Basil is a hardy and versatile herb that many gardeners like to grow. It is instrumental in container gardens, which can be great for small spaces and balconies. Best of all, basil grows well alongside other herbs and vegetables. This makes basil companion plants an excellent choice for beginner gardeners.
Choosing the best basil companion plants for the vegetable garden is mostly about personal preference. It’s best to grow the plants you plan to use in your recipes together. That way, you can harvest them at the same time.
Basil goes well with many other types of herbs as well as vegetables. In addition to growing together in a pot, they also make good companions in a traditional garden bed.
You may already know that the best time to plant basil is in early summer. But don’t let the season end before you find out what plants grow well with it. Here’s a list of eggplants, onions, beans, tomatoes, and more that’ll make a great addition to your garden next year.
Eggplant is a perennial plant often grown as a tender or half-hardy annual in temperate climates. It’s a nightshade family member, related to the tomato, potato, and tobacco. The plant typically grows to 2–3 feet tall, with large coarsely lobed leaves that are 10–20 cm long and 5–10 cm broad. Semiwild types can grow much more extensive, to 275 cm (9 ft), with large leaves over 30 cm long and 15 cm wide. The stem is often spiny.
The flowers are white to purple; the fruit is egg-shaped, glossy purple or yellowish-white, often with black seeds clustered at the bottom of a fleshy interior. Some common cultivars have egg-shaped fruit, glossy purple with white flesh, and a spongy interior with tiny seeds that make it especially desirable for stuffing; others are lemon-shaped and yellow or greenish-white.
Onions are definitely among the most surprising of basil’s companion plants. They’re a good choice when planning an herb garden or when you want to grow basil alongside your other vegetables.
Onions are one of the easiest vegetables to grow in your garden, and they’re a good choice for increasing near basils. You can grow onions in containers or on the ground; either way, you’ll get flavorful bulbs perfect for flavoring many dishes.
In addition to their flavor value, onions also help repel pests that might attack basil plants. Onions produce an odor that bugs don’t like. They won’t keep all insects away from your basil, but they’ll help reduce them.
You may not think of beans as a companion to basil, but they’ve been paired together since the 4th century BC. Beans are an excellent source of protein and fiber, so they’re a great addition to any garden. They grow quickly with little care and can be harvested in the late summer. When planting beans near basil (or anything else), make sure that you place them at the back of your garden or up a trellis.
Beans are legumes; they belong to a family of plants whose roots contain nodules where bacteria live. This bacteria fixes nitrogen from the air into the soil, making it available to other plants. Planting basil with beans can result in higher yields of both crops.
The classic pairing of tomatoes and basil in a Caprese salad isn’t just delicious; it also works well in the garden. The two plants benefit each other when grown together, making them great companion plants for each other.
The tomato plant’s presence helps repel the flies and hornworms that love to feast on the leaves of your basil plant. On top of that, the tomato plant’s roots produce certain chemicals that keep fungus from forming on the leaves of your basil plant. It also has chemicals that help protect your basil from wilt diseases.
Another benefit is that tomatoes’ need for calcium makes them a good neighbor for your basil plant as neither one will be competing for this nutrient.
Asparagus is a perennial plant that can grow up to 1.5m tall. It is a member of the lily family and as such, has long thin stems. Asparagus is generally easy to grow in gardening zones 3-9 but prefers full sun and well-drained soil. You’ll want to wait two years before harvesting your first stalks after planting seeds or crowns, so be patient.
Basil and asparagus are good companions for many reasons. Asparagus beetles are not fans of basil plants; they’ll leave the area if you plant basil near your asparagus patch. Basil also attracts bees and other pollinators that help cross-pollination in asparagus plants—important for self-pollinating species like Mary Washington or Purple Passion!
Basil grows well with many plants, including these five examples.
Basil enhances the growth of many plants. There are several reasons why this is, including that it repels some harmful insects and has antibacterial properties. In turn, these companion plants will protect your basil crop from disease and pests.
The following five companion plants for basil include:
If you are a gardener, be it at home or in a business, I suggest that you give some thought to companion planting. At the very least, try a few plants together and see what happens. It may be a pleasant surprise for you and your garden.
Using companion plants is a great way to have a sustainable garden without spending money on chemical pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers. Plants process the air and produce oxygen so we can breathe and eliminate carbon dioxide, so our environment does not become toxic. Companion planting allows you to spend less time weeding and pest control and more time harvesting your healthy food.
I hope this article will provide you with new information about fellow companion plants that you may not have tried yet.