Companion Planting to Improve Your Pumpkin Patch
Many gardeners know the value of placing certain plants next to one another when planning their garden. Doing so can provide extra benefits for your pumpkin plants, whether you are growing them in a large garden spot or containers on your patio.
What Is Companion Planting?
Companion planting is the practice of planting different plants in proximity to help one another grow or even protect each other from pests. Planning your garden spot to take advantage of the benefits of companion planting is a great way to ensure your pumpkin plants have an excellent growing environment, no matter the kind of pumpkin you are growing.
Companion Planting to Attract the Right Insects
One of the most beneficial reasons to practice companion planting with your pumpkins is the ability to attract specific insects. For example, pumpkin vines produce both male and female flowers, both of which are vital to producing pumpkin fruits.
Female pumpkin flowers require pollination, which requires bees. You can attract bees to your garden by planting certain herbs like mint and thyme or flowers like lavender close to your pumpkin patch.
Companion Planting to Repel Insects
Companion planting is also vital when it comes to keeping harmful insects away from your burgeoning pumpkin plants. Certain insects will decimate your pumpkin leaves, patch in no time at all, especially if you do not identify the problem promptly.
Planting such companions as garlic and onion near your pumpkin patch will help repel some garden pests. The same holds true for both dill and marjoram.
Companion Planting to Control Weeds
Another reason to practice companion planting is to control weeds. While pumpkin plants themselves are not overly prone to weediness, their colossal foliage and sprawling vines provide a natural weed suppressant for nearby plants. Plants commonly grown together in the same area are:
- Corn (all varieties).
- Beans (climbing or pole beans).
- Pumpkins (all types).
As the corn grows, the stalks provide a natural pole for beans to climb. The pumpkins offer weed and moisture retention for all three plants. This method of planting is prevalent among organic gardeners.
Companion Plants to Enhance Taste
Another great reason to place certain plants close to your pumpkins is to enhance the taste. Marjoram is an herb commonly planted next to pumpkins because it is known to give pumpkins a richer flavor.
Using the practice of companion planting can help you have the most beautiful looking and tasting pumpkins in the neighborhood, plus enables you to avoid using harmful chemicals to treat problems.