Introduction to Companion Planting

companion planting edge

Many people have heard of companion planting but not as many people use it as they should.

Learn more by signing up to our online Companion Planting Masterclass on Tuesday 26 April 6.30 – 7.30pm.

Here are some reasons why you might use it as a planning tool:

  • Pest management – a classic example of this would be planting fennel, dill, chives or onions with carrots, in order to repel carrot fly through scent.
  • Increased produce – carrots and onions in the same space is one example.  Growing broad beans with potatoes is another: the potatoes use the underground space and the beans above ground.
  • Attracting pollinators – plants from the Aster family (daisies) and Umbellifer flowers (e.g. fennel) can help attract the pollinators we want in the garden – from butterflies to bees and ladybirds (who will eat your aphids).
  • Diversifying produce – by incorporating edible flowers or herbs within your vegetable plot, whilst also attracting pollinators and sometimes repelling unwanted pests, you will be harvesting more from the space. Some edible flowers include Calendula (Marigold) or Borage.  Herbs which are helpful include Fennel, Dill, Chives and Garlic Chives and Mints.
  • Aesthetics – companion planting incorporates the use of flowers as well as leafy plants.  This gives lots of scope for brightening up any growing bed and adding more colour to your space.  The bees will like it too!

Rachel Hammond

Rachel Hammond from Newbury is a landscape architect, urban designer, gardener and master composter, specialising in edible landscapes, food production and biodiversity planting. She has worked in the sustainability sector for the last 20 years, always growing her own food. She now runs edge, a non-profit which educates on and designs urban food production systems and ecological farming practices.

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