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Nine Best Companion Plants for Carrots



Ensure your carrots stay healthy and ward off pesky, plant-killing insects by adding companion plants to your garden! This practice involves growing plants that benefit each other by either repelling pests, providing nutrients to the soil, and even boosting each other’s flavor.

Learn about what your carrots need to thrive and discover the nine best companion plants to accompany them.

The Recipe for Happy Carrots
A dirty, half-buried carrot sticking out of the dirt in a garden

Carrots are a fall and spring crop that need six to 10 hours of direct sunlight. However, keep the roots cooler than 75 degrees Fahrenheit, so shaded ground in well-draining soil is optimal. Carrots also need 10 inches of unobstructed space to grow, so remove anything that will grow in the roots’ path. Give carrots 1 inch of water a week.

Use companion plants to aid these conditions, so carrots can grow bigger, healthier, and tastier!

1. Tomatoes
A couple of tomato plants being propped up by sticks in a garden.

Carrots have a very symbiotic relationship with tomatoes. The tomato does its part by sucking-up nutrients, like nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorous, in the soil near the carrots. Both plants need these nutrients, and this competition sends carrots growing deeper into the soil in search of said nutrients leaving you with a larger yield.

Tomato leaves also help the carrot by providing shaded ground to keep the roots cool. The carrot pays all this back by breaking up the soil, which gives the tomato’s roots more room to grow.

2. Rosemary
Patch of rosemary in a vegetable garden

Having a few aromatic rosemary sprigs near your carrots is an effective defense from harmful pests. Rosemary’s natural scent repels insects harmful to the carrot, like slugs, snails, and carrot rust flies.

3. Thyme
A thyme plant with flower heads.

Thyme is a bane to intrusive insects in your garden due to the two-part defense that its scent creates.

The first part of the defense is that it repels insects that eat carrot leaves, such as beetles. The other part is that thyme’s aroma attracts predatory insects, like wasps and lacewings, that kill pests like aphids.

4. Onions
Close-up shot of green onions lined up in a garden

Onions and carrots may both grow underground, but these cool-climate plants help each other out. The two don’t compete for nutrients since they have different root structures and nitrogen requirements.

An onion’s pungent aroma also repels harmful pests like the carrot rust fly. The onions love this relationship, too, since carrots repel flies are harmful to onions as well.

As long as you ensure the plants aren’t obstructing each other’s roots, and spaced properly, these two can be good friends.

5. Beans
Beans on a vine in a shaded garden.

Planting beans with carrots is a strategy often used — for a good reason!

Beans are great nitrogen sources for carrots and other vegetables like squash and corn. This benefit is thanks to bacteria that allow them to turn atmospheric nitrogen into a usable state for other plants.

In turn, carrots protect the beans by occupying underground space where harmful weeds would otherwise take root.

6. Radishes
A bunch of radishes being held with a garden glove after being harvested.

Radishes are great companion plants if you want big, healthy carrots. Radishes break up the underground soil, making it easier for the carrots to grow bigger, deeper, and faster.

Plant your radishes at the same time as your carrots, preferably in the fall. They’re so fast-growing that they will prepare the soil before the carrots are done growing.

Even better, radishes don’t compete with carrots for nutrients!

7. Marigolds and Nasturtiums
A large bush of marigolds.

Flowers like marigolds are great at repelling not only insects but other wildlife that eat carrot crops, like deer and rabbits. On top of this, they attract beneficial insects that pollinate plants and kill harmful pests.

Nasturtiums are another helpful flower but in a different way. They’re an attractive plant for pests, which makes them an excellent trap crop to divert the bugs from your carrots.

Together, this dynamic duo creates a strong line of defense against unwanted visitors.

8. Cilantro
A cilantro plant in a dirt patch.

Flavorful cilantro makes a great addition to a tasty herb garden. Planting cilantro next to your carrots is a good idea since they require similar growing conditions like cooler climates and watering schedules. The two plants also deter pests harmful to the other, such as spider mites, whiteflies, and aphids, making them a very convenient pairing.

A bonus? They’ll make an excellent pairing in your salsa as well!​​​​

9. Chives
Close-up of a blooming chives plant.

Chives have a lot to offer, both your carrots and your time! These plants repel mites, flies, and aphids. They also enrich your soil, leading to a bigger, tastier harvest.

However, the natural appeal comes from the perennial nature of chives, meaning you don’t need to replant them every year. “Easy-yet-effective” is the best way to describe companion planting with chives.
Choosing the Right Companion Plants for Carrots

Every companion plant offers something different, from repelling pests to enriching the soil. And remember — it’s all about the synergy of the plants. If they play nice and don’t step on each other’s toes, many plants will help your carrots grow larger and healthier.

Of course, be cautious and use a few test plants before trying new combinations. You can try your hand at reviving your plants if anything goes badly.

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