Companion Plant Garden is an age old tradition and very popular. It involves planting two more plants in the same vicinity to derive some benefit from them. It is one of the very popular techniques of gardening.
In order to confuse or repel plant pests, companion plants are generally used. This gardening technique also helps in encouraging the growth of other plants and at the same time to act as a trap for pests and parasites. Harmful insects are drawn away from plants trying to be grown with the help of "trap" crops.
Also used as a “nurse crop”, companion plants provide food or possibly an attractive home or habitat for insects that are beneficial.
A strong odor is given out by the companion plants that confuse and deter pests. Their strong scent also masks or hides a crop from pests.
When early gardeners noticed that some plants seemed to grow best when planted next to certain other plants, it is believed that the concept of companion planting came into being. Although many experts still believes that the concept of companion plant garden is unproven, there is some science to back up this lore. It is entirely up to the gardeners to try this technique and see if it really works.
A raised bed of size 4 foot by 8 foot and a variety of combinations can be planted. Cucumber is usually used as green mulch reducing water loss and helpful in the protection of soil. In case space is too less, onions can be planted. Planting marigolds is very advantageous as it repels insect pests. An example of a combination of companion plant garden can be Onions, Parsley, Basil, Asparagus, Beans, Nasturtium, Marigold, Peas, cucumber and carrot.
Each bed must be planned in a systematic way as in a limited space, lots of plants needs to be grown. To maximize the output of the garden, care should also be taken regarding rotation of crops and successive planting. These steps will definitely give good results.