Marigolds are dependable bloomers that add a spark of bright color to the garden throughout summer and early autumn. Gardeners value these popular plants for more than their appearance, as many think they have pest-repellent properties that help keep nearby plants healthy and free of harmful bugs. Read on to learn about companion planting with marigold flowers.
Benefits of Marigold Plant Companions
Scientific research doesn’t always back up claims that marigold companion planting repels pests, but gardeners with years of hands-on experience say otherwise. Your mileage may vary, so experiment with different combinations to discover what works best in your garden.
It certainly never hurts to try planting a few marigold plant companions in your garden. In fact, Cornell Cooperative Extension says that marigolds just might keep a number of pests in check, including:
- Cabbage maggots
- Potato beetles
- Corn earworms
- Cucumber beetles
- Flea beetles
- Japanese beetles
- Squash bugs
Marigolds have a distinctive aroma that may even discourage rabbits from nibbling your prize posies.
What to Plant with Marigolds
There are a number of vegetable plants that can benefit from the addition of marigolds in the garden. Here are some common vegetables that enjoy marigold companions:
When planting flowers and foliage plants as marigold plant companions, select those that share the same growing conditions. Marigolds are drought-tolerant plants that thrive in sunny, hot weather. They aren’t fussy about soil type, but well-drained soil is an absolute must.
Consider size as well, as marigolds range from petite, 6-inch (15 cm.) French marigolds to 3-foot (1 m.) African marigolds that show up best in the back of the flower bed.
While you can plant marigolds alongside flowers of similar hues, you can also choose plants in complementary colors. For example, blue and purple flowers are complementary for orange and yellow marigolds. A color wheel can help you determine what complementary colors might work in your garden.
Here are a few ideas to help you decide what to plant with marigolds: