How to Use Lettuce in Companion Planting
Growing lettuce in your home garden requires plenty of cool weather and moisture for the best results. If you decide to use lettuce starts, don’t plant them where they will receive full sun because they will wilt and fail to produce like they should. Lettuce is a shallow rooted vegetable that can grow in garden beds and boxes. It is also an excellent companion for many other garden vegetables. Companion planting is a good skill to know because companion vegetables and herbs help each other out. They deter pests, attract beneficial visitors and maintain their general health. By growing lettuce with carrots, strawberries, radishes, cucumbers and onions, you will get good results and aid in the maturation of all vegetables involved.
Lettuce and Onions
Each time you pull an onion out of the ground, plant a lettuce start. The deeper hole left by the onion is a perfect fit for the shallow roots of the lettuce, the compost that is left over will benefit the leafy green, and the onion’s smell will deter rabbits if they are a problem where you live. Onions and lettuce can also grow together simultaneously. But when you plant onions, do so in a scattered pattern so onion maggots cannot attack an entire row.
Lettuce and Carrots
Carrots grow particularly deep in the soil while lettuce does not. Planting the two together is beneficial for both as they have long been known to be good growing companions. Lettuce will mature much faster than carrots, so you can harvest a little each day after its leaves have grown big enough. Plant a row of lettuce between each row of carrots. Not only will the vegetables work well together, but their foliage will look nice while growing. Using different types of lettuce will add to the aesthetic effect.
Lettuce and Radishes
Radishes mature much faster than carrots and do not dig deep into the soil, but they go great with lettuce. Growing radishes with lettuce in the summer helps to make the red vegetable more tender. A bed containing radishes, different varieties of leaf lettuce and carrots would do well.
Lettuce and Cucumber
Cucumber can be planted alongside lettuce as well. Cucumber plants take up quite a bit of space, so be sure not to overshadow any lettuce starts. Radish planted with cucumber and allowed to go to seed repels the cucumber beetle. Since radish goes well with lettuce, it only makes sense that it will be a good companion for cucumber as well.
Lettuce and Strawberries
Another good companion for all types of leaf lettuce is strawberries. Growing strawberries is always fun for they are very resilient and will come back annually since their roots take hold. Lettuce is shallow and can be grown alongside strawberry plants. Onions can also be added to the bed for beneficial growing.
Lettuce is a versatile, shallow growing vegetable that has many good companions. Carrots, onions, radishes, cucumber and strawberries all grow well with lettuce. Both bush and pole beans do well with lettuce as well.