Are you looking to enhance your squash plants’ growth, flavor, and health? If so, you have landed on the right page as we will explore the best companion plants for Squash and discover the perfect partners for your squash plants!
It does not matter whether you are an experienced gardener or just starting; growing a healthy and bountiful squash crop is challenging. But you can rely on us as today we are offering you a choice of the right companion plants to help you achieve incredible results.
Table of Contents
Why Use Squash Companion Plants?
Companion planting has numerous benefits, including deterring pests and diseases, improving soil health, to increasing yields!
Growing a companion plant with the main crop develops a symbiosis relationship between the two crops. They derive the advantages of each other and help themselves grow luxuriant.
Hence, farmers and home gardeners rely heavily on companion plants to ensure their main crop grows healthy and the yield is abundant. However, you ought to know what combines best. Not any random plants can be added with another just for the sake of making them companion plant.
In this piece, we will discuss the 8 plants you can grow with squash, and they act like the best companion plants for it. We will discuss the symbiotic relationship and how these different companion plants help grow squash plants. We will also look at the plants that can be dangerous for squash if grown along with it. Keep reading to know.
Benefits of Using Companion Plants for Squash
- Help improve overall health: The first and obvious one is that it can help improve your squash plants’ overall health and productivity. Few plants have some natural properties that can avoid pests and diseases. Few others can even provide valuable nutrients and improve soil health.
- Making the most of limited garden space: You have the advantage of making the most of limited garden space by using plants that grow well together which maximizes your yield. Few plants have complementary growth habits, like providing shade or ground cover to help protect and support your squash plants.
- Create a more diverse and sustainable garden ecosystem: When you practice companion planting, you can create a more varied and sustainable garden ecosystem. You can benefit from a range of insects and other organisms to create a balanced and healthy environment that supports the growth of all your plants, including your squash.
Best Companion Plants for Squash
Now we shall discuss some of the significant companion plants you can grow with Squash. Each has its benefits, so read on and choose the best one.
First on our list is Nasturtiums, an excellent companion plant for squash. The main reason is that they are known to repel squash bugs, cucumber beetles, and other pests.
Nasturtiums also contain a compound called nepetalactone which is toxic for insects that, make them effective natural pesticides.
Not just this, it is also known to be beneficial to insects like ladybugs and parasitic wasps, which can help control pests in the garden.
You can try out Marigold as a companion plant for squash. This plant produces alpha-terthienyl, which is considered toxic to these insects. It has an excellent repelling quality against pests like whiteflies, aphids, and nematodes.
Marigolds are also known to improve soil health by releasing natural compounds that inhibit the growth of harmful soil-borne pathogens.
This plant, along with Nasturtiums, attracts bees which aid in pollinating summer squash flowers.
Radish is more often planted alongside the squash. It acts as a trap crop to help repel squash bugs and other pests. The scent of radish leaves attracts squash bugs. Then they will lay their eggs on them instead of the squash plants.
As squash bugs hatch, they feed on the radish leaves instead of the squash plants. Radishes also improve soil health by breaking up compacted soil and increasing soil aeration.
Nitrogen, as you know, is a critical nutrient that helps grow. Beans are another excellent companion plant for squash because they fix nitrogen in the soil. Growing beans in your garden will ensure plenty of nitrogen for your squash plants. Beans will also offer shade for squash plants and help them retain soil moisture.
Next on our list of Best Companion Plants for Squash is Corn. It is a natural trellis for squash plants and can help them grow vertically, saving space in the garden.
It will provide shade to squash plants and help in retaining soil moisture. But make sure you plant corn and squash far enough apart to avoid competition for resources.
Borage has broad leaves and is a flowering herb that attracts beneficial insects like bees and ladybugs. These insects can help pollinate squash plants, increase their chance of forming fruits, and control pests. Borage is also known to improve soil health and reduce the risk of soil-borne diseases.
This vegetable is known to complement well with other vegetables in your garden. It offers incredible companionship with the squash plant as both these vegetables share similar growing requirements. You can also combine borage with Squash and Tomatoes to make an excellent trio and promote even better cropping.
8. Red Clover
You can grow squash with a live mulch of red clover. Red Clover encourages predators like minute pirate bugs, big-eyed bugs, ground beetles, coccinellid beetles, and Pennsylvania leather wings.
Growing Red Clover in companionship with Squash will also control the squash pest population. It will also aid in improving the soil’s health and make it challenging for weeds to grow.
Companion Plants to Avoid With Squash
After knowing which plants to grow with squash, we must know which plants to avoid. Therefore, this article section will look at the plants to avoid growing with squash. Let’s have a brief look at them.
Under Brassicas, you have broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, etc. These plants need to get along better with squash as they are heavy feeders. They release chemicals that can inhibit the growth of squash and other related plants.
As these plants are heavy feeders, they consume plenty of nutrients from the soil, which will also curtail the nutrient consumption of squash. These plants also release chemicals that can inhibit the growth of squash and other related plants.
Fennel tends to produce chemicals that can hamper the growth of many plants, including squash. Also, fennel attracts pests like aphids and caterpillars, which can harm squash plants. Along with this, fennel has similar nutrient requirements as squash and can also compete for resources. When you plant them together, fennel can take up valuable space and nutrients that should be allocated to the squash plant. This competition can result in stunted growth and reduced yields for both plants.
It is often said that cucumber does not grow well with squash. The simple reason is that it eats up and competes for nourishment. If you plant it with squash, you can also create a sense of competition that can curtail the growth of squash.
Another aspect of cucumber is that it can steal away water from crops. So if your squash doesn’t get the proper water supply, it becomes dry, and therefore you should avoid planting cucumber with squash.
As you all know, Pumpkin looks and belongs to the same family as squash. But the interesting fact is that it does not grow well with squash. The significant reason behind this is the cross-pollination that can take place if you plant pumpkins along with the squash.
Potatoes grow well, but they’re nightshade crops that will prohibit the growth of the other plants. So if you grow them with squash, they will not get complete nutrition, resulting in no or poor growth. Therefore you should avoid growing it with squash.
Now that we know that companion planting is an effective and sustainable gardening method, it’s time to achieve mutual benefits. With squash, companion plants can repel pests, improve soil health and increase yield.
Some excellent companion plants for squash include marigolds, nasturtiums, beans, corn, and radishes. All these plants can easily deter harmful insects, fix nitrogen in the soil, and provide shade and support for the squash plants. By incorporating companion plants into your squash garden, you can create a thriving ecosystem that is both beautiful and productive.
With proper care and attention, you can quickly grow squash with its companion plants and have a bountiful harvest and a healthy, sustainable garden.