Boost your harvest and keep pests away with these cilantro companion plants.
Cilantro is a versatile and fast-growing herb commonly used in salsas, salads, and rice dishes. It also is a fantastic companion plant in vegetable and herb gardens. As a cold-hardy herb, cilantro grows best with other cool-weather crops. This plant is a top choice for growing in small-space gardens and containers.
Anise has a licorice-like flavor, and it’s often used to elevate the taste of roasted dishes and baked goods. While anise is less commonly grown than many other culinary herbs, it has similar growing needs as cilantro, and these two herbs will grow well together in container gardens or larger herb beds. Even better, growing cilantro near anise plants enhances the anise growth.
Basil and cilantro have similar growing needs, and they grow beautifully together in large herb gardens and patio planters. Top choices for small-space growers and urban gardeners, basil and cilantro don’t take up a lot of space, and they’re easy to fit into balcony gardens and windowsill herb gardens. You can also grow basil and cilantro in light shade, which gives you more planting options for these two tasty herbs.
Beans and Peas
Beans, peas, and other plants in the legume family fix nitrogen in the soil, which improves soil health and makes more nutrients available for nearby plants. Since nitrogen is particularly important for supporting leafy growth, planting legumes near cilantro can help you grow a lusher crop of fresh cilantro leaves. On top of that, cilantro is slower to bolt when it’s grown in the cool shade of vining beans and peas.
Brassica vegetables, like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage, are some of the most pest-prone veggies in the garden, but companion planting can help. Many strongly scented herbs, including cilantro, repel some of the most common brassica pests and reduce the need for other pest prevention measures. Moreover, if you allow cilantro to flower, cilantro blooms attract parasitic wasps, syrphid flies, and other predatory insects that feed on brassica pests.
Like cilantro, dill doesn’t grow well in the heat and tends to bolt in summer. Keeping cilantro and dill together in spring and autumn gardens is a great way to streamline your gardening tasks and add fresh herbs to your dinner table. These two herbs have similar growing needs, and they thrive in moist, rich soil, and full sun to light shade.
Lettuce is another cool-weather crop that’s typically grown in spring and autumn. Growing lettuce and cilantro together makes sense because these two plants have similar care requirements and don’t take up a lot of space in garden beds. Plus, cilantro attracts beneficial insects that naturally keep lettuce pests in check.
Parsley and cilantro are similar-looking plants with similar care requirements. Both cilantro and parsley grow best in cool weather, although parsley is more heat tolerant and less likely to bolt in summer. Keeping parsley and cilantro together in herb gardens or pots can simplify your gardening tasks and allow you to water these moisture-loving herbs at the same time.
Famed for its darling clusters of purple and white flowers, sweet alyssum is commonly grown in flower gardens. It makes a charming flowering groundcover and container plant as well. Aside from its ornamental appeal, sweet alyssum is one of the best companion plants you can grow for natural pest control. When sweet alyssum is planted near cilantro or other herbs and vegetables, its scented flowers attract beneficial insects and keep pests at bay.
Swiss chard and other leafy greens like kale and collard greens thrive in cool weather. Interplanting small cilantro plants between leafy greens is a smart way to put underutilized soil to use and fit more edibles in your garden beds. Cilantro keeps common pests like aphids and spider mites from feasting on your greens.
Many home growers sow cilantro seeds in their gardens in spring, but cilantro is quick to bolt as soon as temperatures rise in summer. Growing cilantro in the shade of taller plants, like tomatoes, keeps the cilantro plants cool and prolongs the harvest. In addition, if you grow cilantro with your tomato plants, you’ll have the freshest ingredients for homemade pico de gallo.
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