9 Popular Herbs to Pair with Vegetable Plants in the Spring Garden
Spring is the optimum time for companion planting of herbs and vegetables. Whether you have a small patio garden or a spacious backyard area, you’ll want to reap a bounty of flavourful and healthy herbs and vegetables for your dining enjoyment. As recorded in a popular gardening advice article, our local Perth area is designated as a Mediterranean regional zone that is ideal for the springtime planting of 9 popular herbs.
When you plant herbs close to companionable vegetables, you’re enhancing the health and yield of your plants while helping to control pests and aphids that feast on fresh plants. Companion herbs also attract helpful insects and birds that encourage pollination while they feast on harmful pests. Companion plants also enrich the soil nutrients and enhance the flavours of the vegetable plants. One major feature about pairing herbs and vegetables is that there is seldom a need to use artificial chemicals to restrain destructive invaders.
Herbs are the secret ingredients cooks of all culinary levels use to transform ordinary dishes into memorable dining experiences. Some herbs will please the connoisseur palate of every member of your family. Herbs enhance the taste of vegetables while adding nutritional values to supplement your daily dietary requirements. Growing your organic herbs is a great way to stretch your food budget while enriching the ecosystem in your garden. When properly paired, herbs and vegetable plants fill your gardening space with aromatic delights.
Here are 9 popular herbs to pair with vegetable plants in your spring garden.
Best paired with tomatoes and silver beets to enhance the taste of both plants. Basil helps to repel tomato hornworms, aphids, beetles, mosquitoes, whiteflies, and black flies. Basil is best planted in warm soil temperatures between 17.7 and 35 degrees and the herb is ready to pick within 2 to 3 months. Basil is a favourite herb used in both Italian and Southeast Asian cuisines.
Best paired with zucchini, tomatoes, and carrots. Chive plants enrich the aroma and flavour of carrots. Chive helps to repel aphids, whiteflies, and carrot flies. This herb takes root when planted in cool to warm soil temperatures between 10 and 30 degrees and will be ready to pick in 2 to 3 months. Chives provide an onion-like aroma and flavour when added raw to salads or as a culinary additive to cooked dishes.
3. Coriander (Also Known as Cilantro and Chinese Parsley)
Coriander is best paired with tomatoes, carrots, and lettuce. This herb repels destructive pests and attracts beneficial insects. The herb grows best when planted in a sunny location during cool soil temperatures between 10 and 25 degrees. This herb needs to be well watered and sheltered from extreme heat. It is ready to pick within 30 to 45 days. Coriander leaves add a delectable flavour to both fresh salads as an enhancement to cooked dishes.
This herb is best paired with tomatoes, broccoli, cucumber, corn, celery, zucchini, and cabbage. Dill plants attract beneficial wasps, caterpillars, and honeybees. Plant your dill during the early spring soil temperatures between 10 and 20 degrees and it will be ready to pick within 2 to 3 months. Dill is a versatile culinary seasoning used in bread, salads, soups, fish and meat dishes, dips, various kinds of vinegar, oils, and cheeses.
Mint plants are best paired with lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, and peas. It is best to plant mint in the ground in their pots as the roots spread out quickly and will overtake the growth of nearby plants. Mint plants repel carrot flies, field mice, aphids, and spider mites. The best time to plant mint is when the soil temperature is between 21.1 and 23.9 degrees in partially shaded areas. The mint leaves will be ready to pick within 2 to 3 months. Use freshly chopped mint leaves in salads or mix with sugar and vinegar to create a savoury sauce for lamb chops.
Oregano is an ideal herb that pairs well with all vegetables. Greek Oregano and Common Oregano are the two popular types of this herb. The traditional flavour is associated with the Greek Oregano while the Common Oregano has a sweeter taste. Oregano plants repel cucumber beetles and general garden pests. With the sandy soil in the Perth area, oregano can increase humidity by sharing its moisture with nearby plants and it serves as an active mulching agent. The best time to plant oregano is when the cool soil temperature is between 17.7 and 25 degrees. It is ready to be picked when the plant produces flowers within 6 to 8 weeks. Oregano is a popular herb used in a variety of Italian and Greek sauces, main dishes, and soups.
Parsley is best paired with asparagus, carrots, and tomatoes. The herb plants repel asparagus beetles and tomato aphids. Parsley has beneficially high amounts of beta carotene and vitamin B12 and helps attract pollinators. Parsley is best planted when the soil temperature is between 10 and 30 degrees. The outer stalks of the plants will be ready to pick within 2 to 5 months. Parsley leaves are mostly used to add colour and a mild flavouring in cooked dishes and white sauces.
This herb is best paired with broccoli, carrots, peas, lettuce, strawberries, and tomatoes. This herb repels ants, slugs, hornworms, whiteflies, and carrot flies while enriching the flavour of its paired vegetable plants. Sage plants grow best in full sunlight and when attached to stakes that protect them from potential strong winds. Do not overwater this herb as it enjoys partially dry soil. Sage is best planted when soil temperatures are between 10 and 25 degrees. When grown from a cutting, the herb is ready to be picked after 3 months. When grown from seeds, sage often takes 18 months to mature. Sage is a popular seasoning used to flavour meat dishes and as a culinary treat in poultry stuffing.
Thyme is best paired with tomatoes, strawberries, lettuce, celery, and sweet corn. The herb plant repels beetles, hornworms, corn ear-worms, and aphids while it attracts pollinating honeybees. Thyme is a slow-growing plant that matures in 10 to 12 months with the most productive flavour occurring during the summer months. Thyme is best planted when soil temperatures are between 15 and 25 degrees. This herb is a popular seasoning in cooked dishes. Use a light hand when seasoning with thyme due to its strong flavour.
Bibra Lake Soils has all of the eco-friendly soil preparations and nutritional additives required for the successful planting of all your herbs and companion vegetables. If you are not sure which soil conditioners, organic fertilizers, or nutrient enhancing products to use for your gardening projects, you can call us at (08) 9434 2290 to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members. We are open Monday through Saturday for all of your gardening soils and nutrient needs.