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Once you have chosen the location of your vegetable garden, you need to decide which vegetables or herbs you would like to plant and where. Just like people, certain vegetables, herbs and flowers are beneficial to each other and when planted together get along very well, while others not so much. Certain plants additionally act as repellents for the bad bugs while others attract the beneficial bugs and add much needed nutrients to the soil through their leaves, roots and stems. This placing of beneficial plants together is known as companion planting.

Here are some hints and tips on companion planting to get you started.

  • Plant tomatoes, parsley and asparagus next to basil, because they are best friends. Not only does this enhance the flavour of the vegetables, especially tomatoes, basil also acts as a repellent of the tomato horn worm, aphids, flees and mosquitos.
  • Try to plant as many strongly scented herbs or garlic chives in your garden as possible because they act as pest repellents. Garlic especially helps to mask the smells that pests use to identify their host plants.
  • Avoid planting vegetables that look similar next to one another, like lettuce and spinach because you risk attracting the same pests and diseases that affect both plants.
  • Peas and Green Beans add nitrogen back to the soil and leafy greens like spinach love it! Onions, not so much. So be careful not to plant nitrogenous plants next to onions.
  • Plant nasturtiums in between your cabbage plants because instead of eating the cabbage leaves, bugs such as aphids and white flies are more attracted to the nasturtiums. In this case, the nasturtium is known as the sacrificial plant or crop.

A flourishing vegetable garden requires a lot more than just water and sunlight, it needs a carefully selected combination of veggies, flowers and herbs, to create the best conditions. Be it to ward off unwanted pests, attracting beneficial bugs and pollinators or planting vegetables that are beneficial to each other. Each Reel Gardening Garden in a Box. is packed with vegetables and herbs that are most likely to grow well together. Furthermore, companion flowers are an important part of every food garden and this is why Reel Gardening includes 2 carefully selected companion flowers in every box.

  • Sunflowers attract pollinators such as bees, butterflies and small birds to your garden.
  • Nasturtiums attract bees and butterflies to your garden while repelling white flies and acting as a trap crop for aphids.
  • Marigold has a pungent scent which acts as a repellent for bugs such as aphids, white flies, and Mexican bean beetles.

To get your garden started visit our online store:
https://reelgardening.co.za/products

 

References:

Jane’s Delicious Garden by Jane Griffiths

The Earthmill System for Organic Market Gardens by Phina Milner

Vegetable Gardening in South Africa by Jack Hadfield

Companion Planting Guide by Sue Sanderson in Thompson and Morgan
https://www.thompson-morgan.com/companion-planting-guide

Natural Pest Control Remedies- No Dig Vegetable Garden
http://www.no-dig-vegetablegarden.com/natural-pest-control-remedies.html

10 Plants for bees and other pollinators BY Birds and Blooms
http://www.birdsandblooms.com/gardening/top-10-lists-for-gardeners/10-plants-for-pollinators/?7

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