Are you searing companion planting with Tomatoes? Yes?
Then you have landed on the right page. Here, I have listed the good & bad companion plants for tomatoes.
Companion plants help each other for maximum growth. It might be a piece of advice from our past generation but companion planting makes gardening easier and grows plants to their best harvest. Also, this is one of the best ways to garden different plants in a small space.
Some herbs, flowers, and vegetables help tomatoes to give a good harvest. Herbs can help to enhance tomato flavor and deter some gardening pests. Flowers attract beneficial pollinators and some vegetables provide good conditions and nutrients.
There are also some plants you should avoid planting next to tomato plants in your own garden. All these we’ll see in this post.
So, let’s get started:
What is companion planting
The method of cultivating plants in a vegetable garden such that they are in close proximity to one another in order for the plants to get benefits from one another is known as companion planting. These mutually beneficial interactions may at times include warding off unwanted pests; at other times, they may facilitate increased plant growth or food output, attract helpful insects and pollinators, or protect against illness.
For example, basil may help cover the smell of tomatoes that are contaminated with thrips, a common insect that affects tomato plants. If you interplant basil with tomato plants, you may help to protect your tomatoes from the thrips that cause stunted development and early fruit loss. Thrips are produced by tiny insects that feed on the sap of plants.
Companion Planting with Tomatoes Benefits
There are a lot of additional advantages to companion planting, despite the fact that pest control is arguably the most common reason gardeners pair particular plants together in the first place. Did you know that there are some kinds of companion planting that may help minimize the number of weeds or diseases in a garden?
In addition, some combinations of plants have the potential to boost soil fertility or structure, promote increased pollination, or attract beneficial insects that feed on pests. Now, let’s keep it simple and concentrate on companion plants that achieve one or more of these criteria for the tomato, which is the most popular garden produce in the world.
Good Companion Plants with Tomatoes
Below is the list of Companion plants you grow with Tomatoes:
- Onion, Garlic, Leeks, and Chives
- Marigold and Calendula
- Sweet alyssum
- Lettuce or Spinach
Basil is not only an excellent tomato companion when served on a plate, but it is also one of the most vital tomato companion plants for the garden. It is particularly effective in warding off thrips and tomato hornworms, which are two of the most common tomato pests.
Traditional methods of companion planting may inform you that this is because the smell of basil wards off these pests; however, there is a good chance that this is not the case. Recent studies have shown that this method is effective because the volatile compounds (odors) emitted by basil plants cover up the aroma of tomato plants, making it more difficult for these pests to discover their host plant, which is the tomato plant.
Tomatoes infected with thrips may have stunted growth and stippling due to the tomato spotted wilt virus, which is transmitted by thrips. Tomato plants can only be identified by their stems after having their leaves devoured by hornworms.
It has been shown that interplanting tomatoes and basil may reduce the amount of egg-laying activity exhibited by adult hornworm moths and the amount of damage caused by thrips.
Related Post: 10 Best Herbs to Grow Indoors (Including Basil)
Just like basil, this herb also increases the flavor of tomatoes and attracts hoverflies which are beneficial insects to fight against pests like aphids, thrills, and caterpillars. In return, the tomato plant provides partial shade to Parsley.
Hoverflies are attracted to parsley, and hoverflies feed on aphids, which are a threat to tomato plants. You may also use parsley as a trap crop to entice aphids away from your tomatoes so that you can continue growing them. It is important to perform a thorough study before purchasing tomatoes since not all tomato types pair nicely with parsley.
Onion, Garlic, Leeks, and Chives
Plant these allium family herbs to protect your tomato plant from insect pests like aphids, carrots flies, ants, and flea beetles. You would also be able to crop the green onion, spring garlic, garlic scape, and chives for cooking, giving flavor to food.
One thing to keep in mind is that chives are invasive and can spread in the whole garden by self-seed. So, it’s a good idea to remove flowers before they go to seeds. But also, chive’s bloom attracts bees and some beneficial insects that help in pollination.
Related post: 5 Tips to Grow, Care, and Harvest Chives at Home
Borages are planted to deter tomato hornworms and some soft body pests like larvae or aphids. When grown in close proximity to tomatoes, borage (Borago officinalis) is an ideal companion plant since it discourages the growth of tomato hornworms, an insect that is considered a serious problem by many tomato farmers. In addition, the beautiful blue blooms of this plant, which resemble the blossoms of tomato plants, provide a lovely decorative addition to the garden.
Borage flowers also attract beneficial pollinators like bees and freely spread in the garden by self-seed. Its flowers are annuals that look like wildflowers but benefit the garden.
Its flowers taste like pepper on salads. Nasturtium may self-seed and freely take over the garden, but it repels insects like aphids, whitefly, and beetles.
Although Calendula flowers look different from marigolds, Calendula belongs to the same family as marigolds (Tagetes) from Asteraceae.
Both plant flowers are edible, but calendula flowers are commonly used for medicinal purposes and essential oils.2.
Marigold and Calendula
Planting marigolds and calendula will repel insects like bad nematodes, aphids, tomato hornworms, mosquitoes, thrips, whiteflies, and beetles.
Plus they also attract beneficial pollinators like bees and decorate gardens with their beautiful blooms throughout summer.
Marigold is an annual plant that grows better in warm climates whereas calendula is a cold-hardy. Calendula is not perennial in the cold area but it spreads freely in the garden and can grow in cool spring or fall if there is no snow.
You will find marigold and calendula seedlings popped up in the spring. Simply, transplant (you may pluck) where you need them, and they will grow fine up to early frost.
Many gardeners plant sweet alyssum closer to a tomato plant. It has a sweet fragrance and spreading habit. It will keep the soil moist that tomato plants need without being soggy.
Sweet alyssums are a shot-growing plant that attracts beneficial insects and pollinators for tomatoes.
keep in mind that sweet alyssum can spread freely around the garden by self-seeds and its flowers also attract flue beetles so you have to plunk some seedlings in the spring.
Because of their self spreading without taking over the entire garden, makes sweet alyssum is an excellent plant for edging in the garden.
You can keep flea beetles away from your tomato plants by planting radish around the base of the plants. Because flea beetles don’t go very far, the tomato companion plants you choose need to be planted right next to your tomato crop for this strategy to be effective.
Flea beetles have a strong preference for radish foliage as opposed to tomato foliage, and they will eat gaping holes in the radish leaves rather than damaging immature tomato plants. Flea beetles may do a fair amount of harm to mature tomato plants, but new transplants are far more susceptible to their attacks. Another fantastic option for a sacrifice crop to use in the fight against flea beetles is Pac Choi.
When carrots are planted next to tomato plants, the soil is broken up more easily. Even if they don’t grow quite as big as they should because they were planted too tightly together, carrots won’t lose their delicious flavor.
Spinach and Lettuce
Spinach also grows well in cold weather. Plant it in the early spring or early fall with extra protection from frost. When spinach goes to seeds or bolts in the heat, tomato plants provide shade and prevent spinach to go bolting early. Just like spinach lettuce also grows in cold weather and space saver before it’s time to plant tomato. Tomato plants provide them shade in the garden.
Cucumbers create various growth-inhibiting allelochemicals, the best researched of which is cinnamic acid, which you may find surprising to read about. When cultivated as a dense groundcover or living mulch around taller crops such as maize, tomatoes, and okra, cucumbers may be used as a technique for weed control due to their ability to suppress weed growth.
They also cast a shadow on weed seeds, which inhibits their ability to germinate. If you are beginning your partner crops from seeds, you should not use these plants as companions for your tomatoes; but, if you are starting with transplants rather than seeds, they make excellent companions.
If you have problems with pests like yellow-striped armyworms in your garden, thyme is an excellent option as a companion plant for tomatoes. Interplanting tomato plants with thyme or basil, as the case may be, was discovered by researchers at Iowa State University to result in a decrease in the amount of egg-laying by adult armyworm.
The use of thyme as a live mulch around tomato plants is highly recommended. Please remember, since it is a perennial, the plants will need to be relocated whenever the tomato plants are moved to a different location in the garden throughout each growing season.
The southern green stink bug loves cowpeas more than any other food. Your tomato crop will be saved from severe harm if you grow cowpeas in close proximity to it. This is due to the fact that cowpeas attract green stink bugs away from tomatoes. The green stink bug is a pest that is mostly a problem in the southern regions of the United States.
It feeds on a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, which may cause the flesh to become shriveled and corky. Cowpeas should be sown several weeks in advance of planting tomatoes since stink bugs are strong flyers and should be planted at a distance of several feet from tomato plants.
Bad Companion plants for Tomatoes
Vegetables like Cabbage, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and Kohlrabi belong to the Brassica family. These vegetables inhibit tomato growth.
Corn attracts “Tomato hornworm” or “Corn earworm”. They also compete for moisture from tomato plants which makes it difficult to both plants to thrive.
Fennel and Dill
Young dill does fine next to tomato plants but it’s better to harvest before they grow mature. Fennel and dill inhibit the growth of tomato plants.
This root vegetable belongs to the same family as tomatoes. Potatoes are susceptible to early and late blight.
Peppers or chills attract whiteflies that are not good for tomatoes.
Did I Miss Anything?
Now I’d like to hear from you: which companion plant from today’s post are you going to try first? Or maybe, I didn’t mention your favorite plant. Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.
Before going if you want to grow beautiful flowers in your garden? Then click on these articles also.