Companion Plants and the Tomato Garden
Companion Plants help other plants in a number of ways. Choosing the right companions can help enhance the condition of the soil, provide cover for root systems, attract beneficial insects, repel harmful insects, assist in growth and improving vegetable flavor. Planting companions has been used in gardening for hundreds of years and are an integral part of knowing how to grow tomatoes.
Vegetable plants aren't the only type of companion plants, many herb plants and flowers are very good companion plants. Multible plants that are companions of a particular vegetable, may not be compatible with each other. It can get pretty confusing. There are many charts and lists attempting to demonstrate the companion plant possibilities, but cross referencing those possibilities can be daunting. The goal here is to simplfy the use of companion plants for growing healthy, tasty fresh tomatoes.
BASIL, will help the tomato's growth and flavor while repelling tomato worm, flies and mosquitoes.
BORAGE, attracts predatory insects and bees while repelling other pests such as tomato worms.
CHIVES, helps the growth and flavor of tomatoes and carrots and repels aphids, carrot flies and cabbage worms.
GARLIC, repels aphids, beetles and rabbits. It's bulbs store sulphur, a natural fungicide. great for roses too.
LOVAGE, improves flavor and health of it's companion plants. Attracts beneficial wasps.
MARIGOLDS & POT MARIGOLDS, attract hover flies, reduces nematodes in the soil, repels tomato hornworms and rabbits.
MARJORAM, improves flavor and provides ground cover
MINT, repels cabbage moth, aphids, flea beetles, white flies and provides ground cover.
OREGANO, repels aphids and white flies and provides ground cover.
PARSLEY, repels asparagus beetle and provides ground cover.
ALLIUMS, consist of onions, garlic, leeks, chives, shallots etc. Generally, they repel the same pests slugs, aphids, carrot fly, cabbage worms.
CELERY, Good Tomato companion.
PEPPERS, both sweet and hot help tomatoes. Tomatoes help peppers by providing shade for the fruit. Peppers are benefited by the same herbs as tomatoes.
BROCCOLI, CABBAGE, CORN and POTATOES have too many pests in common with the TOMATO.
The combination of tomatoes and their companions were common during the Great Depression and were often called Soup Gardens. This form of companion gardening was planted during World War II, known as Victory Gardens. The plants to avoid with tomatoes were also grouped as another form of Victory garden. The victory Garden page demonstrates the tomato Victory Garden or Soup Garden. The recipes using the companions of the tomato Victory Garden are not relegated to soup alone. A great number of recipes can be created using the plants of the Tomato Victory garden. The Tomato Recipe pages on this site present some of the possiblities.