When it comes to growing strawberries, the benefits of companion planting are often overlooked.
Finding the right plants to place alongside your strawberries can have numerous advantages, including improving their overall health, increasing their fruit yield, and attracting beneficial insects.
Certain herbs, flowers, and vegetable species make great companions for these berry-bearing beauties.
What to Plant with Strawberries?
From the herb family, consider planting borage, caraway, dill, or thyme. In terms of flowers, most gardeners agree that marigolds are the way to go. In a vegetable bed, strawberries can be planted together with legumes, asparagus, garlic, or rhubarb.
Herbs to Plant with my Strawberries
Borage is an excellent choice of herb to plant with strawberries. Its brightly-hued flowers attract pollinators, as well as predatory insects that feed on strawberry-plaguing pests.
Caraway also attracts flies and wasps, which attack common strawberry bugs, like weevils and Lygus. Both of these herbs add valuable trace minerals to the soil.
If slugs are a problem in your garden, consider planting dill in your strawberry beds. This fragrant herb naturally repels slugs, which any home-grower knows can destroy entire crops in a matter of hours.
To deter worms, plant thyme. Not only does it prevent these pesky creatures, but it also boosts the overall health of strawberry plants by smothering enthusiastic weeds and retaining soil moisture.
For fertilization purposes, consider growing chives in your garden beds. Chive leaves spread across the base of strawberry plants serve as an excellent form of mulch.
Other beneficial herbs to plant with strawberries include catnip, mint, and coriander.
In each case, be aware that herbs are fast-growing and can easily take over beds, so consider planting them in containers.
Flowers to Plant with My Strawberries
Marigolds and strawberries make a fine pair and are often found growing alongside one another.
This is because the fragrant and distinct aroma emitted by sunny marigolds is said to deter bugs and pests that habitually snack on strawberries.
Indeed, it is also believed that marigolds are effective against certain weeds and soil-dwelling nematodes that can be exceedingly harmful to strawberry crops.
Vegetables to Plant with My Strawberries
Legumes are an excellent choice for growing with strawberries. Peas and beans provide bacteria that can improve the nitrogen levels in soil, boosting the growth and yield of strawberry plants.
Certain types of legumes, like bush beans, have the advantage of chasing away beetles and other harmful pests.
If space is tight in your beds, you can plant asparagus as a neighbor to your strawberries. Their rooting systems are entirely different, meaning that there is little to no competition for space and nutrients.
In terms of deterring pests, consider growing garlic. The pungent, distinct smell of garlic keeps away the pesky insects that feed on ripe strawberries, ensuring that you don’t need to share your harvest with the neighborhood bugs.
Rhubarb, too, makes a delightful companion for strawberry plants as it grows at the same time of year and generally at the same rate. The presence of rhubarb plants among strawberries also deters the growth of weeds while attracting pollinators.
Horseradish, lettuce, onions, and spinach are also good neighbors for strawberries.
What to Avoid Planting with Strawberries
When planning out your beds, avoid placing plants together that need to compete for nutrients. In the case of strawberries, it’s best to steer away from brassica plants like cabbage and broccoli.
Tomatoes and eggplants, in turn, can encourage the spread of fungal diseases that are fatal to strawberries.
Benefits of Companion Planting
Strawberries are easy to grow and look after, but there are a number of environmental factors and pests that can negatively influence their growth and, by default, their fruit yield.
Selecting the right plants to have in a bed with your strawberries may solve many of your issues in advance.
Appropriate companion plants add nutrients and minerals to the soil, which boost the overall health of your strawberries.
They can provide physical shelter, too, in terms of shading low-growing runners from the hot afternoon sun or deterring the growth of weeds.
Furthermore, one of the most significant advantages of companion planting for strawberries is that certain herbs, flowers, and vegetables attract beneficial insects that pollinate and protect your plants.
Frequently Asked Questions about What to Plant with Strawberries
When is the best time to plant strawberries?
Strawberries fare best when they are planted in the spring. If you choose different varieties of strawberries when setting out your beds, you can also prolong your harvest, as they fruit at various stages during the summer.
Is it better to plant strawberries in containers or garden beds?
For long-term growing, it is better to plant strawberries in the ground. While equally rewarding, growing strawberry plants in containers may shorten their lifespans and only allow for a single growing season.
What do I do if my strawberries are overgrown?
If your strawberries are growing a bit too wildly, you need to cut them back. Two weeks after harvesting your fruits, cut back your strawberry plants and remove any sections that look weak or thin. Clean the bed thoroughly and lay down new mulch.
Strawberries are an absolute treat in the garden, particularly when it comes to harvesting their fruit.
Of course, you are more likely to see a good harvest if you take steps to give your strawberry plants their best chance of health and well-being.
Planting companions for your strawberries boosts their growth and adds aesthetic value to your garden beds.
Marcel runs the place around here. He has a deep passion for houseplants & gardening and is constantly on the lookout for yet another special plant to add to his arsenal of houseplants, succulents & cacti.
Marcel is also the founder of Iseli International Commerce, a sole proprietorship company that publishes a variety of websites and online magazines.