Definition - What does Companion Planting mean?
Companion planting is the cultivation of plants that grow harmoniously together. It is an excellent way to conserve space and water, and fully utilize a garden's available space.
Companion planting occurs all of the time in nature. A natural prairie ecosystem is an example of a variety of plants all growing harmoniously. In a garden setting companion planting takes a little more thought and planning.
MaximumYield explains Companion Planting
Companion planting is a popular common gardening practice because it more efficiently uses space. It is not unusual, for example, to see vine crops such as melons growing alongside rows of corn.
Beans are an excellent choice for companion planting and often they are grown along with cabbage, beets, or carrots. Legumes such as beans produce nitrogen that can be absorbed by other plants, do not take up a lot of space, and are not aggressive growers.
Some garden plants acting as natural pesticides are grown alongside other crops as a preventive measure. Potatoes and marigolds are known to repel Mexican bean beetles, and catnip repels flea beetles.
Garlic is an excellent repellent of many insects, grows in a variety of conditions, and is often used in companion planting.
Basil is also widely used as a companion plant because it improves the flavor of vegetables and repels mosquitoes. Borage is often a companion plant used alongside squash, strawberries, or tomatoes, because it is known to repel the tomato worm and improves the flavor of nearby companion vegetables.