Companion Planting: 11 Herbs to Help Your Garden Grow


| 10/21/2010 3:49:30 PM


L. HoltMaybe you’re just starting to think about gardening, getting an early start on new spring additions to your garden, or debating how to best nurture your herbs through the winter months. Perhaps you’re frustrated with how things turned out this year or worried about future threats to your healthy plants. Whatever your state of mind or the state of your garden, you may want to consider the benefits of companion planting in the future. I don’t even have a garden in my tiny apartment, and I find the concept fascinating.

Companion planting can be an efficient and natural way to protect your garden from pests and promote healthy, glowing growth in all your herbs, vegetables and flowers. Some plants benefit the soil, while others may deter specific pests and diseases or enhance the flavors of fruits and vegetables. Herbs are particularly valuable in the context of trap planting because they can both discourage pests and attract beneficial insects such as ladybugs, bees and butterflies.

10-21-2010-2 
Tomatoes grow alongside basil and purple-podded peas.
Photo by Cpt. Obvious/courtesy Flickr

http://www.flickr.com/photos/cpt_obvious/ 

When designing your garden, be sure to keep the specific needs of each plant in mind. Often, companion planting is a composition of opposites in terms of shade needs, soil nutrient absorption, depth of root growth, aroma, and speed of growth. Also know that depending on conditions and climate, the following combinations may not be entirely successful. Spacing, relative plant ratios and manner of planting can be very important, and some plants should not be grown near each other. Also, the effects of companion planting are often subtle, and a major pest problem is likely to require other methods. As most companion pairings are not scientifically supported experimentation is the only way to find the best companion herbs for your gardening needs.  Here are some general traditional guidelines to get you started.

Basil: Basil can benefit the growth petunias and the flavors of tomatoes, asparagus, peppers and oregano; it should not be planted near common rue or sage. To increase the essential oils in your basil, plant chamomile or anise.



Borage: Borage acts as a deterrent to tomato hornworms and cabbage worms and is known to attract bees and wasps. It also improves soil composition and helps any plants near it be more resistant to both pests and disease. Plant borage with strawberries, tomatoes or squash to enhance both the flavor and amount of your fruit or vegetable harvest.



Subscribe today and save 58%

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living !

Mother Earth LivingWelcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $19.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $24.95.




Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds