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Lettuce Companion Plants: Full List of Pairings
Along with being generally easy to grow and care for, lettuce has another benefit: it can be planted with just about anything! Some pairings offer extra help by providing shade, improving soil quality, repelling pests, and much more. Here’s a full list, along with three plants that shouldn’t be planted near lettuce for reference.
Full List of Lettuce Companion Plants
While many fruits, vegetables, and herbs can be grown with lettuce, a few make particularly good companions. Common reasons for planting lettuce and the following vegetables together are to provide shade for the lettuce, repel pests, and improve soil quality.
Fruits and Vegetables to Plant with Lettuce
• Asparagus – Because asparagus grows so large in the summer, it can be a great companion plant for lettuce. The tall, leafy “evergreen” plants will offer shade to the cool-weather-loving lettuce.
• Beans, Peas, and Other Legumes – Legumes fix nitrogen in the soil for lettuce, which can help it to grow.
• Beets, Carrots, and Parsnips – While lettuce takes up space above ground with only a small amount of root space, beets, carrots, and parsnips need root space with only some space above ground. This means they can be planted together without problems.
• Corn – Tall corn can keep your lettuce cool and shaded.
• Cucumbers – When grown on a trellis, cucumbers offer shade for lettuce.
• Eggplants and Tomatoes – These tall plants can offer shade to lettuce.
• Garlic, Onions, Shallots, and Other Alliums – All members of the allium family can deter many pests with their strong scents.
• Melons and Squashes – Melons and squashes (both summer and winter varieties) can make excellent companion plants for lettuce early in the year. Since the large plants take a while to grow, the lettuce can keep weeds down and make use of the extra space. Once the squash or melon increases in size, it will give shade.
• Radishes – Like other root vegetables, radishes take up space below ground rather than above, which makes them great for lettuce. They also attract aphids and act as an excellent trap crop when planted a slight distance away. Some suggest that planting lettuce nearby can also prevent radishes from getting tough as quickly.
• Spinach and Other Lettuce Varieties – Spinach and other varieties of lettuce (romaine, leaf, etc.) can be planted altogether, since they all have similar watering and soil needs.
• Strawberries – Lettuce can help with weed control and may hide ripening berries from larger pests. (Here are some other great strawberry companions.)
• Turnips – Turnips can repel pests like aphids, which harm lettuce.
Flowers to Plant Near Lettuce
• Calendula – Calendula can act as a slug trap crop, which may help keep the slugs (and their many germs) off your lettuce.
• Marigolds – Marigolds can repel pests from your lettuce.
• Nasturtiums – Nasturtiums can be an excellent aphid trap crop when planted nearby.
• Sunflowers – Tall sunflowers will offer shade to your lettuce.
Herbs to Plant Near Lettuce
The following herbs can keep away pests, improve soil quality, and offer ground cover.
• Summer Savory
What NOT to Plant Next to Lettuce
• Fennel – Like most fruits and vegetables, lettuce should not be planted with fennel. Fennel can harm lettuce growth.
• Foxglove – Foxglove can attract lettuce pests.
• Parsley – Planting parsley too close to lettuce may cause it to bolt sooner and can overcrowd it.
Possible Lettuce Companion Plants: Brassicas Family Members
While brassicas like broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cauliflower may harm the sprouting rate of your lettuce seeds, they can also benefit your lettuce by offering shade. It’s a mixed bag, so consider your options carefully before trying it for yourself!
Happy Lettuce Growing
You should now be able to try a variety of lettuce companion plants. Consider your garden needs and see what works best!