Posts Tagged ‘companion plants to deter insects’

This year we decided to try something new and saved some space in our raised beds for borage and nasturtium. Both these plants can attract beneficial insects like bees but they also repel a whole host of bugs.


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This is pretty much what my last Saturday looked like. I spent hours reading about the needs of each plant, looking up companion plants and plotting our garden.

In addition to more planning, we’re also following the square-foot garden method. Not exactly, but we plan on spacing the vegetable plants a little closer than we have in the past.

Part of the problem is we have limited areas that get enough “full sun” for some of the vegetables to thrive, which makes full crop rotations more difficult. You can find a copy of our planting plan here, but I’ll explain some of the methodology below.

  • Bed 1 – Cucumbers will go up a trellis at the back with radishes planted in front to help deter the cucumber beetle. We’ll also plant 6-7 pepper plants here with space for spinach at the front.
  • Bed 2 – Peas are going in the ground soon, and when they’re done we’ll plant green beans. Using the “three sisters” plan from Native Americans, we’re also planting squash/zucchini here. We don’t grow corn, so ours is actually the “two sisters”
  • Bed 3 – Tomatoes with basil interspersed throughout. This is a smaller bed, so we’ll also plant some grape tomatoes in containers.
  • Bed 4 – Our other “nightshade” family bed. A couple more pepper plants with at least three eggplants. Also mixing in herbs like parsley, chives and thyme, which are supposed to be good companion plants.
  • Bed 5 – “Cole” crops, which don’t require as much sun like Brussels sprouts and broccoli. Also adding a row of sage and oregano to help deter cabbage butterflies, which devastated our plants last year.
  • Bed 6 – Spinach & lettuces. This bed gets morning sun but is otherwise shaded by the maple tree in our backyard. Also planting some herbs here that supposedly deter slugs (chives) and cabbage moths (dill).

We’re still relatively new at this, so any advice on our plan would be welcome!

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