Companion Plants for Collard Greens 2024: The Complete List

Kasey Spencer
Companion Plants for Collard

Gardening enthusiasts often seek ways to optimize the growth and health of their plants. Choosing the right companion plants for collard greens can enhance their productivity and protect them from pests. By planting compatible species together, gardeners can create a symbiotic environment that benefits all plants.

Companion planting is an effective strategy for healthier and more resilient gardens. In this article, readers will explore the top ten companion plants that can greatly benefit collard greens, ensuring a thriving garden with minimal effort.

Companion Plants for Collard

1. Marigolds

Image: Envato Elements

Marigolds are a great companion plant for collard greens. Their strong scent repels many pests that would otherwise harm the collard greens. Marigolds are known to deter cabbage loopers, aphids, and beetles.

Planting marigolds near collard greens helps create a natural barrier against these pests. This can reduce the need for chemical pesticides. Additionally, marigolds are easy to grow and require minimal care.

Marigolds also attract beneficial insects such as ladybugs and parasitic wasps. These insects prey on harmful pests, providing an extra layer of protection for the collard greens. Moreover, marigolds can add color to the garden, enhancing its visual appeal.

To get the best results, marigolds can be planted around the border of the collard greens patch or placed between rows of collard greens. This strategic placement helps ensure that the marigolds’ pest-repelling qualities are most effective.

2. Borage

Borage Plant
Image: Envato Elements

Borage is an excellent companion plant for collard greens. It attracts bees and other pollinators, helping improve plant yields.

The bright blue flowers of borage also bring in beneficial insects like predatory wasps. These insects help control pests that could harm collard greens.

Additionally, borage deters pests such as tomato hornworms and cabbage worms. This makes it a strong ally in the garden.

Borage is known to improve the overall health of the soil. It adds trace minerals, such as potassium and calcium, which can benefit neighboring plants.

Borage grows quickly and can be used as a natural mulch. This helps keep the soil moist and reduces the need for extra watering.

It’s important to note that borage can self-seed. Gardeners should be prepared to manage their growth accordingly.

When planting borage next to collard greens, ensure there’s enough space for both plants to thrive. This will help them grow without competition for nutrients.

3. Mint

Fresh green mint
Image: Envato Elements

Mint is a fantastic companion plant for collard greens. Its strong aroma helps to repel pests like cabbage moths and flea beetles, which can harm collard greens.

By planting mint near collard greens, gardeners can reduce the need for chemical pesticides. This natural pest control method is safer for the environment.

Mint also improves the soil conditions. Its roots spread widely, helping to keep the soil loosened and aerated. This benefits the collard greens by promoting healthier root growth.

Gardeners should be careful, as mint can be very invasive. It’s best planted in containers to prevent it from overtaking other plants.

Mint’s ability to thrive in various conditions makes it a reliable companion. It can grow in partial shade, which means it won’t compete with collard greens for sunlight.

This adaptable herb not only aids in pest control and soil health but also enhances the flavor of the collard greens.

4. Dill

Dill growing in garden
Image: Envato Elements

Dill is an excellent companion plant for collard greens.

It helps repel cabbage worms, which are common pests for collard greens. Cabbage worms can cause significant damage, so having dill nearby can protect the leaves.

Dill also attracts helpful insects like ladybugs and hoverflies. These beneficial insects help control pest populations, reducing the need for chemical pesticides.

Planting dill near collard greens can enhance the overall health of the garden. This herb grows well in similar conditions and does not compete for nutrients, making it a harmonious addition to the garden bed.

Incorporating dill into the garden can provide additional culinary benefits. Its leaves and seeds are commonly used in cooking, adding both flavor and utility to the garden space.

Dill’s delicate, feathery foliage can also add visual interest to the garden, contributing to a more diverse and aesthetically pleasing planting area.

5. Garlic

Image: Envato Elements

Garlic is a strong companion plant for collard greens. It repels pests like aphids, cabbage worms, and spider mites, which can harm collard greens.

Garlic has natural sulfur compounds. These compounds act as a natural pesticide, creating a protective barrier around collard greens.

The tall garlic stalks also provide partial shade. This can keep the soil cooler and retain moisture, benefiting the collard greens.

Garlic and collard greens grow well together since they don’t compete heavily for nutrients. Garlic roots grow deeper, while collard greens have a shallower root system.

This combination helps improve soil structure and nutrient availability. Planting garlic near collard greens can lead to a healthier, more productive garden.

6. Chives

Image: Envato Elements

Chives are a smart choice for companion planting with collard greens. They have a strong scent that can help repel pests like aphids and beetles. This can keep the collard greens healthier and less damaged by insects.

Chives also attract beneficial insects such as bees, which can help with pollination. This is especially useful in a diverse garden where pollination is key to healthy plant growth.

The roots of chives release substances that can improve soil health. This can benefit the collard greens by providing better nutrients and aiding overall growth. Additionally, chives are easy to grow and don’t need much maintenance, making them a convenient addition to the garden.

Planting chives alongside collard greens can also save space in the garden. They can be planted close together without competing for resources, efficiently using garden space. The combination of these plants helps create a balanced and healthy garden ecosystem.

7. Onions

onions bulbing stage
Image: Envato Elements

Onions are one of the top companion plants for collard greens. Their strong scents can help deter pests like aphids, flea beetles, and cabbage worms. These pests can cause significant damage to collard greens, so planting onions nearby can protect the crops.

Onions also have shallow roots, which means they do not compete heavily with collard greens for nutrients or space. This makes them a good neighbor in the garden. Both plants can thrive together without hindering each other’s growth.

Onions can be harvested earlier than collard greens, allowing for staggered planting and harvesting schedules. This makes managing and planning the garden easier throughout the growing season. Their fast growth helps maximize the use of space in the garden.

By planting onions near collard greens, gardeners can benefit from enhanced pest control and efficient use of garden space. Their compatibility makes them an excellent choice for improving the garden’s overall health.

8. Thyme

Thyme herb

Thyme is a great companion plant for collard greens. It helps repel pests that might otherwise damage the collard greens. For example, it can keep away cabbage worms, which are known to eat the leaves of collard greens.

This herb also attracts beneficial insects to the garden. Bees and butterflies come for the thyme flowers, helping with pollination.

Thyme is easy to grow and doesn’t require much space. It can thrive in the same type of soil as collard greens. Both plants enjoy well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight.

Because thyme is a perennial, it can stay in the garden year-round. This provides a consistent pest control partner for your collard greens during every growing season.

Growing thyme alongside collard greens also adds variety to your garden. Its small, fragrant leaves and flowers give the garden an extra touch of beauty.

By planting thyme with collard greens, gardeners can create a more balanced and healthy garden ecosystem.

9. Chamomile

chamomile flowers
Image: Envato Elements

Chamomile is an excellent companion plant for collard greens. It helps attract beneficial insects like bees and butterflies to the garden, which can assist with pollination and pest control.

Chamomile is known to repel pests such as aphids. This can help reduce the need for chemical pesticides that might harm other plants in the garden.

Its roots add valuable nutrients to the soil. This can improve the overall health and growth of neighboring collard greens.

Chamomile also has a calming effect on other plants. It can boost the essential oils in its neighbors, making them more resistant to pests and diseases.

Its flowers can be harvested and dried for tea, offering additional benefits beyond gardening. This makes chamomile a versatile and beneficial addition to any garden with collard greens.

10. Sage

Vegetative sage

Sage is a beneficial companion plant for collard greens. It helps deter pests such as flea beetles and cabbage moths, which are common problems for collards.

Sage’s strong scent confuses and repels these insects, providing a natural form of pest control. This can reduce the need for chemical pesticides, making your garden more organic.

Sage can also improve the flavor of collard greens. Planting them together is a practical choice for both taste and pest management.

Another advantage is that sage attracts pollinators like bees, which are essential for a healthy garden ecosystem. This helps other plants in the garden as well.

It is a low-maintenance herb that thrives in soil conditions similar to collard greens. Both prefer well-drained soil and lots of sunlight.

Sage grows well without taking up much space, making it suitable for small gardens. It complements the larger, leafy collards without competing for resources.

These qualities make sage an excellent companion plant for collard greens. If you want to enhance your garden’s pest control and flavor, consider planting sage alongside your collard greens.

How to Effectively Plant Companion Crops

When planting companion crops, it’s important to focus on the right location, proper soil preparation, and the best planting times for each plant. These factors will help ensure a healthy and productive garden.

Choosing the Right Location

Choosing the right spot in your garden is crucial. Ensure each plant gets the correct amount of sunlight. Some companion plants might need full sun, while others prefer partial shade.

Spacing is also important. Make sure plants have enough room to grow without competing for nutrients, especially when planting larger companion crops like corn or rhubarb alongside collard greens.

Consider the microclimate of your garden. If certain areas are more sheltered from the wind, place delicate plants there. This will help protect them and improve their growth.

Soil Preparation Techniques

Preparing the soil correctly will help your companion crops thrive. Test the soil to determine its pH and nutrient levels. Most companion plants prefer slightly acidic to neutral soil.

Add compost or well-rotted manure to enrich the soil. This provides essential nutrients and improves soil texture.

Mulching is another key technique. Use organic mulch around your plants to retain moisture, regulate soil temperature, and prevent weeds. Be sure to keep mulch a few inches away from the base of the plants to prevent rot and pest issues.

Optimal Planting Times

Timing your planting is essential for successful companion crops. Research the growing seasons of each plant to determine the best time to plant them.

For instance, many herbs that benefit collard greens, like dill and mint, thrive in cooler weather. Stagger planting times to ensure that fast-growing plants don’t overshadow slower-growing ones.

Keep track of your planting schedule using a garden journal or calendar. This helps in planning and ensures you plant each crop at the optimal time. When planting, consider companion plants’ needs for temperature and frost tolerance to ensure they can grow well together.

Frequently Asked Questions

Companion planting with collard greens can be beneficial in many ways. Below, common questions about ideal companions, plants to avoid, and best practices are addressed.

What are ideal companion plants for collard greens to optimize growth?

Ideal companion plants for collard greens include marigolds, borage, mint, dill, and garlic. These plants help repel pests, attract beneficial insects, and improve overall plant health.

Are there any plants that should be avoided when planting near collards?

Certain plants, such as pole beans and tomatoes, should be avoided when planting near collard greens. These plants may compete for nutrients or attract harmful pests.

Intercropping collard greens with lettuce is recommended. Lettuce’s shallow roots don’t compete with collards and help maximize garden space.

Which companion plants are beneficial for kale and can the same be applied to collards?

Dill, marigolds, and garlic are beneficial for kale and also work well with collard greens. These plants help repel pests and attract beneficial insects.

How does companion planting with mustard greens affect collard greens?

Mustard greens can attract pests that also feed on collards. It’s best to avoid planting mustard greens close to collard greens to minimize pest problems.

What considerations should be taken when choosing what to plant after harvesting collards?

After harvesting collards, it’s important to rotate crops. Plant legumes like beans or peas to add nitrogen to the soil and improve its fertility for future planting.

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