For the best possible growth and maximum harvest yields when growing potatoes, it is essential to pay attention to the plant neighbors. These 17 planting partners are particularly suitable for a potato mixed culture.

Mixed culture essential

The cultivation of a potato mixed culture is strongly recommended. On the one hand, this promotes the growth and health of the heavily consuming tuber and, on the other hand, it avoids soil problems that can have an impact on subsequent crops.

A potato mixed culture, for example, significantly reduces the risk of infestation with Colorado potato beetles (Leptinotarsa ​​decemlineata).

In summary, self-growers with a potato mixed culture expect the following advantages, which depend on the respective plant neighbor:

  • Neighboring weak and medium consumers prevent soil fatigue
  • Avoiding competition for nutrients
  • prevent possible pest infestations
  • Improvement of the soil structure
  • Stimulating microorganisms in the soil
  • long-term preservation of soil fertility
  • Risk reduction of disease spread
  • Promotion of annual multiple harvests possible

Good planting neighbors for potatoes from B to D

Baldrian (Valeriana officinalis)

  • Medium feeder, but shallow roots
  • very robust against pests and diseases
  • has essential oils that are effective against many species of beetles
  • Planting distance: 40 to 50 centimeters
  • Caution: attracts some cats; Symptoms of poisoning possible if eaten

Beans (Phaseolus vulgaris)

  • medium deep rooter
  • Sow outdoors: between mid-April and late June
  • Planting distance: at least 60 centimetres
  • annual
  • suitable types of beans: green, broad and red beans as well as runner beans

Blumenkohl (Brassica oleracea var. botrytis)

  • medium eater
  • Sow outdoors: until mid-July
  • Harvest: from mid-August
  • Planting distance: at least 70 centimetres
  • annual

Borretsch (Borago officinalis)

  • ideal for bordering beds
  • improves soil quality
  • weak feeder
  • Harvest: continuous from May
  • Special feature: smells subtle

Broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. Italica)

  • Although heavy consumers, they favor each other’s aroma
  • Planting distance: at least 50 centimeters
  • Regular, frequent checks for pests and diseases
  • Fertilizer to compensate for high nutrient consumption
Note: As a planting partner, broccoli should only be planted from one side of potatoes.

Dill (Anethum graveolens)

  • weak feeder
  • compact deep- rooting plant, therefore keep a planting distance of at least 50 centimetres
  • has a pest repellent effect
  • promotes germination of potato seeds
  • favors potato flavor

From E to K

Strawberries (Fragaria)

  • shallow roots
  • as a weak eater, low nutrient requirements
  • protect the soil
Note: Strawberries are only suitable to a limited extent for the potato mixed culture, as potatoes can trigger Verticillium wilt in them. Therefore, the planting distance between the two should be at least three meters.

Kapuzinerkresse (Tropaeolum majus)

  • flat tuberous roots
  • Planting distance: 60 centimetres
  • has a repellent effect against potato beetles and aphids
  • low nutrient requirements
  • forms more flowers next to heavily consuming potatoes

Knoblauch (Allium sativum)

  • medium eater
  • shallow roots
  • Planting distance: about 20 centimeters
  • keeps numerous pests away (including snails )
  • should not be missing in any mixed potato culture

Kohlrabi (Brassica oleracea var. gongylodes)

  • low space and nutrient requirements
  • medium eater
  • Planting distance of at least 30 centimeters
  • comply with taproot
  • has soil loosening properties

Kümmel (Carum carvi)

  • biennial
  • gives potatoes a tasty aroma
  • attracts flies and beetles for pollination, which feed on pests in the bed
  • contains essential oils that keep various pests at bay
  • ideal for transplanting individual potato plants

From M to W

More (Zea mays)

  • deep rooter
  • Planting distance as plant neighbor at least 100 centimeters
  • weak feeder
  • stabilizes soil structure
  • mutual growth promotion

Meerrettich (Armoracia rusticana)

  • medium eater
  • Root depth: up to 15 centimeters
  • Planting distance: about 80 centimeters
  • drives away potato beetles
  • prevents leaf curl (fungal disease) in combination with garlic

Mint (Mentha)

  • weak feeder
  • Shallow roots, but forms proliferating runners over time
  • drive away mice, rats and ants
  • Planting distance: between 40 and 50 centimeters
Tip: If you plant mint in the bed as a neighbor, you should put a root barrier in the ground when planting. The roots of the mint can form numerous runners, which otherwise spread uncontrollably and prevent other specimens from growing in the potato mixed culture.

Parsley (Petroselinum crispum)

  • Weak to medium eaters
  • nitrogen supplier for potatoes
  • are considered growth stimulants
  • Planting distance: about 20 to 30 centimeters
  • ideal for surrounding individual potato plants

Spinat (Spinacia oleracea)

  • weak feeder
  • ideal green manure due to taproots remaining in the soil after harvest
  • Sowing: between March and May until July at the latest (late-shooting species)
  • Planting distance to potatoes: 50 to 70 centimeters
Tip: Spinach shows an intolerance to conspecifics and all goosefoot plants. Several specimens next to each other prevent each other from thriving, which is why spinach should always be planted in small numbers or with large planting distances as part of the potato mixed culture.

Wirsing (Brassica oleracea convar. Capitata var. Sabauda)

  • conditionally good plant neighbour; must be fertilized more intensively to ensure sufficient soil nutrients
  • Heavy feeder, therefore annual change of location recommended
  • Planting distance to potatoes: between 60 and 80 centimeters
  • ideal plant neighbors also for spinach and beans
  • does not go well with garlic and onions

frequently asked Questions

Because Colorado potato beetles are deterred by the scent of the roots, horseradish should be planted in such a way that the roots form a network around the potatoes. In other words: horseradish is to be planted all around as a plant neighbor to the potatoes to ward off beetles.

Conditional. These remain good plant neighbors in the years to come. However, as heavy feeders, potatoes must be planted in a different place each year so that the soil can recover. A waiting period of at least three years, better four years, is recommended, otherwise prolonged soil fatigue will make the bed completely unsuitable for further self-cultivation.

That depends on which plant neighbors the potato mixed culture is dealing with. You should definitely keep a generous planting distance, especially with other heavy consumers, so that they do not (want to) deprive each other of the nutrients. If they are weak feeders, they can be planted so close to the potatoes that there is at least enough space for an undisturbed growth width between all plants.

Pure potato cultivation results in a monoculture, which is not recommended. Place at least one different type of plant between each row of potatoes, which is ideal for complementing potatoes. These include, above all, shallow-rooted weak feeders. A border of garlic and/or plants with essential oils or other scents keeps numerous pests away from the entire bed.

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