The 17 Best Carrot Companion Plants

Colorful Rainbow carrot with their green leaves in a box on wooden background, top view
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Written by Taliana Potts

Published: August 4, 2023

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Carrots are resilient plants that can survive droughts and colder temperatures. While the carrot is a tough and somewhat easy crop to grow, many pests love to feed on it. Companion planting can be a natural way to aid in the growth of your carrots and to keep harmful insects away.

Companion plants are two or more plants that grow together for mutual benefits. These plants will benefit one another by providing pest control, nutrient supply, pollination, and improved soil conditions. Carrots do not take up a whole lot of space, so they are perfect for companion planting and utilizing all of the space in your garden.

Do Carrots Need Companion Plants to Grow?

orange carrots on a wooden table

Carrots are a cool-weather crop best grown in the fall or spring.

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You can grow carrots without any other plants nearby, but the various benefits provided by companion plants should not be ignored. These benefits can aid in healthier carrot growth and a higher yield.

The right companion plants will provide shade, deter pests, attract pollinators, and loosen the soil. However, there are a few plants that can harm carrot growth. This list includes the best carrot companion plants and the plants you should avoid planting near carrots.

Good Companion Plants for Carrots

1. Amaranth

Purple Edible Amaranth leaves

Both the leaves and the seeds of amaranth are edible and nutritious.

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Amaranth is a great companion plant for so many vegetables. It is especially helpful for the growth of carrots because it loosens the soil and provides shade for the roots.

2. Basil

Basil can aid in carrot growth by deterring pests and attracting pollinators. It naturally repels pests without harming the insects that are good for your garden. In addition, bees and other pollinators are drawn to the herb.

3. Brown Mustard

The pests that feed on carrots, such as the larvae of click beetles, will stay away from the crop if brown mustard is planted nearby. Brown mustard acts as a natural bio-fumigant that helps control and kill threatening insects present in the soil. If you are not a fan of mustard, buckwheat will provide the same benefits.

4. Chives

Like many Allium family plants, chives deter carrot flies and other harmful insects. The strong onion-like scent is known to repel unwanted insects in your garden.

5. Cucumbers

growing cucumbers in the garden

There are several vitamins and minerals packed in cucumbers, including B6, Vitamin C, and potassium.

©Andrey Shtanko/Shutterstock.com

Cucumbers are more of a neutral companion plant for carrots. They do not compete for space and are a great way to utilize small gardening areas, but they do not provide any major benefits for carrot growth. Carrots and cucumbers do well when planted together simply because they do not cause any harm to each other.

6. Flax

Flax produces an oil that will keep garden pests away from the area it is planted in. Carrots attract many insects during their growth, so it is important to have plants that act as pest deterrents.

7. Garlic

Garlic and carrots help each other out by acting as a repellent for one another. Carrots ward off garlic-eating insects, and garlic keeps carrot flies out of the garden.

8. Lavender

lavender field in full bloom at sunset

Lavender can reduce stress, induce sleep, and soothe burns.

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Not only does lavender attract good pollinators, such as butterflies and bees, but its scent also deters sap-sucking aphids. As a bonus, lavender smells delicious and has many medicinal uses.

9. Leeks

As another member of the Allium family, leeks are a wonderful carrot companion plant. The vegetable’s potent scent is known as a carrot fly repellent.

10. Legumes

White man is holding a handful of fresh picked green pea pods. Good green pea crop.

Peas are a great source of fiber, which helps with digestion.

©Andrii Spy_k/Shutterstock.com

If you want a soil-enriching companion for almost anything in your garden, legumes are the way to go. The good bacteria living in the root systems of legumes help turn nitrogen into a form that is usable for other plants. Nitrogen provides essential nutrients that aid in plant growth, including the growth of healthy carrots.

11. Lettuce

The large leaves of lettuce provide good ground cover and can keep the soil cool in temperature. Lettuce is also a low-maintenance plant.

12. Mint

Planting mint near your carrots is another way to keep carrot flies at bay. The scent of mint, especially peppermint and spearmint, drives many insects crazy.

13. Onions

Onions love the sun and should be planted in a location with full sunlight.

©New Africa/Shutterstock.com

Homegrown onions are more nutrient-dense and more flavorful than store-bought ones. In addition to having tasty onions for all your meals, the carrots in your garden will benefit. Just like the other Allium family plants mentioned in this list, onions will ward off carrot flies.

14. Radishes

Radishes are an edible root plant

The word “radish” comes from the Latin word “radix,” which means “root.”

©iStock.com/Nastco

Carrots and radishes grow well together because they are both cool-weather root plants. Radishes grow faster than carrots, so when they are harvested the soil is loosened, allowing the carrot roots to grow deep into the ground.

15. Sage

Multiple benefits come from planting sage next to your carrots. Not only will sage deter pests but the flavor of your carrots will also be enhanced. Lastly, sage has shallow roots that will not interfere with the growth of your carrots.

16. Spinach

Spinach and carrots grow well together because the shallow roots of the spinach will not compete for nutrients with the deep roots of the carrots.

17. Tomatoes

Tomatoes and carrots are a classic pairing in the garden. Carrots benefit from the shade tomatoes provide, and tomatoes benefit from the aerated soil after carrots have been harvested. Additionally, many people claim that both carrots and tomatoes taste better when they are planted together.

Although they are companion plants, putting some space between them is recommended for both crops to absorb adequate nutrients.

Plants You Should Avoid Growing With Carrots

1. Asparagus

asparagus vs broccoli

It takes about 2-3 years for an asparagus plant to produce a harvest. After they are established, they will grow every year for up to 20 years.

©DUSAN ZIDAR/Shutterstock.com

Both asparagus and carrots are deep root plants that should not be planted together. The root systems from one of the plants can stunt the growth of the other.

2. Parsnips

Parsnips attract many of the same insects and diseases as carrots, so these two plants do not do well together.

3. Potatoes

Planting potatoes near carrots is not a good idea because the crops will compete for nutrients and space. Be sure to grow the versatile vegetable in a different part of your garden, so it will not overpower your carrots.

4. Sunflowers

Sunflowers stretch toward sunlight

Sunflower oil contains Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Iron, and Calcium.

©iStock.com/oleshkonti

The allelopathic substance in the roots of sunflowers can inhibit the growth of several plants, including carrots. However, sunflowers attract good pollinators, so they are a nice garden addition as long as they are placed at least 12 inches apart from other plants.

5. Umbellifarae Plants (Cilantro, Coriander, Cumin, Dill, Fennel)

Since carrots are also part of the Umbellifarae family, they can easily cross-pollinate with other plants in this family. Cross-pollination can result in stunted growth and change of taste.

Conclusion

Companion planting throughout your garden will maximize the health and yield of several crops. If you want your carrot plants to thrive, it is important to know which plants will aid in their growth and which plants can do them harm.

Overview of Carrot Companion Plants

Good Companion Plants for CarrotsBad Plants to Grow With Carrots
AmaranthAsparagus
BasilCilantro
Brown MustardCoriander
ChivesCumin
CucumbersDill
FlaxFennel
GarlicParsnips
LavenderPotatoes
LeeksSunflowers
Legumes
Lettuce
Mint
Onions
Radishes
Sage
Spinach
Tomatoes


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About the Author

Taliana is a content writer focused on outdoor adventures and wildlife. Living the van life for the last five years has allowed her to always be on the move in search of a new mountain to climb, a surf spot to explore, or a ski resort to ride. When she is not traveling, she works as a ski instructor in Lake Tahoe. Taliana graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno with a Bachelor's in Journalism.

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