Companion planting is a technique that has been done by gardeners for thousands of years. This process involves strategically planting different species of plants near each other to gain advantages for each. Companion planting for Cauliflower can offer a lot of added benefits to your crops, from pest control to better soil quality.
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What plants are good for companion planting for Cauliflower?
The best plants for companion planting for cauliflower are celery, dill, marigolds, onions, garlic, sage, thyme, chamomile, nasturtiums, and chives. These plants will allow for you to positively impact your garden, while providing a balanced ecosystem. Due to many of these plants offering natural pest repellent abilities, you often will not need to use any chemical pest control products on your garden. The advantages to companion plants are abundant and very easy to accomplish.
Celery is an excellent option for companion planting for cauliflower, as it offers pest control, soil benefits, and attracts pollinators. This plant is commonly recommended as a companion to the plants in the brassicas family, which are cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli. The celery plant offers a lot of value due to the fact that it deters many pests that like to damage cauliflower, such as aphids, cabbage moths, and cabbage worms. The cabbage moth and their larvae are known to cause damage to cauliflower crops by feasting on them. This plant is able to deter these pests because it has a smell that these insects don’t like, which allows your cauliflower to thrive better. Due to the tall nature of this plant, it will also provide a good amount of protection from the elements for the plants that grow around it by blocking wind and providing some shade.
Celery can be a bit more difficult to grow for some people, as this plant does require some care. Celery likes a lot of nutrients while growing, so it’s essential to fertilize its soil. This type of plant is a cool weather crop as well, so it does best when the temperatures aren’t too high. In addition, proper watering is a crucial need for celery because it requires plenty of moisture in it’s well draining soil. This plant is not drought tolerant, so it will not deal with a lack of water for very long.
Dill is a great choice for companion planting for cauliflower due to the fact that it’s also a common herb used in many recipes. This herb offers many benefits for cauliflower, such as the ability to repel away many pests due its strong fragrance. Some of the insects that it will repel from attacking your cauliflower are cabbage moths, cabbage worms, and cabbage loopers. In tandem, it tends to attract beneficial insects that will feed on aphids and other harmful pests that like to damage the growing cauliflower plants.
Dill is generally considered a pretty easy herb to grow as it thrives in multiple types of soils and conditions. This plant is a quick grower that doesn’t need too much water. Dill likes full sun but can tolerate as little as 6 hours of sunlight a day. You will also find that this plant tends to drop seeds and reseed itself as well, making it very easy to grow each year!
Marigolds are a very popular type of flower that people love to plant outside of their homes due to their beautiful, long lasting blooms. They also have a very strong scent to them that many insects do not enjoy. Subsequently, planting them around your cauliflower plants can serve as a protective border against pests. They also tend to attract beneficial insects that will feed on the more harmful ones. The benefits of marigolds in the garden are numerous.
Marigolds are very easy to grow plants, which makes them an excellent candidate for both new and experienced gardeners. They tolerate a wide range of environmental conditions and are very hardy plants. Marigolds do well in a range of sunlight and temperatures, making them suitable for all types of gardens. They are low maintenance plants that require regular watering but can tolerant some drought.
Garlic makes for an amazing option for companion planting for cauliflower. As you probably have noticed, garlic has an extremely strong smell to it. These strong scents are disliked by many insects that can do a lot of crop damage, such as aphids, cabbage worms, and root maggots. Garlic also has a lot of antimicrobial effects, which may offer some disease protection for your garden. Growing these near your cauliflower will give it all of these great benefits.
Garlic is moderately easy to grow since it is a low maintenance plant that does not require much besides regular watering. Garlic plants are very resilient and will adapt to a variety of environments. This plant will thrive as long as it has well draining soil, plenty of sunlight and adequate water.
Onions are another plant that belong to the Allium family like Garlic. Similarly to garlic, onion emits a powerful scent that many insects hate. These plants will repel aphids, cabbage loopers, caterpillars, and flea beetles. Repelling these insects will greatly assist your cauliflower crop’s health and success rate.
Onions are easy to grow and do not require too much maintenance. They do not take too much from the soil, allowing for your cauliflower to have plenty of nutrients. They do need to be watered regularly, since their roots are shallow. However, this means that they will not compete with cauliflower for moisture. These plants want plenty of sun and well draining soil. If they have that, they should be very easy to grow.
Sage has an excellent ability to repel harmful pests due to the strong scent that it gives off. As a result, your chances of a pest infestation harming your cauliflower will decrease. Sage plants can benefit the soil when they decompose at the end of the season. This releases the calcium and other nutrients they have held in their leaves into the surrounding soil. This will help future growth in the area or or enrich your compost. On top of everything, this plant will produce flowers that attract helpful insects into your garden that will feed upon the aphids and other pests that can hurt your cauliflower crops.
It’s important to note that sage can be a rather large plant, so you need to follow the spacing guidelines on the seed packet. Otherwise, this plant is a generally easy to grow perennial, that can live for many years. This herb is capable of thriving in many growing conditions and is deemed pretty low maintenance. Sage prefers well draining soil and has a moderate drought tolerance. This plant can even be propagated through stem cuttings! Enjoy Sage as a companion plant in your garden and even use it as an herb in your kitchen!
Thyme can be a great choice to add to your garden by offering many useful benefits. One of which is it’s excellent insect repellent qualities. Thyme has a strong scent due to thymol in it’s oils and will repel many pests that will do damage to your cauliflower. This herb can deter harmful threats such as cabbage worms, aphids, cabbage loopers, flea beetles and whiteflies. This plant also has similar growing conditions to cauliflower. The fact they both prefer well draining soil and full sun makes them a perfect pair. On top of that, thyme doesn’t use too much water from the soil. They make a harmonious pair both in the garden and in the kitchen!
Thyme is a hardy and easy to grow perennial herb that can thrive in many growing conditions. It is tolerant of drought and resistant to many kinds of pests. This is a low maintenance plant that should not require too much care once it’s established. You can very easily propagate this plant with stem cuttings to get additional plants! Thyme has many uses in the kitchen, as well as in herbal medicine!
Chamomile is a common type of tea, but did you know that it is an excellent choice when companion planting for cauliflower? This plant produces many beautiful flowers that attract pollinators to the area, which helps with plant pollination. Chamomile plants also possess a natural fungicide quality, which helps prevent any diseases within the soil that can affect the roots of your cauliflower plants. Interestingly, chamomile has been said to improve the taste of crops planted near it.
Chamomile is an easy to grow herb for the garden and it can thrive in many types of environments. It is a low maintenance plant that only really requires watering. It also loves to self seed, which can be a negative if you don’t want this plant to spread. To avoid any spreading of chamomile, try to deadhead any flowers as they die before they drop seeds to the ground.
Nasturtiums are a beautiful flowering plant that is well known for it’s ability to protect neighboring plants. This plant makes bright, beautiful flowers that look like small trumpets. Nasturtiums are a good option for companion planting for cauliflower because this plant is often used as a trap crop. A trap crop will attract harmful pests such as aphids and cabbage moths to it. As a result, keeping these dangers away from your precious cauliflower crop. They also tend to attract helpful insects, such as lady bugs and wasps, which love to feed on aphids and lay parasitical eggs on caterpillars. This plant is an excellent choice if you have an aphid problem in your garden.
Nasturtiums are easy to grow as long as they have well draining soil and plenty of sunlight. This isn’t a type of plant that you need to worry about fertilizing, as it does fine in poor soil. Nasturtiums are easy to grow and offer many great benefits!
Chives behave in a similar way as onion and garlic, since they are all in the same family of Allium plants. This herb offers a milder taste and smell than its counterparts do, which may appeal to your culinary needs better. You may use tasty herb in many recipes since it is very popular! This plant is great for pest control, as it has an onion scent to it that aphids and cabbage worms do not enjoy. You can expect your plant to produce purple flowers that will attract pollinators, which can potentially help your cauliflower plants production. This plant takes up a small amount of space and will not compete with your other plants, which allows you to use your space very efficiently.
The chive plant is extremely easy to grow, even thriving in small containers as well. It is a hardy perennial herb that is great at withstanding even mild frosts. You can also expect this plant to be low maintenance and not require much care, as they are very self sufficient plants. Chives can also be planted alongside most other plants for many happy pairings!
To sum it up, exploring the combinations of companion plants for cauliflower can provide you with many benefits in your garden. You will be able to diversify your ecosystem, while providing natural pest control for your plants. Many of these plants are excellent additions to your recipes in your kitchen as well.
Companion Planting. West Virginia University Extension