Brussels sprouts are members of the Cruciferae family (which includes kale, cabbage, broccoli, collard greens and cauliflower). These cousins all do well as companion plants for Brussels sprouts simply because they have similar nutritional, water and light requirements. The downside of planting these relatives together is that they also share similar pests and diseases. Are there other Brussels sprouts companion plants that might be a better choice? Read on to find out.
Brussels Sprout Plant Companions
The nature of companion planting is situating one or more species of plants in close proximity to another for one or both benefit. While the Cruciferae gang may like to hang together in the garden, the fact that they share pests and disease problems makes them less than ideal companions for Brussels sprouts. In other words, if a disease tends to infect broccoli, it’s a good probability that it will take a liking to one or several of the other cole crops.
Introducing other Brussels sprout companion plants outside of the family will create diversity in the garden, which will make it less likely for diseases and pests to be spread around. The question is, what to grow with Brussels sprouts?
What to Grow with Brussels Sprouts?
Sure, some people are loners, but by the very nature of being human, most of us like a companion or two, someone to share our life with and help us when we need it. Plants are the same way; most of them do very well with companion plants and Brussels sprouts are no exception.
Brussels sprouts are a favorite of dozens of pests that include:
Some of these aromatic plants are pleasantly scented, such as basil and mint. Others are more pungent, like garlic, which is said to repel Japanese beetles, aphids and blight. Marigolds are also said to deter pests and when they are tilled into the earth, they release a substance that repels nematodes. Nasturtiums are another flower that companions well with Brussels sprouts and is said to repel squash bugs and whiteflies.
Interestingly, although many of the cole crops shouldn’t be planted too close together, mustard can act as a trap crop. In other words, mustard planted near Brussels sprouts will attract the pests that normally feed on the sprouts. When you see that the insects are attacking the mustard, dig it up and remove it.
Other plants that companion well with Brussels sprouts include: