Companion planting

MichaelM

Jedi
FOTCM Member
I looked up the term "companion planting" after posting the topic on garlic earlier.
Here are some links with tables and lists for referencing what vegetables may be suitable companions plants for the veggies you're planning to grow:
_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_companion_plants
_http://www.ghorganics.com/page2.html
 

Amelopsis

Padawan Learner
Thank you for posting these...I'd not been able to find a good comprehensive list and lost the great book on the topic that I had once upon a time.
 

Jones

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
There are some excellent sources for companion planting within the study of Permaculture. One of the precepts behind Permacultural design is planning that each element (which can include both plants and structures) in the garden serves at least 2 different purposes. For example, you would plant beans and corn together. The beans use the corn stalks to grow up and the corn benefits from the nitrogen fixing properties of the beans. Permaculturists talk in terms of 'food forests' or 'food jungles', a far cry from modern agrigultural principles.

But Permaculture is not just about food, its also about community design. I visited a permacultural village once where fruit trees were planted on the walkway that the kids used to get to the school bus stop :)

www.PermaculturePrinciples.com
 

banjoechef

The Force is Strong With This One
I am on the second year of having a garden with a friend of mine. We have been researching companion planting after our first year was relatively successful. I have found two of the multiple books I read through to be of great help.

"Great garden companions : a companion planting system for a beautiful, chemical-free vegetable garden" by Sally Jean Cunningham. ISBN# 0875967817

"Rodale's successful organic gardening: Companion planting" text by Susan McClure ; plant by plant guide by Sally Roth ISBN# 0875966160 (pbk)

in reality I have found quite a bit of good information from the entire "Rodale's successful organic gardening" series of books.
I have planned to post our research about companion planting and just a whole variety of gardening information we've gathered but that will not likely be until after this gardening season when we have tested out some of the knowledge gathered. I can give more detailed information if anyone is interested.
 

banjoechef

The Force is Strong With This One
I forgot to say that you really have to test out the companion planting information. I have compiled a spreadsheet of data i've found and some of the sources of information can contradict each other. for instance i have read in different places that beets can benefit and be a problem growing with lettuce.
 

Amelopsis

Padawan Learner
Last year I had a tremendous problem with earwigs in my vegetable garden. Crawling nocturnal beggars that they are, they're not the easiest thing to get rid of without resorting to chemicals (and they were demolishing young plants at an alarming rate!)

I planted marigolds with the hope that they would repel them along with the flying insects; I didn't expect it would be all that likely to work, but if the experiment failed, well, at least I had some colour in the veg. garden.

The next morning I discovered that marigolds are a food of choice for earwigs - leaf, flower, everything but thickest stem, was gone.

It didn't work as I'd planned, but the marigolds managed to survive and they did serve to distract the hordes of earwigs from my food - all in all it was a success.

This year I've added marigolds to my seedling trays :)
 

banjoechef

The Force is Strong With This One
planting a crop that pests will like better than the things you want is called trap cropping. :)
earwigs generally like more moist areas so it can be useful if you have them bad to let things dry out a bit as long as it's plants that can take a slight drying, the earwigs like to find a moist cool place after feeding at night, you can try providing it with some damp newspapers to "hide" in and then take the newspapers up every morning and move them far away, some have said it's good to use some oatmeal in with the wet newspapers, I've never tried this just read about it.
 

Amelopsis

Padawan Learner
banjoechef said:
planting a crop that pests will like better than the things you want is called trap cropping. :)
In this case, it was a raging success! At least when I plant them again this year I'll be expecting the destruction!

earwigs generally like more moist areas so it can be useful if you have them bad to let things dry out a bit as long as it's plants that can take a slight drying, the earwigs like to find a moist cool place after feeding at night, you can try providing it with some damp newspapers to "hide" in and then take the newspapers up every morning and move them far away, some have said it's good to use some oatmeal in with the wet newspapers, I've never tried this just read about it.
This was exactly the difficulty - last summer was ridiculously wet so water wasn't a variable I could control with all the rain.
I actually used an old garden hose that was damaged to make traps (poor quality anyway, so I wasn't interested in repairing it). I cut it into about 12" lengths and laid them throughout the garden.
It worked quite well, the difficulty was that I didn't have time to empty the traps in the morning, and of course the heat of the day drove them back underground and evening collection expectedly yielded much less success.
My vegetable garden gets a lot of sun and I think I'll take the newspaper route this year if it's called for - the dampness of the paper would probably work much better with my schedule.

Thanks :)
 
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