When you’re growing organically, especially if you’re new to growing your own, it can sometimes seem like you are fighting a losing battle. Companion planting can help to protect your crops from pests in one of three ways:
1. To deter pests when planted amongst vegetables, usually with its scent.
2. To attract pests away from vegetables.
3. To attract natural predators, like ladybirds and lacewings, which will in turn eat pests like aphids.
Companion Plant Ideas:
Chives and Garlic Chives – Plant amongst carrots to deter carrot fly.
Nasturtiums – Plant a clump near brassicas. They’ll act as a sacrificial crop protecting brassicas from cabbage white caterpillars.
Marigolds and Tagetes – Use anywhere that aphids and and white fly are a problem, (for example, in amongst your tomato plants) as they will attract ladybirds and lacewing which will help to keep white fly and aphids at bay.
Mint – Can deter flea beetles (lots of leafy veg are affected by these bugs which make lots of tiny holes in the leaves).
Chamomile, Lavender, Borage & Hyssop – attract bees and other pollinators. Plant them in and around your beds.