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The Benefits of Companion Planting


Companion planting refers to interplanting different crops close together for mutual advantage. Some plants repel pests, while others aid with growth or increase garden aesthetics.

Corn, beans, and peas provide mutual benefits–peas provide nitrogen to corn while sturdy corn stalks act as natural trellises for peas. Other examples include spinach and lettuce which provide shady conditions to support pea plants.


Peas are an ideal companion crop to help corn flourish, providing plenty of nitrogen for healthy growth and protecting it from pests and disease. When planted early in spring, their rapid growth provides required nitrogen.

As the weather warms up, pea plants will provide shade for corn plants to prevent them from being sunburnt by direct sunlight. They’ll also benefit from sharing nitrogen from corn roots, which is essential to their development; plus, they can even be harvested early before the corn has reached maturity for fresh garden peas!

Beans (particularly pole beans) make an excellent companion plant for corn. As part of the Three Sisters garden method – which originated with Native Americans – interplanting corn, beans, and squash together can bring mutually beneficial results; in particular, fixing nitrogen into the soil while their sprawling vines help prevent weed growth while providing additional moisture retention benefits to corn.

Cauliflower should not be planted near peas as its high nitrogen needs can cause it to become stunted and less productive, while root rot can occur more readily when near peas. Fennel is also not an appropriate companion plant as its tall, feathery leaves cast too much shade onto corn, depriving it of much-needed sunlight.


Cucumbers thrive with companion plants that help decrease pests, attract pollinators, and improve soil health. When chosen wisely, companion plants can dramatically increase harvest while adding variety to any garden space.

The most effective companion plants for cucumbers include legumes, which help fix nitrogen in the soil. You can plant legumes between rows of corn or your cucumber plants to provide ample nitrogen as they grow. Beans and peas also work well and can even be trained up the same trellis as your cucumbers for additional support if using the three sisters method to save space in your garden.

Root vegetables such as potatoes and carrots make excellent companion crops for cucumbers. Their roots provide vital nutrition to the cucumber plants while naturally suppressing any potential weed problems around their presence. Radishes make an ideal snack while cucumbers grow, while spinach can protect from diseases like bacterial wilt and mosaic virus.

Marigolds and nasturtiums make great companion plants for cucumbers as they deter nematodes and other harmful insects from attacking your crop. At the same time, their flowers also attract beneficial insects that provide additional pest control measures.


Nasturtiums are vibrantly-hued flowers that add beauty and pest control benefits to a vegetable garden, producing airborne chemicals to repel cucumber beetles, aphids, squash bugs, cabbage loopers, and other common vegetable pests. Ideal in full sun conditions with 1 to 3 feet height growth rates between May and September, blooming vibrant shades of red, orange, yellow, and pink cream. Attracting pollinators helps ensure your peas get pollinated for seed production purposes!

Brightly-colored flowers like marigolds make an excellent companion plant for vegetables that need nitrogen-rich soil, such as peas. Additionally, they help decrease aphid populations on brassica crops such as kale and cabbage by shading against sunlight. They also make an ideal match with radishes, which thrive best in relaxed, damp soil environments.

Mint makes an ideal companion plant for peas as it deters aphids while drawing bees and other beneficial insects, which is vital in making your vegetable crop successful. Mint also works well as an antinematode agent when planted alongside beans; its nitrogen-rich roots boost their growth and help prevent nematodes that attack legumes from attacking1. Dill can also protect adequately from aphids while drawing in bees and pollinators, helping your garden succeed!


Garden vegetables such as beans and potatoes make excellent companions for peas in the garden, including peas themselves. Bean plants offer shade and ground cover while fixing nitrogen into the soil while supporting vines – plus provide natural fences to block out weeds while helping retain moisture and nutrients in their environment.

Peas and beans thrive when planted alongside herbs such as yarrow, thyme, basil, and mint, repelling many pests that otherwise damage other crops while adding flavorful elements to prepared dishes. Arugula is an excellent companion plant for peas as it protects them from insect damage like aphids.

When planting peas in a vegetable garden, try not to plant them near other legumes, such as beans or peanuts, that may compete for soil nutrients. Furthermore, avoid planting your peas near other Allium family members, such as onions, garlic, and chives, as this could impede their development and stunt their growth.

If you want to combine arugula and peas, space them about 8-12 inches apart at the base. Harvest its leaves when harvesting your peas and allow the plant to regrow before reaping another harvest – perfect for enjoying fresh arugula in spring and fall, as it can be added to salads, sandwiches, and other delicious meals!


Marigolds are easy-care flowers that thrive in both vegetable gardens and flower beds. Preferring full sun with moderate temperatures, marigolds flourish when planted next to vegetables that require similar growing conditions. Best planted directly into your garden after all frost danger has passed and soil temperatures reach 70F+.

Bush beans benefit greatly from companion planting of marigolds as they repel Mexican bean beetles that threaten yields and crop damage, such as Mexican bean beetles. Marigolds also protect trellised or supported crops like pole beans and sweet peas from being decimated by Mexican bean beetles, and planting them around rows or beds of potatoes provides extra protection from potato bugs, which could otherwise quickly ruin these precious crops.

Corn, squash, cucumbers, and tomatoes all pair nicely with marigolds because these full-sun crops can become targets for pests; planting marigolds helps protect from these attacks by acting as an insect barrier and drawing in beneficial insects like lacewings and parasitic wasps to keep pest populations under control.

Lantana, another heat-tolerant flower that works well with peas, will continue blooming through the summer heat. Its vibrant colors and lavish blooms attract pollinators while helping keep the soil free of nematodes – assisting other vegetables to flourish.


Mint is a versatile herb that offers many advantages to gardeners. It is quickly grown, drought tolerant, has dense leaves to prevent erosion, attracts pollinators, and deters harmful insects such as aphids, thrips, and squash bugs from the garden – not to mention making an excellent companion plant with most vegetables and herbs!

Basil (Ocimum basilicum) makes an excellent companion crop with peas, helping repel pests that attack their legumes. Furthermore, basil provides shade to pea plants in direct sunlight, protecting them from wilting or drying out in direct sunlight. Basil can also improve soil nutrients while serving as an excellent nitrogen fertilizer source.

Carrots make ideal companions for peas, providing much-needed nitrogen into the soil and yielding rich harvests when planted together. Be careful to space out these two crops appropriately, as carrots could potentially overrun pea plants if produced too closely together.

Be wary when planting onions, leeks, scallions, and garlic near peas, as these plants can hinder their growth and lead to disease outbreaks in your garden. In particular, garlic contains an element called ajoene, which has been proven to suppress pea growth by up to 30% and even cause yield reduction by up to 30%! Cauliflower also doesn’t fare well when grown near peas as its proximity can also inhibit its development and cause disease outbreaks in your plot of land.