Radishes are the favorite veggie of many gardeners because they’re cold-hardy and don’t take a lot of time to be ready to harvest.
Generally speaking, these plants aren’t hard to maintain once you get the gist, but there’s one method that can help you maximize their growth, deter pests, and boost flavor: companion planting.
I’ll show you some of the best radish companion plants and reveal a couple of secrets for a flourishing veggie garden!
Let’s get started!
Well, the first plant on my list isn’t a veggie but rather a captivating flowering plant, calendula aka pot marigold.
There are many reasons why you should grow calendula in your garden; it’s a long-blooming plant often used for making a natural fabric dye. Additionally, its gorgeous looks will help you get a stunning garden display.
But what’s in it for radishes in all this? Calendula is renowned for its ability to deter pests and attract beneficial insects. It will act as a trap crop for aphids and this feature is super beneficial for radishes because aphids can cause severe damage.
Delicious peppers, eggplants, and tomatoes are classified as nightshades and their harvest is reserved for late summer and early fall.
These plants do take a lot of time to mature so you should add some fast-growing veggies between your nightshades to extend the growing season. Radishes will do a perfect job because you can harvest them in spring and then again in early fall.
Radishes and nightshades won’t compete for nutrients so both will be happy and healthy!
Alliums don’t make good companions to each other but they are perfect for growing around many other plants, including radishes.
Onion, garlic, shallots, and leeks are great plants for controlling smaller pests but they’ll also repel deer and rabbits from your garden.
Since Alliums don’t grow very tall, they won’t compete for light with radishes. This means you’ll be able to harvest a radish or two before any of the Alliums mature.
Flavorful cukes are always welcome in our gardens. If you already have some, you may know that these plants, along with other cucurbits, are susceptible to squash bugs.
According to research (1), radishes can deter these bugs and keep your cucumbers pest-free.
But that’s not all! Cucumbers and their cousins have a vining growth habit, which means you can plant radishes below them and save a lot of space.
5. Beans And Peas
Legumes, including beans and peas, get along well with many herbs and veggies such as radishes.
Planting legumes in your garden is actually one of the best ways to add nitrogen to the soil, and healthier soil means healthier radishes.
Similarly to cucurbits, beans and peas have a vining growth habit, which means you can plant your radishes below them and use all the space available.
Marigolds and veggie gardens are a match made in heaven. These spectacular flowering plants have pest-repelling properties and are very effective against aphids.
Your garden will look amazing during the marigold blooming season, i.e., summer and fall, and your radishes will be happy and healthy.
French marigolds are an excellent option, or you could go with some dwarf varieties that are suitable for smaller gardens.
Cooler weather isn’t suitable for many veggies but spinach and radishes don’t mind it, which is why they’re often grown near each other.
You’ll save a lot of space and your spinach will grow better because radishes are veggies that grow under the ground and break the tough soil.
Radishes also act as trap crops for flea beetles, which means you’ll be the only one munching on your spinach leaves.
If you haven’t heard of chervil, perhaps French parsley rings a bell. This plant is a true gem among culinary herbs.
But the flavor isn’t the only thing that makes this plant awesome; it’s super easy to grow and any beginner can keep it healthy.
Radishes and chervil are true allies in the garden. The latter is renowned for its ability to deter pesky pests, especially aphids.
Additionally, this herb will enhance the taste of your radishes so it’s a win-win situation!
These veggies prefer cooler weather and can easily bolt if exposed to hot temperatures. To avoid this, you can plant it in spring right next to your radishes.
If you have a smaller garden, then this dynamic duo is perfect for you.
Both plants are relatively easy to maintain and won’t compete for sunlight.
Many growers, especially beginners, struggle with carrot growth, especially in the seed sprouting stage. That’s where radishes step in.
Radish seeds don’t take as long to sprout as carrot seeds. As soon as they emerge, the soil will be less susceptible to crusting over, which will result in successful and faster carrot seed germination.
As you can see, radishes have many friends and can benefit from companion planting in many ways. Let other plants help you fight pests and save as much space as possible!
1. DeJong, D. (2017). Companion planting: Effects of radishes on squash bugs.
Environmental Studies Undergraduate Student Thesis, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.