Companion Planting 

What is Companion Planting 

One of the number one best things you can do in your garden to increase its health and success, is companion planting. Companion planting is the practice of planting certain vegetables, flowers, and fruits together that benefit each other’s health. It is an important tool that allows you to naturally deter pests without the need for heavy chemicals. All plants have different properties, whether it’s the ability to ward off pests, like the pungent onion, or attract pollinators, like Bee Balm. Companion planting also allows you to plant certain vegetables together that have different soil needs, which allows them to thrive naturally together. For those who are interested in organic gardening, it’s a tool you’ll want to learn how to utilize. Check out our 2024 garden planner for our companion planting chart!

Companion Planting in History 

Companion planting has been around in the Americas for hundreds of years. One of the most popular and well known companion planting methods is the Three Sisters method, which was developed by the indigenous peoples of America and is hundreds of years old. The Three Sisters method is a growing technique that involves growing corn, beans, and squash all together. The corn grows tall and provides a trellis for the beans, the beans fix nitrogen into the soil that benefits the squash and the corn, and the broad leaves of the squash shade the soil around the base of each plant, keeping weeds in check and the soil moist. It’s one of the best examples of companion planting, but definitely not the only one that works! Let’s cover some others. 

Shallots in a metal bowl


The allium family includes some of our favorite aromatic vegetables including onions, shallots, leeks, garlic, and chives. Alliums make great companion plants for most vegetables in your garden, because of their pungent smell that deters many common garden pests. They are a powerhouse companion plant! If you have some pests that need a heavier hand, try this garlic spray recipe that we’ve outlined in our how to grow series. Just scroll to the section on pests.  

Plants that love to be planted with alliums 

  • Carrots 
  • Beets
  • Radish 
  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers

What not to Plant with Alliums 

  • Asparagus 
  • Beans
girl holding a bunch of carrots

Root Vegetables 

Root vegetables are a staple in many people’s gardens, and for good reason. Nothing tastes quite as lovely as a freshly picked carrot. Sweet, crunchy, and just oh so good. But root veggies have some pests that can be pretty pesky. These include the Carrot Fly, Aphids, Flea Beetles, and more. As you’ve read above, alliums are a great solution for warding off these unwanted pests, so definitely prioritize planting a few in your root veggie beds. But there are a few other vegetables that love to be planted near root vegetables, Including greens, because of the complimentary root depths. Lettuces have shallow root systems, so planting vegetables like carrots with them allows you to use your garden bed space to its full potential. 

Plants that Love to be Planted with Root Veggies

  • Lettuce 
  • Oregano 
  • Marigold 
  • Kale 
  • Alliums including onion, chive, garlic, and leek 

What not to Plant with Root Veggies

  • Root vegetables go with most other vegetables in your garden, but some of them aren’t the best to plant together. For example, carrots and parsnips attract  some of the same pests and can therefore both be affected by insects like the carrot root fly, so it’s best to plant them in separate beds. 
tomatoes in the dirt


Tomatoes are a staple in the garden and for good reason. They are the star of many recipes and when eaten fresh off the vine on a slice of sourdough with garlic and olive oil… chefs kiss. Tomatoes are generally easy to grow, but they have some plants they love to be planted with and some they really don’t. Tomatoes have some classic pests like the Horn Worm that are very common, but there are some awesome companion plants that can help with that, like marigolds! There are also companion plants like basil that can actually improve your tomato’s flavor. How cool!

Plants that Tomatoes Love to be Planted With

  • Basil
  • French Marigold 
  • Borage 
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Lavender 

 What not to Plant with Tomatoes

  • Brassicas 
  • Cucumbers
  • Potatoes 
  • Corn
  • Dill
  • Fennel
green bell peppers on the bush


If you live in a warmer climate, don’t skip growing peppers. There is such a wide variety of spicy, sweet, and super interesting peppers to grow. Truly something for everyone. Peppers have many good companion plants including some delicious herbs!

Plants that Peppers Love to be Planted With

  • Alliums including onion, chive, garlic, and leek 
  • Herbs Including Dill, Basil, and Cilantro 
  • Radish
  • Sweet Alyssum 
  • Borage 
  • Carrots 

 What not to Plant with Peppers

  • Avoid brassicas of any kind including broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower as they have many of the same needs as peppers and attract pests that can damage your peppers.
lettuce being watered in a garden bed


Chances are you’ll be wanting to grow some greens in your garden this year. Greens like lettuce and kale are wonderful additions to your garden. Most greens are fast growing, so you can also succession plant most of your greens for a continuous harvest. There are some common pests for greens, including aphids, so be sure to plant some alliums in your beds to ward off unwanted pests. You can also plant some trap crops all around your garden to help with any pest problem as well, like Sweet Alyssum!

Plants that Greens Love to be Planted With

  • Alliums including onion, chive, garlic, and leek 
  • Radish
  • Dill
  • Carrots
  • Cucumber 
  • Peas
  • Nasturtium
  • Squash  
  • Zucchini 

 What not to Plant with Greens 

  • Although Kale is in the brassica family, planting with other brassicas including broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower so they don’t compete. 
chamomile flowers in a hand

Best Flowers For Companion Planting 

One of the very best ways to naturally control the pest population in your garden is by using native flowers that attract pollinators. They can act as a trap crop and draw in beneficial insects that eat many unwanted pests like aphids. Most of these flowers are edible in their own right and can be planted with pretty much everything in your garden. Not to mention they are all absolutely gorgeous. Some flowers that are particularly good for your garden include… 

  • Sweet Alyssum 
  • Borage
  • Chamomile 
  • Bee Balm
  • Lavender
  • Yarrow
  • Nasturtium 
  • Sunflowers
  • French Marigold

Trap Crops: What are They? 

You may have heard the term trap crop before and wondered what it meant. Well, it’s exactly what it sounds like. A trap crop is a sacrificial plant that you put around your garden to attract unwanted insects away from the other crops you want to stay healthy. For example, you may love growing beans every year, but the Japanese beetles decimate them. By planting a raspberry bush nearby, you can attract the Japanese beetles away from your other crops, because they are more attracted to the raspberries. Many flowers you plant in your garden will also act as trap crops, like sweet alyssum!

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