Lettuce Companion Plants: 12 Best Companion Plants For Lettuce

Lettuce Companion Plants

What plants grow well with lettuce? Lettuce is one of the quick to plant and easy to harvest crops in the garden. Lettuce is a popular plant in many vegetable gardens and just like every other plant, it likes a good companion.

Gardeners use companion planting to repel insect pests, encourage faster and better taste, provide shade to necessary plants, and improve soil nutrients.

Lettuce happens to be a great companion to many vegetables but you definitely need a companion planting guide to enable you to choose the right plant to grow your lettuce.

If you are planning on planting some lettuce, companion planting is needed to help you maximize the efficiency and health of your garden. This article contains some of the best plants from herbs to vegetables to grow near your lettuce.

12 Best Companion Plants For Lettuce

Lettuce is said to be a good neighbor to some plants more than others. But it is still the most widely planted salad green and it’s also very easy to care for. While there are is no science behind companion planting, farmers and gardeners have used it for years to deter pests, attract beneficial insects and stimulate growth in plants.

1. Beets

Lettuce is a great companion with beets due to its short roots. Lettuce grow their crop above the soil while beets utilize underground space to grow their crops hence they don’t compete with each other and they are planted together to maximize garden space. Most members of the cabbage family make a great companion with beet.

2. Carrots

Carrot Companion Plants
Image: Envato Elements

Carrot is a root crop that grows particularly deep into the soil while lettuce does not and planting them together helps maximize the garden space. Both are companion plants that are beneficial to each other.

Lettuce plants also mature faster than carrots which allow you to harvest on a daily basis. You should plant different varieties of lettuce to give their foliage an aesthetic appeal.

3. Asparagus

You can have your lettuce planted in between the asparagus row in spring. To get the best of asparagus as a companion plant to lettuce, you should leave a little of the crop to continue growing in your garden and this will grow to taller fronds that act as a natural shade for lettuce plants when the afternoon sun becomes too hot.

4. Eggplant

Picking up eggplants
Image: Envato Elements

Eggplants make great companion plants to lettuce. Eggplant is a summer plant and it thrives in weather conditions that are too hot for lettuce so you can have it planted beside lettuce to take over the place aftyer5 your lettuce harvest.

5. Onions And Shallots

Onions and shallots are great companion plants with lettuce. Onions and shallots or other allium families can help deter insect pests with their aromatic scent. Onions and shallots are root crops that make use of the underground space hence they are not in competition with your lettuce rather help maximize garden space.

6. Dill

The dill plant is a good companion for lettuce and other cabbage plants. However, gardeners recommend planting beans with the two plants can be beneficial to the three. Beans fertilize the soil, dill protects, and lettuce mulches.

7. Calendula

Calendula is a companion plant lettuce that can help attract insects like slugs away from the lettuce. Slugs are considered harmful to lettuce and having calendula in close proximity can help get rid of them. Gardeners have calendula planted away from your lettuce to draw away the slugs.

8. Strawberries

Strawberries in white basket. Fresh strawberries. Beautiful strawberries.
Image: Envato elements

Interplanting strawberries and lettuce together can be beneficial to crops around it. Gardeners plant spinach in-between strawberries and lettuce as well as these three work well together as companions.

Lettuce and strawberries are both beneficial to each other. Strawberries provide living mulch and ground cover while mature lettuce acts as a protective shield.

9. Radish

Lettuce and radish make good companions. Radishes are fast-growing crops unlike slow-growing lettuce so radishes can help you mark where your lettuce can be planted. Lettuce can also help improve the flavor of radishes while keeping them softer as well.

10. Parsnips

Parsnips are common plants gardeners like to pair together. Parsnips are root crops while lettuce has shallow roots and grows above the soil. Planting these two crops together can help maximize the space in a garden.

11. Nasturtiums

Nasturtiums are attractive flowers that do well when planted a short distance away from the lettuce. These flowers attract aphids hence gardeners have them planted a few distances away from vegetables to draw aphids away from feeding on the crops.

12. Cucumbers

Cucumber Companion Plants: What Can I Plant Next to Cucumbers?
Image: Envato Elements

Cucumber is a warm-weather crop while lettuce is a cool-weather crop but they do well planted together as their growing requirement differs. These plants need to be properly configured to thrive next to each other, cucumbers can help provide shade for lettuce during the dog days summer.

What Not To Plant With Lettuce

Many crops are great companions to lettuce and there are few that don’t do well with lettuce. So, if you are planting lettuce this season, here are crops you should avoid growing near it.

1. Cabbage

Most crops in the cabbage family don’t do well with lettuce. Planting lettuce near cabbage can stunt the growth and quality of lettuce. Try to avoid planting lettuce near cabbage family plants like cauliflower, kale, Brussel sprouts, broccoli, and kohlrabi. These particular plants can prevent your lettuce from germinating.

2. Fennel

This is a plant you will find on the list of the worst plants to grow near almost all kinds of vegetable garden crops. While it is known to attract beneficial insects, it can serve as an inhibitor to the growth of lettuce.

3. Foxglove

You should also keep foxglove far away from the lettuce plant. The aphids that are attracted to foxgloves can attack your lettuce as well.

Lettuce Companion Plants

FAQs

How do I control aphids on my lettuce?

To control aphids on lettuce, gardeners often spray cold water on the leaves as this often dislodge them, companion planting with plants that repel them. For a large aphid invasion, dust plants with flour, neem oil, or insecticidal soaps.

Can you eat lettuce with bug holes?

Insect damages such as bug holes won’t render your lettuce inedible and if this should happen, you just have to cut the damaged part away and thoroughly inspect it before consuming it.

Does lettuce need full sun?

Lettuce does need full sun to thrive but it also tolerates some shades. In fact, lettuce is believed to last longer if shaded from the harsh afternoon sun.

Can you plant lettuce in the same place every year?

No, the same vegetables shouldn’t be planted in the same place every year. You need to adopt a crop rotation plan to lessen the need for pest control.

How much space does lettuce need?

Lettuce rows need space of 12 to 18 inches and thin leaf lettuce should be about 4 inches apart. Most lettuce plants require to be planted 6 inches from each other though.

What do you plant after Lettuce bolts?

Most gardeners plant beans after lettuce bolt as they germinate fast in warm soil. Other vegetables you can plant after lettuce include carrots, cucumbers, and squash.

What is eating my lettuce in the garden?

There are many soil infecting insects that can be eating your lettuce in the garden but the common ones for lettuce are beetles. The larvae hatch of beetles often feeds on lettuce roots. Slugs and snails also feed on the young green lettuce as soon as they are planted.

Final Thoughts

Before companion planting with any plant, you need a companion planting guide to enable you choose the right partner for it. Planting different crops together by gardeners is done for various reasons but the common reason is to make the plants more productive.

When choosing companion plants for lettuce, you need to watch out for plants that don’t go well with.

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