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What NOT To Plant Near Strawberries (And Some Things You Can)

Strawberries are a welcome addition to any garden and are a plant that fits well with many other plants as a companion. However, there are some things that should never be planted near strawberries for a variety of reasons.

Strawberry Plants

When I first introduced strawberries to my homestead many years ago I broke quite of a few of these rules because I didn’t know any better. That being said, my strawberries still grew well but to have the best chance for success your strawberries should be put together with the best partners.

Should You Grow Anything Around Strawberries?

Students of permaculture and organic gardening quickly learn the value of companion planting. By interplanting a variety of plants that are specially chosen, a gardener can accomplish many desired effects.

Companion plants can serve as a pest repellent to protect higher-value crops. Some plants function well as groundcover which helps with soil condition and water retention. Still, other plants can provide necessary nutrients and other types of support for fellow plants.

Another great reason to companion plant is for an increased yield in crops. By utilizing all the space you have by choosing plants that will help each other and can grow well alongside one another your garden becomes much more productive.

You certainly don’t have to plant anything with your strawberries but in true permaculture fashion, it will become a more useful space if you do.

Reasons You Should Avoid Growing Some Plants Around Strawberries

There are mainly 4 problems you are trying to avoid when choosing what to plant near your strawberries.

Shading

First, you need to be careful not to shade out your strawberry plants. Strawberries can tolerate a certain amount of shade but also love many hours of direct sunlight and most plants can grow taller than strawberry plants.

This becomes less about not planting near strawberries but instead where to plant around your strawberries. Be sure to not plant anything that will grow taller than your strawberries between the plants and the sunlight.

Nutrient Requirements

Second, you don’t want to plant anything that has different nutrient requirements than your strawberry plants. Strawberries generally prefer to be fed with organic material added to the soil and a generous amount of compost.

This being said, plants that require a lower or higher amount of nutrients may not do as well in your strawberry plants soil or compete with your strawberries and starve them. If you plant these near your strawberries you could harm your plants by catering to the needs of the companion plants instead of your strawberry plants.

pH Requirement Differences

Third, plants that have different soil pH requirements than strawberries are not good companion plants as they may not thrive is optimal soil for strawberries.

The ideal soil pH for strawberries is between 5.4 and 6.5 so also avoid plants that prefer a lower or higher pH if you want all your plants to thrive.

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Introduction of Possible Issues

Fourth, some plants can harbor and introduce things that can have a negative impact on your strawberries. Plants that can spread harmful fungi, disease or invite insect pressure should be avoided near strawberries

List of Plants That Should Be Avoided As Companion Plants For Blueberries

Poor Strawberry Companion PlantsReasons Why
TomatoesCan spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries. Can also harbor harmful nematodes and other pests that feed on strawberries.
PeppersCan spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries.
PotatoesCan spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries. Can also harbor harmful nematodes and other pests that feed on strawberries.
EggplantCan spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries. Can also harbor harmful nematodes and other pests that feed on strawberries.
Red CloverCan harbor harmful nematodes that feed on strawberries.
FennelPossibly inhibits the growth of strawberries.
MelonsHeavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth. Can also shade out strawberries.
OkraCan spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries.
BroccoliAttracts harmful pests. Heavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
CabbageAttracts harmful pests. Heavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
CauliflowerAttracts harmful pests. Heavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
RosesCan spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries.
MintCompetes for space and can crowd out strawberries. Can spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries.
Collard GreensHeavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
KaleHeavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
Brussel SproutsHeavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
KohlrabiAttracts harmful pests. Heavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
Bok ChoyAttracts harmful pests. Heavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
Collard GreensHeavy feeder which will compete for nutrients and hamper growth.
Stone Fruits (Plums, Peaches, etc.)Can spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries.
RaspberriesCan compete for space as it spreads and shade out strawberries. Can spread a fungi called verticillium to your strawberries.

A Few Plants That Help Strawberries And Thrive Near Them

Good Strawberry Companion PlantsReasons Why
ThymeDeters harmful pests that destroy strawberry crop.
MarigoldsDeters harmful pests that destroy strawberry crop. Attracts pollinators that can boost yield of strawberries.
BorageDeters harmful pests that destroy strawberry crop. Attracts pollinators that can boost yield of strawberries.
YarrowAttracts pollinators that can boost yield of strawberries.
OnionsDeters harmful pests that destroy strawberry crop.
BeansAdds nitrogen to soil which boosts feeds strawberry plants.

Conclusion

Companion planting can be a great way to increase the health and productivity of your garden but remember that knowing what NOT to companion plant is just as important as knowing what to plant.

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