QUESTION: I’m trying to plan my garden. What grows well with broccoli?
ANSWER: Broccoli enjoys the company of most vegetables as neighbors, though they don’t like being close to plants that are heavy calcium feeders, as they want all the calcium for themselves. There are mixed reviews over broccoli’s compatibility with cabbage. Both plants have similar nutrient and water needs, so planting them near each other can be an effective strategy, however, the same pests tend to feed on both cabbage and broccoli, so it’s best to keep them separated to prevent mass insect infestations. Potatoes don’t seem to work well when planted next to most vegetables, but next to broccoli, they do just fine.
As a general rule, it is recommended to mix broccoli in with plants that don’t need a lot of room and enjoy a little bit of shade in the late spring and early summer, such as lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, and radishes. Aside from those recommendations, the list of good neighbors for broccoli is rather long.
Plants that improve the flavor of broccoli when planted near to it are: celery, potatoes, and onions. Plants that produce an aroma that helps to repel pests that commonly feed on broccoli include: dill, rosemary, basil, garlic, and thyme. Plants that require little calcium also do well near broccoli, like beets, nasturtiums, and marigolds. Other plants that seem to enjoy the company of broccoli are: cucumber, lettuce, radishes, spinach, Swiss chard, and Shallots.
Plants that should never be grown near broccoli include: tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, mustard greens, pole beans, lima beans, snap beans, squash, and strawberries. Also, a few heavy feeders that should never be placed near broccoli include: asparagus, cantaloupe, sweet corn, pumpkin, and watermelon.