I’ve been reading and researching about companion planting this year. Now that I’m feeling confident in the garden, I knew it was time to amp it up as far as learning more about what kinds of plants will attract beneficial insects and also repel harmful insects (Integrated Pest Management). Being an organic gardener, it’s wise to utilize annuals, perennials and herbs alongside your veggies to help them produce and deter harmful insects that will destroy your crop that you have worked so hard for. Companion planting helps your garden become a balanced ecosystem, in which nature keeps itself in balance. It will attract more bees to pollinate and birds to munch on harmful insects. So far in my garden I’ve planted Zinnias, Geraniums, Marigolds, Nasturtiums, Chamomile and still need to add a variety of herbs. Not only was I thinking about Integrated Pest Management but the beautiful array of colors that my annuals will produce. I can’t wait to see what it will finally look like come mid/late June.
I thought it would be helpful to share what I have learned by providing a list of the best plants and herbs to help you on your way to Companion Planting.
Deters most insects
Basil repels white fly and makes a good companion to tomatoes, in the garden & the kitchen. Use 3 basil plants to each tomato plant. Basil also repels flies and mosquitoes, so useful in kitchen, outdoor barbecues. Don’t plant near rue. Deters tomato hornworm, aphids, flies and mosquitoes. Slows growth of milkweed bugs and acts as a fungicide.Borage – Deters tomato worm – improves growth and flavor of tomatoes
Plant with strawberries to increase crop. Also good with tomatoes and squash. Attracts bees to the garden. Deters tomato worms, attracts bees, helps growth and flavor.
Calendula (Pot Marigold)
Deters asparagus beetles, tomato worms and general garden pests
Deters flea beetle
White cabbage butterfly
Improves growth and flavor of onions and cabbages.
Deters most insects
Deters potato bug – improves growth and flavor of potatoes
Deters Colorado potato beetle
Repels fleas, so grow it around dog kennel.
Deters potato bug
Deters Japanese beetle – other insects and blight
Deters most insects. Plant near roses, grapes and corn. Repels cabbage worm. Oil of geranium prevents red spider mite.
Plant at corners of potato patch to deter potato bug
General insect repellant
Deters cabbage moth, white butterflies, good insect repellant
Lavender bags repel mice, ticks and moths.
The workhouse of the pest deterrents. Plant throughout garden to discourage Mexican bean beetles, nematodes and other insects.
Deters white cabbage moth and ants
Good insect repellent. Deters aphids, squash bugs, striped pumpkin beetles
Deters most pests
Plant near broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower to repel cabbage butterfly and near cucumbers to repel cucumber beetle. Also benefits grapes.
Planted among cabbages, it repels the white cabbage butterfly
Especially deters cucumber beetle
Deters cabbage moth, bean beetle and carrot fly
Deters Japanese Beetle
Deters cabbage moth, carrot fly
Repels carrot fly
Deters cabbage moth
Deters bean beetles
Deters flying insects, Japanese beetles, striped cucumber beetles, squash bugs, ants
Deters cabbage worm
Carrot fly, white cabbage butterfly, black flea beetle