuce beds. In the hot summer, lettuce is ready to grow moss or seed, so you can pull it out and let the pepper plant take over.

raised garden bed

Vegetables That Grow Well Together

Although some plants grow well, others, such as carrots and dills, do not. Some plants emit a chemical substance that inhibits the growth of nearby plants; Others may attract more pests. On the other hand, highly aromatic plants such as sage or rosemary may distract insects or animal pests from more valuable plants. Garden vegetables that grow well together include:

  • Basil and tomatoes
  • Radish and lettuce
  • Peas and Carrots
  • Pumpkin or pumpkin and corn
  • Beets and onions
  • Potatoes and eggplants

Planting Strategies

In nature, monoculture is rare (except for the occasional poplar forest!). On the contrary, the coexistence of multiple plants makes it more difficult for pests to find target plants and slow down the spread of diseases. Peer planting adopted this strategy. For example, planting marigolds throughout the garden can prevent soil nematodes from harming tomato plants. Clover can distract rabbits from vegetables and increase nitrogen content in the soil. If you are planting in rows, scatter companion plants in each row or place them in adjacent rows. Another idea is to plant in an independent pocket or "community" and surround one plant with another.

Mixing Ornamentals and Edible Plants

A trend worthy of attention is to interplant edible and ornamental plants. One of the reasons for its popularity is that it allows you to start growing agricultural products in the front yard. Even if zoning regulations or homeowners' association rules prohibit forecourt gardens, they are unlikely to prevent you from growing Swiss beets and kale among flowers, or growing chives in rose bushes. The purple leaf lettuce variety is a good edge plant, while a considerable amount of vanilla looks good in a rock garden.

By combining well grown vegetables, you can optimize your garden and make the most of your space.


December 30, 2022

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