Growing our own vegetables is something positive that we can do to reduce our dependance on fossil fuels non renewable energies that are at fault for so much pollution and destruction in our world. Each time we buy our vegetables from the store we must be aware that there is 10 calories of fossil fuels invested in each calorie of food that we consume. Localizing our food production is one of the first steps we can take to becoming an ecological superhuman.
In this article I will give you a list of Florida summer veggies that you can grow and their companions that will assist to ward off pest, companion planting also provides beneficial relations between plants. It can be quite an adventure in Florida to grow veggies because it is hot and humid so you want to make sure to grow your vegetables according to a calendar of heat resistant veggies. As we enter into Autumn we can begin to plant vegetables that prefer cooler temperatures.
For the soil use an organic soil that you can purchase at a gardening store, add some coconut coir to retain moisture and always keep your soil covered with mulch. If you enjoy going to the beach take a bag with you and bring back some seaweed for the garden make sure to rinse it before laying it as mulch or adding it to the compost heap.
Make sure to have a compost so you can replenish the soil´s nutrition often. Very beneficial is to have a worm compost better known as vermiculture. Worm castings are some of the most balanced and nutrient rich fertilizer for veggies and garden plants. For directions on composting take a look at my article 11 steps to urban composting.
Tomatoes,plant with: Marigolds , basil, rosemary, onions, garlic
Eggplant, plant with: Beans, pumpkin, oregano
Bell Peppers, plant with : parsley , oregano, basil
Watermelon, plant with: Sunflowers, nasturtiums, nasturtiums, peas
Pumpkins, plant with : beans, oregano, corn. (Seminole Pumpkin) is a native pumpkin from Florida that I recommend.
Corn, plant with: Amaranth, beans, squash, morning glory, sunflowers,
Cucumbers, plant with: Corn, beans, peas, beets, carrots
Peas, plant with: Carrots, celery, cucumber, eggplants,
Onions, plant with: Carrot, leaks, beets, dill, lettuce
Okra, plant with: Plant head lettuce around okra for shade in the summer, peppers, eggplants, basil, cucumbers
Bush Beans: All legumes which beans are enrich the soil with nitrogen so you want to make sure to grow lots of them and then return the organic matter back into the soil by cutting excess foliage and ¨chop and drop¨ back to the ground especially around the roots, this will help to feed and enrich nutrition back into the system, plant with: Potatoes, broccoli, radish,strawberry, cucumbers
Beets: Are good for adding minerals back into the soil when the leaves are composted or you can eat the green leaves as a leafy veggie, plant with: beans, lettuce, onions, brassicas.
Kohlrabi, plant with: Mint , onion, sage, chives, thyme
Celery, plant with: Cabbage, beans, leek, onion, spinach, tomatoes
Turnips, plant with: Peas & cabbage do not plant with other root veggies
Carrots, plant with: Leaf lettuce, onions, tomatoes
Radishes, plant with: Beans, carrots, cucumber, lettuce, melons, nasturtium, beets, spinach, and other members of the squash family.
( End of September Towards Autumn )
Usually leafy greens and the following veggies grown in the summer or warm climates need a shady spot.
Head Lettuce, plant with: Beets, broccoli, carrots, radishes , strawberries
Kale, plant with: Beets,celery, herbs
Spinach, plant with: Cabbage, cauliflower, celery, eggplant, onions, peas, strawberries
Cabbage, plant with: Celery, dill, onions, potatoes, borage, mint
Broccoli, plant with: Basil, squash, tomatoes, strawberries
Collard Greens, plant with: Basil, beans, cucumber , dill, garlic, lettuce, marigolds, mint , nasturtiums, radishes, potatoes
To keep your garden healthy plant freely around your garden:
Comfrey: accumulates potassium ,calcium and phosphorus in the soil better known as a dynamic accumulator .
Velvet Beans: These fix amazing amounts of nitrogen into the soil.
Borrage: It is bee and wasp attracting plant which means they help to pollinate your garden and they add trace minerals into the soil as well as deter unwanted pest.
Marigolds:Keeps soil free of bad nematodes
HERBS OF ALL KINDS !!!! Mint, oregano, thyme, rosemary, basil, catnip, lemongrass, citronella and all that you can get your hands on !
Members of the Allium Family: Green onions, onions, shallots, chives, leeks, garlic. The strong smell from these alliums
help repel unwanted pest.
I hope this article helped to give you a good idea of what to plant with what in these hot summer months and into the Autumn !