21 Best Companion Plants for Tomatoes

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When it comes to growing tomatoes, choosing the right companion plants can make a world of difference. It helps boost tomato yields, improve the flavor, and naturally control pests.

Companion planting is a gardening technique that involves growing different plants together to enhance their growth and deter pests. In this article, we will explore some of the top companion plants for tomatoes and how they can benefit your tomato plants. These companion plants will help you create a thriving and productive tomato garden.

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1. Garlic

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Garlic and tomatoes not only go hand-in-hand on plates and dishes but also are companion plants in the garden as well. Garlic emits a strong aroma that transfers to tomatoes over time enhancing the flavor and taste of the fruits that are considered vegetables by nutritionists.

As garlic emits a strong odor, it acts as a natural pest and insects deternt keeping the predatory insects that feast on tomatoes damaging the plant at bay. Moreover, garlic also helps in loosening the soil helping tomatoes expand its network of fibrous roots. They do not compete for nutrition on soil making them ideal companions to plant together.

2. Onions

Source : thespruce

Onions are often considered an ideal companion plant for tomatoes due to their mutually beneficial relationship. Onions, just like earlier mentioned garlic, emit a strong scent that helps repel pests like aphids, carrot flies, and spider mites, which are common threats to tomatoes.

Onions also act as a natural deterrent to larger pests, such as rabbits and deer. Onions also have shallow root systems, allowing them to grow harmoniously alongside tomato plants without competing for nutrients and water. Furthermore, onions also enhance the flavor of tomatoes when grown together, creating a more robust and flavorful harvest.

3. Pepper

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Pepper is an excellent companion plant for tomatoes due to several advantages. Firstly, peppers help repel pests that commonly affect tomatoes, such as aphids and spider mites. Additionally, the strong aroma of peppers acts as a natural deterrent for pests, reducing the risk of infestations.

Moreover, peppers provide shade for the tomato plants, helping to protect them from excessive heat and sunburn. This symbiotic relationship also extends to the soil, as peppers and tomatoes have similar nutrient requirements, allowing them to share resources efficiently and promote healthy growth.

4. Carrots

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Carrots make excellent companion plants for tomatoes due to their compatible growth habits and beneficial effects on each other's growth. Carrots have a shallow root system that helps break up the soil and improve aeration, which in turn benefits the deep-rooted tomato plants.

In return, tomatoes benefit carrots by providing shade during the hotter summer months. Tomatoes can be harvested without any interference to the carrots as they continue to grow and harvesting carrots leaves larger gaps in the soil further loosening it up for the tomato plant to increase its root network making it a win-win situation.

5. Asparagus

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Asparagus plants appear delicate but are great companion plants to go together with tomatoes in the vegetable garden. Asparagus plants produce a natural chemical compound called asparagusic acid, which acts as a natural repellent for certain pests like nematodes, which can be harmful to tomato plants.

In terms of sharing nutrients available in the soil, asparagus plants are heavy feeders and require nutrient-rich soil. This means they can help improve the soil fertility by drawing up nutrients from deeper layers and making them available for the tomato plants. Their deep roots loosen up the soil helping the fibrous tomatoes roots to stretch more easily as well, promoting their growth.

6. Basil

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Basil are often considered medicinal plants in different cultures and they have some properties to help other plants in the garden as well. Basil emits a strong fragrance that repels pests like aphids, tomato hornworms, and whiteflies, which are common tomato garden pests helping to minimize the chemical pesticides.

Taste-wise, growing basil near tomatoes can enhance the flavor of the tomatoes. The volatile oils released by the basil plants can transfer to the tomatoes, resulting in a more flavorful harvest. Moreover, they also do not compete for nutrients in the same soil layer as basil has much shallower roots than tomatoes making them compatible with one another.

7. Radishes

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Radishes are considered one of the best companion plants for tomatoes due to their ability to improve soil health. Radishes are known as bioaccumulators, meaning they absorb nutrients from the soil and store them in their leaves and roots. When the radishes are harvested or decay, these nutrients are released back into the soil, improving its fertility.

Additionally, radishes have a deep taproot system that helps break up compacted soil, allowing for better water and nutrient absorption for both the radishes and tomatoes. This root system also improves soil aeration, benefiting the overall health and growth of tomato plants.

8. Buckwheat

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Buckwheat with its abundant nectar attracts a wide range of beneficial insects such as bees, hoverflies, and ladybugs. These insects help in pollinating tomatoes and also prey on common tomato pests like aphids, whiteflies, and spider mites, improving the yield of both buckwheat and tomatoes.

Additionally, buckwheat has a fibrous root system that helps in breaking up compacted soil and improving its structure. Its roots also release organic acids that aid in the breakdown of organic matter, making nutrients more available to nearby plants, including tomatoes. Due to its ability to improve soil quality and attract beneficial insects, buckwheat is one of the best companion plants to grow together with tomatoes.

9. Peas

Source : thespruce

Peas make excellent companion plants for tomatoes due to several advantages. Firstly, peas are nitrogen-fixing plants, meaning they convert nitrogen from the air into a form that is easily absorbed by plants, including tomatoes. This boosts the overall nitrogen levels in the soil, promoting healthier growth and higher yields for tomatoes.

Additionally, peas have shallow roots that help improve soil structure and prevent erosion, benefiting the root development of tomatoes. Lastly, the tall and bushy nature of pea plants can provide some shade and support for delicate tomato plants, protecting them from excessive sunlight or wind damage.

10. Green Beans

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Green beans make an excellent companion plant for tomatoes due to their complementary growth habits and beneficial effects on each other. The climbing nature of green beans allows them to utilize vertical space, reducing competition for ground space with tomatoes.

Moreover, green beans, just like the peas discussed earlier, fix nitrogen in the soil, which is beneficial for tomato plants as they require high nitrogen levels. In return, tomatoes provide shade to the shallow-rooted green beans, preventing them from being scorched by direct sunlight. This symbiotic relationship helps both plants thrive and maximize their productivity.

11. Cucumbers

Source : thespruce

Cucumbers act as a natural ground cover, providing shade to the soil around the base of tomato plants, reducing water evaporation, and preventing weed growth making cucumbers and tomatoes excellent companion plants, benefiting each other.

Cucumbers help repel pests that commonly attack tomatoes, such as aphids and spider mites, acting as a deterrent and protecting the tomato plants. Furthermore, the sprawling nature of cucumber vines helps provide a beneficial microclimate for tomatoes, shielding them from excessive sunlight and wind, thus promoting healthier growth and higher yields.

12. Lettuce

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Lettuce and tomato plants make a great pair to grow together in the garden as growing them together helps save space and benefit each other in numerous ways. Lettuce has a small but thick growth habit which helps in suppressing the weeds and retaining the moisture of the soil benefitting the tomato plants.

Similarly, they also do not compete for nutrients available in the soil as lettuce prey upon the topmost layer of the soil while tomatoes dig a bit deeper into a separate layer. The leafy vegetable sheds some of its leaves during growth which after decaying restores the nutrients in the soil adding to the available resources for a bountiful tomato harvest.

13. Celery

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Celery is an excellent companion plant for tomatoes due to its ability to enhance the growth and flavor of tomatoes and repel pests. Celery emits a strong aroma that naturally deters pests like aphids, whiteflies, and spider mites, which are common threats to tomatoes.

Additionally, celery's tall and leafy structure provides shade and acts as a natural mulch, conserving soil moisture and preventing weed growth around tomato plants. This symbiotic relationship between celery and tomatoes promotes healthier growth, reduces the need for chemical pesticides, and ultimately improves the overall yield and taste of tomatoes.

14. Thyme

Source : lovethegarden

Thyme, an herb plant, and tomatoes a fruit mostly considered vegetables due to their nutritional values, make a great duo to grow together in the garden as companion plants. thyme's low-growing nature provides a ground cover, suppressing weed growth and conserving soil moisture aiding to growth and yield of tomatoes.

The two do not compete for the same nutrients in the soil as thyme has a much shallower root system than tomatoes thus they do not interferer with one another's growth. In fact, thyme helps to keep pests such as whiteflies, aphids, and tomato hornworms, at bay and protect the tomato plants from infestations.

15. Sweet Alyssum

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Sweet Alyssum with its beautiful and colorful flowers attracts pollinators such as bees and hoverflies that help to pollinate tomatoes as well as increase the yield of the plant. Sweet Alyssum also acts as a ground cover, reducing soil erosion and preventing weed growth around the tomato plants.

The low-growing flower has a shallow root system covering just the top layer of the soil, meaning tomatoes and the flowering plant will never compete for the same nutrients available in the soil not interfering with each other's growth. In addition to the practical benefit, Sweet Alyssum will also make the garden look beautiful along with the red and orange tomato fruits.

16. Borage

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Borage and tomatoes form a dynamic duo in the garden. The vibrant blue flowers of Borage not only add a touch of beauty but also attract pollinators like bees, enhancing the tomato fruit set. Borage has deep roots that mine essential nutrients from the soil, benefiting neighboring tomatoes by improving soil quality. 

Moreover, it acts as a natural pest repellent, deterring tomato hornworms and other unwanted bugs. This partnership boosts tomato yields, supports biodiversity, and ensures a healthier, more pest-resistant garden – a win-win for both taste and aesthetics. At last, borage and tomato make a great salad for you to snack on.

17. Oregano

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Oregano and tomatoes team up brilliantly in the garden. These aromatic herbs deter pesky pests that often plague tomatoes, like aphids and spider mites, thanks to their strong scent.

Additionally, oregano's low, bushy growth pattern serves as a natural ground cover, reducing weed growth around tomato plants and helping retain soil moisture. When you harvest these two together, you'll have a mouthwatering combination for your culinary adventures – a match made in the garden and the kitchen, boosting flavor and keeping your tomatoes thriving.

18. Nasturtiums

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Nasturtiums are not just for aesthetics as they are completely edible flower plants mostly used as a garnish for your tomato salad, don't forget to throw in some cucumbers and carrots as well. Nasturtiums and tomatoes make a great pair when grown together as they benefit each other's yield and growth.

The beautiful flower plant doubles as a natural protector for tomatoes, warding off aphids and whiteflies with their pungent aroma. Their sprawling growth creates a living cover, shielding the soil from the harsh sun and preserving moisture for the tomatoes' root system.

19. Marigolds

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Marigolds and tomatoes are a dynamic duo in the garden. These vibrant flowers not only add a pop of color but also serve as excellent companions for your tomato plants. Marigolds release natural compounds into the soil that deter nematodes and other harmful pests, protecting your precious tomatoes.

Plus, their strong aroma can help confuse and repel insects that might otherwise munch on your tomatoes. This partnership promotes a healthier, pest-resistant tomato patch, making it a win-win for both beauty and bountiful harvests.

20. Sage

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Sage and tomatoes go together like best friends who are also neighbors making them one of the perfect companion plants to grow together. Sage is a drought-tolerant herb that doesn't compete with tomatoes for water. Instead, it actually helps by reducing soil moisture loss through its dense foliage.

Sage emits natural oils that deter certain pests that can bother tomato plants, acting as a protective shield. It's like having a garden bodyguard. So, by sharing the same soil space, sage complements tomatoes perfectly, conserving water, preventing pests, and ensuring a flourishing partnership that benefits both plants and gardening success.

21. Crimson Clover

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Crimson Clover, a vibrant and beneficial companion for tomatoes, brings a burst of color and a host of advantages when planted together. This cover crop isn't just a pretty face; it helps control weeds, boosts soil fertility, and attracts pollinators.

Its roots prevent soil erosion, while its nitrogen-fixing abilities enrich the earth, providing a natural fertilizer for your tomato plants. Together, they create a dynamic duo, keeping your garden healthy and vibrant. So, consider this scarlet beauty as the perfect partner for your tomatoes, adding both color and nutrients to your garden canvas.