Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (2024)

Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (1)

Companion planting is all about creating plant communities which have mutual benefits to each other. It can be an organic way to protect your crops from pests or it could help improve pollination of fruit and vegetable crops. Although there is limited scientific research surrounding companion gardening, many gardeners find it extremely beneficial to their plant’s performance. In this article we've put together the best known partnerships in flowers, herbs and vegetables to help you improve the health of your garden plants without needing to resort to pesticides. Take a look at our companion planting chart below.

Companion planting hints and tips

  1. Avoid monocultures. This is where the same type of plant is grown en masse or in rows. Monoculture makes it much easier for pests and diseases to find their favourite plants and then spread quickly.
  2. Use tall plants such as peas or sweet corn to create partially shaded conditions for crops prone to bolting, such as coriander, lettuce and spinach.
  3. Plant herbs throughout the garden and vegetable plot, as most have strongly scented leaves which help repel insects.
  4. Try intercropping. This is where fast-growing crops such as lettuce or radishes are sown between widely spaced rows of slower-growing crops such as Brussels Sprouts or parsnips. It utilises the space available and helps prevent weeds growing (weeds take nutrients, light and water, and spread disease).
  5. Plant lots of insect-friendly or bird-friendly plants, either amongst your crops or nearby. They attract natural predators such as birds which eat slugs, hoverflies which eat aphids and bees which pollinate your crops. For a list of wildlife-friendly plants click here.
  6. Take care with some companion plants such as mint - these are fast-growing plants and will quickly smother your crop. Grow mint in containers to keep it under control.

Companion planting chart

Companion plant 1Companion plant 2How does it work
Cabbage, kale, cauliflowerNasturtiumPlant Nasturtiums as a sacrificial crop. Cabbage white butterflies will lay their eggs on Nasturtium plants, keeping caterpillars away from your Brassicas.
Cabbage, kale, cauliflowerMintMint helps to deter flea beetles, which chew irregular holes in the leaves.
CourgetteCalendula (English Marigold)Calendula flowers are highly attractive to pollinating insects which will in turn pollinate your courgette flowers.
Broad beansSummer savorySummer savory helps to repel blackfly, a common pest of broads beans.
CarrotSpring onionsSow spring onions amongst your carrots - the smell of onion deters carrot root fly. The smell of carrots also deters onion fly from onions.
CarrotLeekThe smell of leeks deters carrot root fly. The smell of carrots also helps deter leek moth from leeks.
CarrotMintThe aromatic leaves of mint help confuse carrot root fly, who find their host through scent.
ChrysanthemumChivesThe onion scent will deter aphids.
French /Runner beansNasturtiumPlant Nasturtiums as a sacrificial crop - aphids love them and this will lure them away from your runner beans/French beans.
OnionMintThe aromatic leaves of mint help to confuse and deter onion fly.
RadishMintMint helps to deter flea beetles, which chew irregular holes in the leaves.
RosesGarlicThe smell of garlic helps to deter aphids.
RosesMint, Chives , ThymeThe strong scent of these herbs deters aphids and blackfly.
Runner beansSweet peasSweet peas will attract pollinating insects which will in turn help to pollinate your bean flowers.
SunflowerChivesThe onion scent will deter aphids.
TomatoesMintThe smell of mint deters aphids and other pests.
TomatoesFrench Marigold (Tagetes patula)The pungent smell of French marigolds deters whitefly.
TomatoesChivesThe onion scent will deter aphids.
TomatoesBasilBasil reportedly improves tomato flavour and the strong scent of their leaves also deters aphids. A perfect partnership in the kitchen too!

Quick Links:

  • Encourage wildlife to your garden
  • Plants for wildlife
  • Garden pests and diseases

Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (2)

Plant flowers such as Calendula or cornflowers amongst your crops to attract pollinating insects, which will help the flowers set fruit.

Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (3)

Sow spring onions amongst your carrots - the smell of onion deters carrot root fly. The smell of carrots also deters onion fly from onions.

Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (4)

The pungent smell of French marigolds deters whitefly from your tomato plants.

Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (5)

Written by: Sue Sanderson

Plants and gardens have always been a big part of my life. I can remember helping my Dad to prick out seedlings, even before I could see over the top of the potting bench. As an adult, I trained at Writtle College where I received my degree, BSc. (Hons) Horticulture. After working in a specialist plantsman's nursery, and later, as a consulting arboriculturalist, I joined Thompson & Morgan in 2008. Initially looking after the grounds and coordinating the plant trials, I now support the web team offering horticultural advice online.

Companion Planting Guide | Thompson & Morgan (2024)


How far apart do you plant companion plants? ›

In general, plants with known positive relationships should be planted within two or three rows of each other. Plants that have negative or detrimental relationships, should be planted at least two to three rows apart.

What vegetables should you plant next to each other? ›

Which Vegetables Grow Well Together?
VegetableCompanion PlantDon't Plant Together
MelonsCorn, pumpkin, radish, squashNone
OnionsBeets, carrots, Swiss chard, lettuce, peppersAll beans and peas
PeasBeans, carrots, corn, cucumbers, radish, turnipGarlic, onions
PotatoesBeans, corn, peasTomatoes
11 more rows
Jun 26, 2021

What plants grow well together chart? ›

Vegetables and Herbs Companion Planting Chart
PlantGood Together
PotatoBush Bean, Cabbage, Carrot, Corn, Horseradish, Onion, Parsnip, Peas
RadishBeet, Bush Beans, Pole Beans, Carrots, Cucumber, Lettuce, Parsnip, Peas, Spinach, Squash
SpinachCelery, Corn, Eggplant, Cauliflower
SquashCorn, Onion, Radish
15 more rows

What herbs should not be planted near each other? ›

Examples of herbs that do not grow well together include chamomile and dill, dill and fennel, and basil and rue. It's best to research the specific herbs if you plan to grow and their compatibilities before planting them together. Mint does not get along with anything.

What happens if you plant plants too close together? ›

If you plant flowers too close together, the plants get stressed and are prone to diseases, Kole says. If air can't properly circulate and the plants can't dry out between waterings, fungus sets in. Roots can rot. And once plants are weakened from stress, insects move in.

What 3 vegetables grow well together? ›

Companion Planting Chart
Type of VegetableFriends
CabbageBeets, celery, chard, lettuce, spinach, onions
CarrotsBeans, lettuce, onions, peas, peppers, tomatoes
CornClimbing beans, cucumber, marjoram, peas, pumpkins, squash, sunflowers, zucchini
OnionsCabbage, carrots, chard, lettuce, peppers, tomatoes
12 more rows

What should you not plant next to tomatoes? ›

Companion Plants To Avoid Growing Near Tomatoes
  • Brassicas. Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, and kohlrabi can stunt the growth of your tomato plant because they out-compete them for the same nutrients. ...
  • Corn. ...
  • Fennel. ...
  • Dill. ...
  • Potatoes. ...
  • Eggplant. ...
  • Walnuts.
Feb 1, 2022

What is a good layout for a vegetable garden? ›

As a general rule, put tall veggies toward the back of the bed, mid-sized ones in the middle, and smaller plants in the front or as a border. Consider adding pollinator plants to attract beneficial insects that can not only help you get a better harvest, but will also prey on garden pests.

What are the best 3 plants to grow together? ›

Companion Planting – What Grows Best Next To Each Other
  • Lettuce. ...
  • Summer Squash/Zucchini. ...
  • Carrots. ...
  • Radishes. ...
  • Sweet Corn. ...
  • Potatoes. ...
  • Peas. Friends: Peas love to be planted by beans, carrots, corn, cucumbers, radish, and turnip. ...
  • Beets. Friends: Beets grow well next to bush beans, cabbage family plants, lettuce, and onions.
Mar 30, 2024

What not to plant with peppers? ›

There's really no evidence that certain plants will somehow affect pepper growth, but you may want to avoid planting peppers near cabbage and other brassicas such as broccoli and cauliflower (because peppers prefer slightly different soil acidity levels) and fennel (which some gardeners say inhibits pepper development) ...

What not to plant near cucumbers? ›

Aromatic Herbs: Herbs like sage and rosemary, while useful in cooking, can inhibit the growth of cucumbers. They contain natural oils that can slow down the growth of cucumber plants. Brassicas: Plants like broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower can compete with cucumbers for the same nutrients in the soil.

What not to plant next to zucchini? ›

Potatoes can also spread diseases such as late blight, which can also affect zucchinis. Cucumbers and pumpkins should not be planted next to zucchinis as they belong to the same family (Cucurbitaceae) and therefore attract similar pests and diseases.

What not to plant near marigolds? ›

Marigold companion planting enhances the growth of basil, broccoli, cabbage, cucumbers, eggplant, gourds, kale, potatoes, squash and tomatoes. Marigold also makes a good companion plant to melons because it deters beetles. Beans and cabbage are listed as bad companion plants for marigolds.

How close can you plant veggies together? ›

The 4-inch spacing is for bush beans and spinach. A 6-inch spacing is needed for Swiss chard, leaf lettuce and parsley. A whole 12-inch square is required for each broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, corn, eggplant, muskmelon and pepper plant.

How far apart do plants need to be to not cross pollinate? ›

To prevent cross-pollination between compatible types or varieties, they need to be separated by a distance of one-half to one mile. The presence of barriers such as large buildings, a thick stand of trees, or a hill can inhibit pollinator movement and allow for shorter isolation distances.

Is it OK for plants to touch each other? ›

So the short answer is no, houseplants should not touch each other. Now let's discover more about why your houseplants prefer a solo existence or if there are rare occasions when grouping them together is better for their well-being.

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