Yesterday I posted our plans for this year’s garden. This was last year’s garden if you’re interested in seeing how things have changed.
Today we’re going to wrap up the “How to Layout….” series with Companion Planting. The premise of companion planting is to confuse pests, create symbiotic relationships, and mimic nature. Some plants also don’t do well next to each other. A good example is when I planted garlic and beans together once. Onion family plants just don’t like beans. We ended up losing the entire garlic crop that year and the beans didn’t do very well until after we pulled out the garlic.
The drawing to the left is of our garden layout from last year. You’ll notice that not all of the same plant are near each other. Tomatoes, beans, corn, squash, watermelons, lettuce, peas and garlic are split into multiple areas. The large circles represent our fruit trees. For scale, the small dashes represent 1′ increments and the longer dashes are 5′ increments. So the longest beds are 75′ long x 4′ wide.
So how did I figure out how to lay everything out? I have a chart that shows what works with what. Going back to yesterday”s installment we discussed the families of the most common vegetables grown in peoples’ gardens. But to recap:
Beets – Beet, Spinach, Swiss Chard
Brassicas – Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Broccoli Raabe, Arugula, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Cress, Horse-radish, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard, Pak Choi, Radish, Rutabaga, Turnip
Carrots – Carrot, Celeriac, Celery, Cilantro, Dill, Fennel, Parsnip
Cucurbits – Cucumber, Melon, Watermelon, Squash, Pumpkin, Gourd
Grasses – Wheat, Corn, Barley, other grains
Legumes – Beans, Peas, Peanuts
Mallow – Okra
Morning Glory – Sweet Potato
Onion – Asparagus, Chives, Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Scallions, Shallots, Ramps
Solanaceae – Tomatoes, Peppers, Potatoes, Eggplants, Tomatillo
Sunflower – Artichoke, Jerusalem Artichoke, Lettuce, Sunflower
If a vegetable you want to grow isn’t included in my chart then refer to other family members to establish it’s ally or adversary. Click on the chart below to enlarge.