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Onion Companion Plants – What to Plant Next to Onions

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So many times, I go to make meatloaf and then realize I don’t have any onions in the house. Is it just me?! I’m determined to try growing them along with helpful onion companion plants so I’ll have onions on hand more often.

I have to admit, onions aren’t my favorite vegetable. However, I absolutely adore garlic!

It’s kind of funny actually, but I’m trying to get better. My whole family LOVES onions except me. And I never cook with them, except in meatloaf. I’ll try harder, I think.

Onions in the Garden - Onion Companion Plants
Onions in the Garden – Finding Great Onion Companion Plants – These are growing across the street in my BFF’s yard!

Anyway, I guess part of trying harder includes actually growing them, so here I go looking for onion companion plants.

I figured I would share the wealth and we can embark upon growing them together!

What can you plant next to onions?

You can plant onions next to certain fruits and vegetables, herbs, and even a few kinds of flowers. If you plant something invasive like mint next to onions, be sure to keep it in a pot!

What are the best companion plants for onions?

Onions grow well next to brassicas, carrots, beets, lettuce, melons, peppers, tomatoes, strawberries, Swiss chard, and a few herbs. Find little nooks in your garden where you can plant onions nearby these crops.

What are the worst onion companion plants?

Don’t plant onions next to any kinds of beans, peas, or legumes, as the onions might stunt their growth. The bacteria found on roots of beans and other legume crops suffers or totally dies with onions growing nearby. Onions and asparagus compete for nutrients, making them poor companions. Also avoid planting onions near sage due to different growing conditions, and also parsley as its growth may be poorer.

Do not plant others in the allium family nearby either, as they’re often all susceptible to the same pests.

Benefits of Companion Planting with Onions

Consider these benefits of onions as companion crops:

  • Strong aromas from onions may help to deter garden pests. The odor can mask and hide other crops or may simply turn away pests.
  • Onions take up a small footprint, making them good for filling in small spaces.
  • Onions grow well near lots of plants in the garden, making it easy to find a space.

Companion Plants for Onions

Choosing what to plant next to onions may come down to your family’s favorite vegetables. Consider what you’ll eat the most of, and see if any of those are good onions companion plants.

Fruit & Vegetable Companions for Onions

Starting with fruits and vegetables can be a great way to find some good onions companion plants for your garden.

Consider choosing some of these suitable planting companions for your onion patch.

Beets

Beet pests like aphids, rabbits, and deer may not appreciate the smell of onions growing nearby. Consider this a good companion planting strategy.

Brassicas

Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, and turnips are believed to benefit from companion planting with onions. The pungent odor onions emit may help to repel common pests of brassicas, such as the cabbage worm.

Carrots

Onions allegedly deter the carrot fly, making onions and carrots great planting companions. Both also seem to keep to their own footprint, making them friendly neighbors that won’t compete for space.

Lettuce

Growing lettuce and onions together will make good use of your gardening space.

Onions grow deeper while lettuce’s roots remain shallow near the soil surface. Both crops can thrive when growing nearby each other.

Companion Planting Onions with Lettuce and Peppers
Companion Planting Onions with Lettuce and Peppers in my friend’s garden

Melons

Onions are believed to help ward off aphids and other pests that plague melons, such as cucumber beetles. Melons are generally pretty easy-going companion plants in the garden, so this pairing really works.

Peppers

Again, onions may help to deter common pest insects like beetles and aphids. Therefore, peppers and onions companion planted together may be a great match in your garden.

Strawberries

The strong scent of onions can be an inhospitable deterrent to garden pests looking to steal your strawberry crop.

Strawberries and onions also appreciate similar growing conditions with well-draining soil and full sun.

Swiss Chard

Both onions and Swiss chard tend to grow in one spot for quite a long time, making them good bedfellows.

Tomatoes

Planting onions and tomatoes together creates a good companionship. Onions have a strong odor that many believe helps to deter garden pests.

The onions are said to release chemicals that fend off aphids.

Basket of onions
You can find many different companion planting partners for onions!

Companion Herbs for Onions

Herbs can also be a good choice for what to plant near onions. Both generally take up a small space and often grow nicely together.

Chamomile

Try growing chamomile near onions to attract beneficial bugs that can fight back on onion pests.

Chamomile grown nearby onions may also offer anti-fungal benefits, helping to minimize fungal issues that onions might otherwise face.

Dill

Since aphids bother dill, onions can be a good companion plant to offer some pest control properties.

Mint

Mint’s strong aroma may confuse and deter onion flies from attacking the onions.

Be sure to keep any mint planted near onions in containers as it can be very invasive.

Summer Savory

Said to improve the flavor and sweetness of onions, a crop of summer savory could be a good companion plant for onions.

It’s also believed that summer savory can enhance growth of onion crops and may also bring beneficials to the garden.

Flowers Companion Planting with Onions

Growing flowers near onions creates a pretty pop of color and other possible benefits in the garden.

Consider companion planting flowers with onions for a smart use of space.

Marigolds

As you might know, marigolds tend to grow nicely amid lots of plants in the garden. They’re touted as having pest control properties and other benefits to help plants.

Friendly to most plants, marigolds are good companions for onions.

Roses

Like garlic, onions also do well when planted near roses and vice versa. Onions are believed to improve the fragrance of roses.

Onion Sets Growing in the garden - Finding Onions Companion Plants
White onions growing in the garden at my friend’s house – Finding Onions Companion Plants

What to Plant Next to Onions

Choosing what to plant near onions may go differently from one gardener to the next.

My dear friend planted onions near peppers and lettuce in a beautiful stainless raised garden bed.

I plan to plant some onions near my tomatoes and a few in my strawberry bed.

Your companion planting strategy for onions can be a trial-and-error process as well. Try a few different plant pairings and see which ones you like best!

By the way, since they both hail from the Allium family, you might also be interested in checking out garlic companion plants!

Do you have any favorite onion companion plants or any questions about this topic? Feel free to chat in the comments – we always love hearing from you!

Happy Gardening!

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