Rosemary is a highly aromatic herb with a strong, resinous and piney flavor that goes well with fatty and gamey meats like lamb and pork. Rosemary is especially popular in the Mediterranean region and has been used for thousands of years in that part of the world. Rosemary’s botanical name is Rosemarinus officinalis, and it belongs to the same family as mint and thyme. Knowing which plants to plant alongside rosemary will help to ensure its health, as well as that of your garden as a whole. Here is a look at some of the best companion plants for rosemary and a few that you should avoid.
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Rosemary grows well alongside strawberry, which can be picky about its companions. Strawberry plants grow low over the ground, so it overshadows weeds and crowds them out, which allows both strawberry and taller rosemary plants to thrive. Rosemary can repel some of the pests that damage strawberry plants.
Bean plants are famous for their ability to improve garden soil by fixing nitrogen. The improved soil quality benefits all plants, including rosemary. Rosemary returns the favor by protecting bean plants from the bean beetle, which bores into bean pods and damages the leaves.
One of the difficulties with cultivating carrots is the pest known as the carrot fly. Carrot flies lay eggs and their larvae bore into the carrot roots destroying the crop. Rosemary’s insect repellent properties are effective against this insect. Simply plant your rosemary in the vicinity of carrots to help keep carrot flies away.
Another aromatic herb, lavender is often planted alongside rosemary. Having both in your garden can benefit your other plants since they attract pollinators and help to discourage pests, including larger ones like deer. They are not particularly beneficial for each other, but they do thrive in the same environments, which means that you can plant them together.
Like rosemary, sage prefers dry soil and won’t thrive in wet soil. The fact that they like the same kind of soil makes them great companions for each other. They will also both help to keep pests out of your garden.
One of the main benefits of companion planting is the fact that it can attract pollinators, which can benefit all of your plants. Alyssum is a flower that can bring pollinators to your garden while being a visually attractive addition. Rosemary’s ability to discourage insect pests will protect the alyssum so that it can benefit your garden. More pollinators mean increased yield for fruits in your garden like peppers, tomatoes, and eggplants.
Many gardeners consider broccoli to be one of the best companion plants for rosemary. The broccoli benefits from the pairing, since rosemary is a great insect repellent.
What plants should not be planted with rosemary?
There are several plants that will keep your rosemary from thriving if you grow them together. Mint is one of the main ones. Mint is a relative of rosemary. It can take up space and crowd out your rosemary as it competes for the same nutrients. You will also want to avoid planting basil — another rosemary relative — in the vicinity of rosemary due to the different water requirements. Basil requires a lot of water, and overwatering can kill your rosemary. Planting rosemary near potatoes and tomatoes can increase the risk of the rosemary being affected by blight.