5 Companion Plants for Strawberries

Posted on 08/01/2022

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Whether you’re craving strawberry shortcake or a sweet topping for your ice cream, strawberry plants are a great addition to your garden. These pretty plants with their white flowers and dainty red fruit are easy to grow. Buy your Allstar Strawberry bush from Jackson & Perkins and increase your produce by pairing your strawberries with these companion plants.

What Are Companion Plants?

Companion plants act like good neighbors to nearby crops. These friendly plants can help deter pests, attract beneficial insects or support the growth of nearby plants. When you plan your garden using the principle of companion planting, you can increase your harvest yield while reducing the amount of maintenance your garden requires.

You may remember the most popular companion plant trio from elementary school. The Three Sisters – corn, beans and squash – were often planted together in Native American gardens. Corn stalks serve as a kind of trellis for beans to climb, while the beans provide essential nitrogen to the soil. The squash plants do their part by shading the ground and suppressing weed growth.

Strawberries, especially, can benefit from companion plants. Prone to pests and lacking the abundant nectar to attract essential pollinators, strawberry plants can frustrate gardeners with less-than-stellar crop yields. Strawberry plants are vulnerable to weevils, spittlebugs and slugs, among others. To avoid a harvest of diseased or misshapen strawberries, try including these companion plants in your garden.

yellow-orange-marigold-flowers

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Marigolds

Marigolds are a favorite of gardeners — and for good reason. The orange, billowy blooms make an excellent pest repellent.

Garlic and Onions

Plant garlic and onions to repel birds. Birds love strawberries almost as much as you do. Pungent plants, such as garlic and onions, will help mask the sweet scent of the strawberries.

Legumes

Strawberries require more nitrogen in the spring and again in fall. You can replenish nitrogen in your soil by planting legumes. Sweet peas are legumes that are easy to grow and popular in home gardens. 

Plants to Attract Pollinators

Strawberry flowers can technically self-pollinate. The flower’s female organs are located in the center of the bloom, with its male organs surrounding them. However, the pollination that occurs due to wind and rain can be uneven and result in small, misshapen fruit. For this reason, gardeners will harvest larger, sweeter strawberries with the help of pollinators, such as honeybees and butterflies.

Strawberry flowers don’t have an abundance of nectar to attract the pollinators themselves. Gardeners can overcome this hurdle with companion plants that attract pollinators.

Borage

Borage is one of the most popular companion plants for strawberries to attract pollinators. Also known as bee bread, borage’s nectar-rich flowers are a favorite of pollinators. And nearly the entire plant is edible, from its star-shaped flowers to its long stalk.

Lavender

Lavender is doubly effective as a companion plant for strawberries. In addition to attracting pollinators, the scent of the dainty purple flowers also repels rabbits and deer. 

Lavender is one of the most aromatic flowers you can plant in your garden. A traditional herb with many uses, lavender can be made into tea, sachets or even scented soap. 

strawberries in a basket

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Strawberries may just be the most delicious and prettiest plants in your garden. The keys to a great strawberry harvest are attracting pollinators and repelling the pests that commonly devour these tasty berries. Make smart use of companion plants to ensure you have plenty of strawberries for all of your favorite recipes. Check out all of our strawberry plants we have for sale at Jackson & Perkins.