Are you looking to grow arugula in your garden? If so, you may want to consider planting companion plants alongside it. Companion planting involves growing plants together that benefit each other in some way.
When it comes to arugula companion plants, there are several that can help improve its growth and flavor.
- Companion planting involves growing plants together that benefit each other.
- Arugula benefits from companion plants such as alliums (onions and garlic), basil, mint, and plants in the brassica family (broccoli, cauliflower).
- Companion planting creates a mutually beneficial relationship between plants, improving health and productivity.
- Benefits of companion planting include pest control, improved nutrient uptake, space-saving, and attracting beneficial insects.
- Companion plants for arugula include beets, lettuce, spinach, basil, cilantro, nasturtiums, and other brassicas.
- Consider spacing requirements when planning companion planting to allow for proper growth and benefits.
- Arugula prefers well-draining soil, consistent moisture, and similar growing conditions to its companion plants.
What Is Companion Planting?
Companion planting is the practice of growing different plants in close proximity to one another. The goal is to create a mutually beneficial relationship between the plants, where one plant helps the other to grow better.
Companion planting has been used for centuries, and it’s a great way to improve the health and productivity of your garden. By planting certain plants together, you can help to repel pests, attract beneficial insects, and even improve soil health.
Benefits of Companion Planting
When it comes to arugula, companion planting can provide a range of benefits. By growing certain plants alongside your arugula, you can create a more diverse and balanced ecosystem in your garden. Here are some of the benefits of companion planting:
- Pest control: Certain plants release chemicals that repel pests, while others attract beneficial insects that prey on pests. Companion planting can help control pest populations by creating a balanced ecosystem in the garden. For example, planting marigolds or nasturtiums alongside your arugula can help repel aphids and whiteflies, while planting dill or fennel can attract ladybugs and lacewings, which prey on aphids.
- Improved nutrient uptake: Some plants have deep roots that can help break up compacted soil and bring up nutrients from deeper layers. Others have shallow roots that can help prevent erosion and retain moisture. By planting arugula alongside plants like radishes or carrots, which have deep roots, you can improve the overall health of your soil and help your arugula absorb more nutrients.
- Saves space: Companion planting allows you to use your garden space more efficiently, letting you harvest more varieties in a given area. For example, planting arugula alongside lettuce or spinach can help you maximize your yield and create a more diverse salad mix.
- Attracting beneficial insects: Some plants attract beneficial insects that can help pollinate your garden and prey on harmful pests. For example, planting borage or calendula alongside your arugula can help attract bees and butterflies, which are important pollinators, while planting yarrow or chamomile can attract hoverflies and parasitic wasps, which prey on aphids and other pests.
- Sacrificial plants: Some plants can be used as sacrificial plants, which attract pests away from your arugula. For example, planting a few sacrificial plants like radishes or nasturtiums alongside your arugula can help distract pests like flea beetles, which prefer these plants over arugula.
Companion Plants for Arugula
Arugula is a versatile and easy-to-grow leafy green that can benefit from companion planting. By planting certain plants near arugula, you can improve its growth, flavor, and overall health. Here are some of the best companion plants for arugula, as well as plants to avoid planting near it.
Best Companion Plants for Arugula
- Beets: Beets and arugula are both cool-season crops that can grow well together. Beets help to improve the soil quality by adding nitrogen, which is essential for arugula’s growth.
- Nasturtium: Nasturtium is a great companion plant for arugula because it attracts beneficial insects that can help to control pests like flea beetles and aphids. It also adds a pop of color to your garden.
- Brassicas: Arugula is a member of the brassica family, so planting other brassicas like cabbage and radish can help to improve its growth and flavor.
Plants That Grow Well with Arugula
- Spinach: Spinach is another cool-season crop that can grow well with arugula. It can also help to improve the soil quality by adding nitrogen.
- Allium: Alliums like onions, garlic, and leeks can help to repel pests like aphids and flea beetles. They also add flavor to your garden.
Plants That Provide Shade for Arugula
- Basil: Basil is a great companion plant for arugula because it can provide shade during hot summer months. It also repels pests like mosquitoes and flies.
- Celery: Celery can also provide shade for arugula. It’s a cool-season crop that can grow well with arugula.
Plants That Protect Arugula from Pests
- Cucumber: Cucumber is a great companion plant for arugula because it can help to repel pests like beetles and aphids. It also adds moisture to the soil.
- Nasturtium: As mentioned earlier, nasturtium can attract beneficial insects that can help to control pests.
Plants to Avoid Planting Near Arugula
- Nightshades: Nightshade plants like tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants can attract pests like flea beetles and can also compete with arugula for nutrients.
- Carrots: While carrots and arugula can be planted together, they can also compete for nutrients. It’s best to plant them in separate areas of your garden.
Pro Tip: When planting arugula, consider intercropping it with other plants to maximize space and improve soil quality. By choosing the right companion plants for arugula, you can create a thriving and healthy garden.
Growing Arugula and Companion Plants
If you want to plant arugula with companion plants, it’s important to consider the growing conditions for both. Arugula is a cool-season crop that thrives in temperatures between 45 and 65°F (7 and 18°C). It can be grown in both spring and fall, but it’s important to avoid planting it during the hottest months of the year.
Growing Conditions for Arugula and Companion Plants
Arugula prefers well-draining soil that’s rich in organic matter. It needs consistent moisture, but it’s important to avoid overwatering, as this can lead to root rot. When choosing companion plants, look for plants that have similar growing conditions to arugula. Some good options include lettuce, spinach, and radishes.
Sowing and Growing Arugula with Companion Plants
When sowing arugula seeds, it’s important to plant them about ¼ inch (6mm) deep and 1 inch (2.5cm) apart. Arugula grows quickly and can be harvested in as little as four weeks. When growing arugula with companion plants, make sure to give each plant enough space to grow. Arugula can be planted in rows, and companion plants can be planted in between the rows.
Harvesting Arugula and Companion Plants
When harvesting arugula, it’s important to pick the leaves when they’re young and tender. This will help to promote the growth of your arugula plants. Companion plants can also be harvested at the same time. Some good options include lettuce, spinach, and radishes.
There are some plants you should avoid planting near arugula. Nightshades, such as tomatoes and peppers, can attract pests that can damage your arugula. Carrots and strawberries can also be problematic, as they can compete with arugula for nutrients and water. On the other hand, there are some plants that work well with arugula. Herbs like rosemary and thyme can help to disguise the arugula from damaging pests.
FAQ: Arugula Companion Plants
What are arugula companion plants?
Arugula companion plants are plants that can be grown near or with arugula to improve its growing condition, deter pests, and enhance its flavor.
Why is companion planting important in a garden?
Companion planting is important in a garden because it promotes the natural balance of the ecosystem, improves soil health, deters pests and diseases, and enhances the growth and flavor of crops.
What plants grow well with arugula?
Plants that grow well with arugula include tomatoes, beets, cucumbers, beans, carrots, radishes, herbs such as basil, dill, cilantro, and other salad greens.
What are the best companion plants for arugula?
The best companion plants for arugula are plants that deter garden pests, enhance its flavor and growth, and provide shade or protection. These include tomatoes, beets, celery, beans, and radishes.
Why is the companion planting of arugula important?
The companion planting of arugula is important because it can protect your crops from damaging pests like flea beetles and improve their growth and flavor. It is also an eco-friendly way to promote natural symbiosis in your garden.
What plants should you avoid planting near arugula?
Plants you should avoid planting near arugula include nightshades such as peppers, eggplants, and potatoes, as well as other members of the Brassica family, like broccoli, kale, and cauliflower. These plants may compete for nutrients, attract the same pests and diseases as arugula, or release chemicals that may inhibit arugula’s growth.
What is the best way to protect your arugula from damaging pests like flea beetles?
The best way to protect your arugula from flea beetles is to plant it near companion plants that deter these pests, such as tomatoes, beets, and cabbages. You can also cover it with row covers or use organic pest control methods to deter flea beetles.
What are the benefits of companion planting with arugula?
A: The benefits of companion planting with arugula include improved soil health, natural pest control, enhanced growth and flavor, and increased biodiversity. It also promotes a more sustainable and eco-friendly approach to gardening.
Can other plants benefit from growing near arugula?
Yes, other plants can benefit from growing near arugula because it can provide shade, deter pests, and improve soil health. For example, radishes grown near arugula can deter flea beetles and provide shade to the arugula, while herbs like basil and dill can add flavor to both crops.
Are there garden pests that arugula can naturally deter?
Yes, arugula’s pungent flavor can naturally deter garden pests like beetles, aphids, and cabbage worms, making it an excellent companion to other crops that are susceptible to these pests.
Overall, planting companion plants for your arugula can help to keep your arugula safe and healthy. By choosing plants that thrive in similar growing conditions, you can create a garden that’s both beautiful and productive.