What Vegetables Should Not Be Planted Next To Each Other
Companion planting is not an exact science, and the reason why some plants get along while others do not is not always clear. To numerous gardeners and farmers, trial and error has shown that some plants certainly do not make good neighbors. Several reasons dictate why vegetables should be planted together and apart. The issues include cross-contamination, release of certain compounds and excessive shade cast by taller plants over smaller neighbors.
PLANNING YOUR GARDEN
Small gardens require vegetables to be planted close together, so making sure they get along is essential. Even in larger gardens, spacing your plants is extremely important because of water, nutrient and pest control. According to Duane Newcomb, author of “The Backyard Vegetable Factory,” conventional advice is based on science, but trial and error or experimentation often yields the best result. Depending on the size of your garden or container and the list of vegetables you want to plant, you may have to experiment a little to know exactly which ones make good neighbors.
BAD PLANT COMBINATIONS
Plants release varying amounts of compounds, such as nitrogen and potassium, which can stunt the growth of other plants by altering the pH level of the soil. You can easily test your soils PH level with this handy tool: MoonCity 3-in-1 Soil Moisture, Light and pH / acidity Meter Plant Tester,Good for Gardener or planter both indoor and outdoors (No Battery needed)
While cucumbers thrive when planted near bush beans, lettuce and radishes, they choke when planted near potatoes. Beans, beets, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, corn, cucumbers and strawberries make good neighbors — as long as you plant the onions, garlic, leeks and shallots elsewhere.
Peppers do well with carrots, eggplant, onions, parsley and tomatoes, but do not plant kohlrabi anywhere near them. Keep lettuce away from cabbage and keep onions away from asparagus, beans and peas. Spinach gets along with everyone.
Another reason to keep selected vegetable plants separate is because of common pests, fungal and bacterial infections and parasites, which can easily spread from one plant to another. Keep corn and tomatoes separate because they are both prone to a common fungal infection. This way, if your tomatoes become infected, it will not take down your corn crop. The same holds true for potatoes and tomatoes and peppers and potatoes. Keep these plants on opposite sides of your garden.
SHADE VS. SUN
Planting tall, towering plants over smaller, ground-dwelling, sun-loving plants shields the smaller plants from much-needed sunlight. If you have limited space, pair plants that thrive in shade or partial shade, and plant these vegetables near your taller, companion plants. For instance, you can plant pumpkins between rows of corn. Pumpkins and corn are companion plants. Both plants need full sun during early growth, but as the corn matures and towers over the pumpkins, it creates partial shade and a respite from the hot sun.
Do not put pumpkin seeds in the corn planter. Pumpkins spread out into the rows of corn and create a problem when weeding corn rows with machines. They are prolific. They can be planted in smaller gardens, where they are weeded by hand.