Companion plants for peppers range from a vast array of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. Its high compatibility with many plants combined with introducing diverse plants in the garden promotes a healthier and more resistant garden as the end benefit.
In this article, we will break down the best and worst companion plants for peppers and answer some frequently asked questions. But first, let’s learn about companion planting.
What is companion planting?
Companion gardening is a permaculture practice that enriches and protects vulnerable crops by planting specific crops near another to deter pests, attract beneficial insects, and stimulate growth. It also improves soil nutrients, encourages good crop yield, better taste, support, and provides ground cover.
Great companion plants for peppers would help deter pests, attract pollinators, and create the ideal growing environment for pepper plants. Planning and making these choices can make the difference between a productive garden or a lot of wasted effort.
Overall, companion planting promotes a healthier garden and reduces the amount of labor as a bonus. The next sections of this article enumerates what vegetables, herbs, and flowers to plant together with peppers.
What is a good companion plant for Peppers?
Peppers are grown in the summer because they thrive in hot and humid conditions. They are relatively pest-free and can keep pests away from other plants making them good companions themselves. But to have a resilient garden, it is good to practice companion planting.
There are many plants that make suitable companion plants for peppers. Consider what makes sense to your region and what is appropriate for your garden.
Tomatoes deter nematodes and beetles which are common pests for peppers. Tomatoes and peppers are great companions and can be planted in the same garden bed with proper plant spacing. However, it is best practice to rotate planting tomato plants and bell peppers to different areas in the successive growing season to lower the risk of diseases. In addition, tall tomatoes grown near peppers help shade the soil offering protection from the sun.
Eggplants are a relative of peppers and a member of the nightshade family that enjoys the same conditions as peppers so companion planting makes sense to maximize yield. But similar to tomatoes, make sure to rotate the beds every year to minimize the risk of diseases.
Carrots and Squash
Planting carrots near peppers provide a living mulch for the peppers. A living mulch is any plant used to cover an area of soil and adds nutrients, enhances soil porosity, decreases weeds, and prevents soil erosion, among other attributes.
Similarly, squash is a pepper companion plant as the big squash leaves functions as a living much creating a humid growing environment for the peppers.
Onions and Garlic
Having onions as companion plants for peppers among others help keep off pests like cabbage worms, slugs, aphids, and many others in the vegetable garden. Onions also don’t take much space above the ground making them a great space saver, not to mention a staple aromatics in the kitchen.
Garlic is a great companion to most common garden plants. Similar to onions, garlic as a pepper companion plant help repel aphids and certain beetles from attacking pepper plants. Garlic has antiseptic properties and naturally deters insect and fungus.
In addition, planting them together is another way of maximizing space and getting better crop yields. Plant onions and garlic around and in between the pepper plants.
Spinach, Lettuce, and Swish Chard
Green leafy vegetables like spinach, lettuce, and swiss chard maximizes space and retard weeds while also keeping the soil cool and moist. The low growing greens of lettuce for example, don’t shade the peppers too much but also offers good ground cover. This creates a great environment that peppers like.
Root vegetables like radishes, beets, and parsnips can be used to fill in space in the garden to minimize weed growth around the peppers while also keeping the soil cool and moist. The perfect environment for growing peppers.
In addition, beets when planted with tomatoes (another pepper companion) can improve the tomatoes productivity.
Corn acts as a windbreaker and sun barrier to peppers because of its tall growth habit. In addition, corn keeps pests like aphids away from pepper plants. However, it is best not the plant corn beside beets to avoid some negative interaction.
Pole beans and peas fix nitrogen in the soil helping to feed the peppers and other garden plants. The growth habit of pole beans also crowds out weeds while breaking strong winds and offering a partial shade from the sun.
Buckwheat attract pollinators and other beneficial insects and can be used as green mulch for the garden once harvested. Asparagus can be interplanted to optimize the use of the space in the garden.
Basil when planted near peppers not only keeps pests like thrips, flies, aphids, spider mites, and mosquitoes away, they also help enhance the flavor of both sweet and hot peppers. Basil excretes volatile chemicals that mask those emitted by pepper plants making it difficult for the pests to attack the pepper plants. In addition, basil also provides dense ground cover creating humidity which peppers prefer.
Basil are easy to grow in herb and vegetable gardens with its fragrant leaves that add flavor to a lot of dishes. Basil as a companion also helps attract pollinators for other pants. Consider planting basil throughout the garden and enjoy this universal effect.
Dill also attracts beneficial insects and repels pests like spider mites that loves peppers. In addition, dill planted in between pepper plants helps to maximize garden space.
Parsley blossoms attract beneficial predatory wasps that feed on aphids. Parsley also provides shade and cover to keep moisture in.
Marjoram, rosemary, chives, and oregano are also companion plants for pepper. These herbs don’t compete for space, can cover a good amount of ground, and can complement dishes including peppers. Chives is also thought to improve the flavor of pepper.
Growing certain flowers near peppers is a great way to deter pests from the garden and keep them from your peppers.
Nasturtium often serves as trap crops in a vegetable garden. Trap crops are plants used to divert pests from the main crop being grown and are also called sacrificial crops. Nasturtiums as a trap crop attract pests such as aphids, beetles, squash bugs, whiteflies, and others.
Geraniums and other flowers
Geraniums repel cabbage worms, Japanese beetles, and other insects while also showing off their colorful blossoms. Petunias deter aphids, asparagus beetles, leafhoppers, and tomato worms.
Lastly, french marigolds repel beetles, nematodes, aphids, potato bugs, and squash bugs encouraging a more resilient and healthier garden overall.
Plants to avoid planting next to your pepper plants
Although peppers have many companions, some plants could compete for necessary resources or share the same predators.
Avoid planting near members of the Brassica family which includes:
- Brussels sprouts
The brassicas consume the same nutrients that peppers need and brassicas tend to overeat. To avoid having to feed your garden more than usual, do not plant peppers near cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and other members of the brassica family.
Do not plant near fennel because it gives off a chemical that inhibits the growth of neighboring plants. Similar to the brassicas, fennel also tends to consume more nutrients than usual.
Also, be aware of a common fungal disease common to peppers which can also affect apricot trees. These diseases can stunt the apricot tree’s growth and affect overall health.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can tomatoes and bell peppers be planted together?
Yes, you can plant them together.
Tomatoes deter soil nematodes and beetles making them great companion plants to peppers. However, it is best practice to rotate planting tomato plants and bell peppers to different areas in the successive growing season to lower the risk of diseases.
Also, be mindful to space the plants properly to avoid negative effects of overcrowding and disease control.
Can you plant marigolds with peppers?
Yes. French marigolds can be great companion plants for peppers. A certain type of substance is released from the roots that help repel nematodes and eelworms that attack peppers and other vegetable plants.