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Bad companion plants for cauliflower can be found in any garden! We are all familiar with the classic adage “two heads are better than one” — and the same can be said for plants, as companionship planting is a great way to reap the benefits of multiple plants in one space and keep your garden looking healthy and vibrant.
However, knowing which plants are beneficial companions and which should be avoided is essential. In this blog, we’ll discuss why planting companions is essential as well as which plants you should avoid when planting cauliflower!
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Bad Cauliflower Companion Plants List
Companion planting is the practice of growing different plants together to increase biodiversity, attract beneficial insects, and reduce pests. It is an age-old practice that has become increasingly popular in the gardening world.
The main idea behind companion planting is that certain plants can provide benefits to other plants growing nearby. For example, some plants act as natural repellents for certain pests, others act as nutrient sources for their neighbors, and some may even provide shade for more sensitive plants.
But it’s important to know which plants are beneficial companions and which plants should be avoided. Let’s see some you should definitely avoid planting with cauliflowers!
Pisum sativum or plainly known as the pea plant is a plant grown for its beautiful and flavorful seedpods. These plants are incredibly easy growers and are a valuable food source and condiment in cuisines across the globe.
The pea fruit is packed with vitamins, minerals, and other healthy micronutrients! This plant grows up to six feet tall and 12 inches wide, depending on its variety of it. It will perform best in full sun, organically rich soil, with acid to the neutral complexion. Peas will grow readily in light shade, but won’t produce as many crops as when grown in sun!
Peas take up to 70 days to be harvest-ready from the day of planting and will tolerate cool temperatures. You should sow it around six weeks before your last projected spring frost date. If you’d want your cauliflower and peas to grow happily, they should each be placed in a corner of their own.
Although pea is considered a good cover crop and is known to enrich the soil with nitrogen, you shouldn’t plant them near cauliflower. They just won’t work well with each other.
Although peas will bring nitrogen, they are susceptible to quite a number of pests including aphids, miners, bean beetles, slugs, and snails. Not only that, there are plenty of diseases they can share with the cauliflower — mosaic virus, root rot, and all kinds of molds will readily pass onto your cauliflower plants!
|Growing season||Spring to fall|
This plant is prized for its high vitamin content. It is a cool-season plant that’s grown for its thick edible stems with crispy green buds. They are typically grown either in spring or fall and can be eaten both fresh and cooked. Broccoli is a member of the Brassica family, which includes cabbage, kale, and cauliflower too — at the same time being poor companions among each other.
Broccoli grows up to 24 inches tall and 24 inches wide, and performs best in full sun and rich, moist, but well-drained soils. It adores pH levels of six and seven. Before planting these, you should add well-developed manure to the hole in the soil! Depending on the variety, broccoli takes up to 60 days to harvest from transplants, and around 160 days when developed from seed.
Broccoli is the single plant from the Brassica family that won’t work well with cauliflower! These are easy to care for and have the same nutrient needs, but you should avoid planting them as companion plants.
Broccoli provides a good ground cover and is rather helpful to fill out those empty spaces in the garden. However, it is rather aggressive too and will fight with other cultures for underground nutrients. Cauliflower is a heavy feeder as well and requires plenty of nutrients which it won’t be allowed in the presence of broccoli.
Furthermore, broccoli invites plenty of pests and diseases which it will share readily with your cauliflower. Most notably, these are flea beetles, snails, pigeons, root flies, downy mildew, and white blisters.
|Growing season||Late spring, early summer|
Strawberries are early-season plants producing glossy and deep red berries. Five-petaled white flowers are usually on most strawberry varieties. The blooms are adorned by yellow centers, which appear in early spring. These give way to lovely fruits just around early June.
These berries are tremendously popular, and have great ornamental value in any vegetable garden — strawberry patches are ravishing mounds of green leaves, hiding those beautiful fruits. Strawberries grow up to nine inches tall and around 18 inches wide.
Full sun lovers, these plants are best grown in fertile, well-drained, and moist soils. Let’s see what makes them such poor companions to our cauliflower.
Strawberries are one of the worst companions for cauliflowers. They basically won’t go well with any other plant in the Brassica family.
Cauliflower contains allelochemicals that have the potential of killing other cultures. Strawberry is one such plant that can be poorly affected by this chemical and may even die from being planted next to your cauliflower.
Besides, strawberries invite destructive insects and diseases to your garden — aphids, bugs, slugs, nematodes, gray mold, verticillium wilt, and root rot are all pestilences and diseases which can be promoted by your strawberries.
|Growing season||Summer, fall|
Squashes are vining plants with yellow flowers. These yellow flowers give way to large squash fruits — the most famous of which are pumpkins! The fruits of squash plants have a mild flavor and have a large number of applications in cuisines across the globe.
To maximize the growth of pumpkin plants you can add some compost in the fall to make the land more manured for the next growing season. Almost all plants of its family are easily grown from seeds and are quick and vigorous growers, offering natural mulch and spreading their vines all over the place!
Cauliflowers won’t have a pleasant time next to vining plants, and this holds especially true for pumpkins. Pumpkins can smother your cauliflowers and will kill off anything standing in their way. Pumpkin plants are not good companions for cauliflower because they shade the plant too much. Although cauliflower requires cool weather, pumpkins grow too tall. They end up taking up too much sunlight.
When pumpkin grows beside cauliflower, the latter does not get adequate sunlight. Sunlight is paramount for the growth and health of your plant through photosynthesis. Pumpkin shades the plant too much, blocking your cauliflower from the sun.
Companion planting is a great way to get the most out of your garden. But it’s important to know which plants are beneficial companions and which plants should be avoided. When planting cauliflower, it is essential to:
- Avoid plants such as peas, pumpkins, strawberries, and other members of the Brassica family of vegetables.
- In addition to avoiding certain companion plants, it is important to choose beneficial insects for companion planting with cauliflower. These insects can help to keep pest populations in check.
- When companion planting with cauliflower, it is important to choose plants that will not compete for nutrients. Fruit trees and demanding feeders are a great choice for companion planting with cauliflower, as they require more nutrients than cauliflower and will not compete with it for nutrients.
- In addition to trees and heavy feeders, some other plants are great for companions planting with cauliflower, such as beans, marigolds, dill, and garlic.
So don’t forget — when it comes to companion planting with cauliflower, don’t plant these bad companionship plants as they won’t stand a chance!