Growing your own vegetables is more rewarding than ever. It doesn’t matter whether you only grow vegetables in a tub, in a raised bed, whether you have a vegetable bed or even a small vegetable garden, it’s worth it. However, you should not just sow or plant straight away. There are all sorts of things to consider. Not all types of vegetables go well together. Knowing who can and cannot with whom saves work and allows the plants to thrive better or worse. In addition, working together influences the harvest. In the following text you can read about what needs to be considered with a mixed culture.

What is a mixed culture?

  • Simultaneous cultivation of several crops in one bed, quite close together
  • Possibilities – tier culture, undersowing, intermediate planting, border planting or simply row planting
  • The different plants should complement each other above and below ground
  • Plant neighborhoods with herbs often make a lot of sense
  • Better soil utilization (space and nutrients)
  • Pest and disease defense
  • shading of the ground
  • Many advantages
  • Wrong composition often leads to stunted growth

Why is mixed culture so useful?

Not only with vegetables does it not make sense to distribute the same plants on the same beds for years. The cultivated plants literally leach out the soil, making it tired. The root excretions affect the growth of the next generation. The risk of infection and pest infestation increases if you don’t mix up the vegetables and change the layout of the bed. The change in crop rotation and the mixed cultures help to bring in a rich harvest and to harvest healthy plants and corresponding vegetables.

Properly selected neighbors when planting keep pests away and improve quality and quantity. They ensure that the bed is shaded, which minimizes soil evaporation and also suppresses weeds. It is particularly favorable that harmful fungi cannot germinate because spore germination is suppressed by the symbioses of the plants.

Tip: A mixed culture should be well planned. Good neighbors are beneficial, but bad neighbors can also be harmful. As a rule of thumb, remember that vegetables that ripen above ground pair well with vegetables that fruit below ground. This has the additional advantage that the plants can be placed closer together because the fruits do not crowd each other and compete for the available space. The yield is increased on the same area.

Which vegetables go together?

Various factors are important when composing a bed. These include the space requirements, the nutrient requirements, the root excretions and the scent of the neighboring plants. Certain aromatic plants with their intense scents help to keep other plants healthy and can ward off pests. Potatoes and caraway are an example of such a symbiosis .

Garlic between strawberries , in turn, ensures that strawberry mites are driven away. This also works with carrots and parsley , which keeps the annoying carrot fly away. Garlic has other benefits as well. It can kill some fungi and bacteria. For example, chamomile, marigolds or marigolds are effective against nematodes. Basil planted next to tomatoes ensures that the quite sensitive plants are less affected by powdery mildew.

It is important to combine plants well in a mixed culture, eg deep and shallow roots, heavy and weak feeders, fruit vegetables that grow above and below ground.

  • Aubergine – Kidney Bean
  • Cauliflower – endive, lettuce, celery
  • Beans – savory
  • French Beans – dill, savory, endive, radishes, lettuce
  • Endives – beans, cabbage, carrots, leeks
  • Peas – fennel, carrots, radish, lettuce, celery
  • Strawberries – Garlic, Leek, Radish
  • Lamb’s lettuce – cabbage
  • Cucumbers – French beans, dill, fennel, garlic, onions
  • Potatoes – cabbage, cumin, nasturtium
  • Cabbage Varieties – Celery and Tomatoes (Provide protection from some pests)
  • Kohlrabi – Peas, leeks, beets, celery, spinach, onions
  • Pumpkin – Corn
  • Corn – beans, potatoes, squash, melons, zucchini
  • Chard – beans, carrots, radishes, salads
  • Horseradish – Potatoes
  • Carrots – peas, garlic, onions as well as leeks, dill for flavor
  • Peppers – cabbages, carrots, tomatoes
  • Leek – endive, cabbage, kohlrabi, carrots, celery
  • Rhubarb – French beans, cabbage, spinach
  • Radish – peas, lamb’s lettuce, chard, spinach
  • Brussels sprouts – leek, celery
  • Beets – beans, cabbage, kohlrabi, onions
  • Salads – dill, chervil, fennel, cabbage (against flea beetles) radishes
  • Black salsify – beans, kohlrabi, leek, lettuce
  • Celery – cauliflower, broccoli, leeks, tomatoes
  • Asparagus – dill, kohlrabi, lettuce
  • Spinach – Chinese cabbage, kale, kohlrabi, radishes
  • Savoy cabbage – leek, beetroot, spinach, tomatoes
  • Tomatoes – nasturtium, cress (against lice), parsley with onion (against late blight), onions
  • Zucchini – corn, beetroot, tomato
  • Onions – dill, strawberries, cucumber, garlic, spinach

Vegetables in community

  • Planting basil between tomatoes, cucumbers and cabbage prevents powdery mildew and protects against whitefly.
  • Savory between beans – keeps the black bean aphid at bay and the scents promote growth and aroma of the beans
  • Nettle – against aphids and promotes overall plant health
  • Dill between carrots, beetroot and cabbage – promotes the germination of carrots. The scents keep pests away.
  • Southernwood between cabbages – keeps the cabbage white butterfly away
  • Garlic between strawberries – works against bacteria and fungi
  • Radish between leeks – helps against the leek moth
  • Marigolds on potatoes and cabbage – help against nematodes, wireworms and increase crop yield. They also promote soil health.
  • Tagetes between tomatoes, cabbage, potatoes and strawberries – against nematodes, viruses and whiteflies
  • Onions for strawberries and carrots – against fungal diseases and spider mites
  • Rosemary on cabbage and carrots – against cabbage white and carrot fly

What doesn’t go together?

There are also vegetables that don’t go well together. The plants take up space from each other, nutrients or the sun. In order to be able to bring in a healthy and high harvest, you should therefore know which types of vegetables do not go well together.

Note: Cruciferous plants are generally not compatible with each other, as are legumes and umbellifers.
  • Cruciferous vegetables: – Cauliflower, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, kale, head cabbage, kohlrabi, watercress, turnips, radishes, radish, Brussels sprouts, arugula, savoy cabbage
  • Legumes – beans, peas, lentils, broad beans, vetches
  • Umbelliferae – dill, fennel, chervil, cumin, lovage, carrots, parsnips, parsley, celery

Unfavorable combinations are:

  • Beans and peas, fennel, garlic, carrots, tomatoes, onions
  • Peas and beans, potatoes, garlic, leeks, tomatoes, onions
  • strawberries and cabbages
  • Cucumbers and cabbage, radish, lettuce, celery, as well as tomatoes
  • Potatoes and peas, cucumber, garlic, celery, tomato, onion
  • Garlic and beans, peas, new potatoes, leeks, onions
  • Cabbage and strawberries, cucumber, potato, garlic, beetroot, onion
  • Lettuce and parsley, celery
  • carrots and beetroot
  • Parsley and leeks, lettuce, celery, onions
  • Leek and beans, peas, garlic, chard, onions
  • radish and cucumber
  • Beetroot and potatoes, corn, chard, leek, spinach
  • Red cabbage and tomatoes
  • Lettuce and parsley, radish, celery
  • celery as well as cucumbers, potatoes, lettuce, parsley, sweetcorn
  • Spinach and cauliflower, arugula
  • Tomatoes and beans, peas, fennel, red cabbage, potatoes, sweetcorn

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