Thyme is a Mediterranean herb like rosemary and basil that has become associated with French cooking. But it’s versatile enough to be an effective ingredient in a range of cooking styles. There’s no better way to get access to a fresh herb than by growing it yourself. The ideal environment for growing thyme is sunny and dry, so you will want to plant it alongside other plants in your garden that have similar watering requirements and potentially provide additional benefits. This also applies if you are planting other herbs in the same container with thyme. So what are the best thyme companion plants? We profile six of the top thyme companion plants below, along with some that should not be planted with thyme.
Table of contents
Members of the Brassicaceae family — which includes cabbages — may benefit from being planted alongside thyme since thyme can repel pests that attack them. The list of Brassicaceae pests includes cabbage worms and aphids.
The presence of thyme can benefit blueberries for a couple of reasons: Thyme repels insects that can damage blueberry plants. Also, thyme can attract pollinators when it flowers, which can pollinate blueberry flowers.
Farmers commonly plant strawberries alongside herbs like thyme. Strawberry plants can be beneficial for thyme by providing ground cover. Strawberry plants grow close to the ground by sending out runners, which can help to smother weeds and ensure that the soil around thyme plants doesn’t dry out too quickly.
Like thyme, rosemary belongs to the mint family. While both thyme and rosemary are said to not like the company of other herbs, both can survive together because of their similar water and sunlight needs. Rosemary doesn’t provide any direct benefit to thyme, but they will both thrive in the same spot or container. Make sure to plant thyme in front of rosemary, since rosemary plants can grow taller than thyme and may shade it.
Sage is another Mediterranean herb that likes the same kind of growing environment as thyme, which means dry and sandy soil and lots of sunlight. Sage is another one of the thyme companion plants like rosemary that can grow taller than thyme, so you will want to plant thyme in front of them to ensure that it gets adequate sunlight.
Like thyme, lavender is an aromatic herb used in French dishes. There’s nothing about lavender that makes it particularly beneficial for thyme cultivation; however, it does like the same kind of environment, so it makes sense to plant it in the same patch in your garden, or it can share a container with thyme.
What herbs should not be planted with thyme?
The close proximity of cilantro plants may benefit thyme and other crops by attracting insect pollinators, but cilantro also likes wet soil. Basil is a relative of thyme but like moist soil and some varieties prefer shade, so it won’t be a good companion. As a result, it’s best to keep it away from your thyme plants. A member of the onion family, chives like even drier and sandier soil than thyme, so they probably won’t do well when planted in the same spot.