Carrots are delicious vegetables that are easy to grow at home. Whether you’re growing in a small container garden or in a large in-ground bed, your carrots can benefit from other plants growing nearby.
While carrots don’t need companion plants to grow well, they may benefit from the right neighbors. So, in this article, I’ll share my top 20 favorite carrot companion plants for the garden.
Note: There are few plants that you shouldn’t grow with carrots. However, growing other umbellifers nearby like dill, cilantro, and parsley may cause issues with your carrots. You may also want to avoid planting parsnips next to your carrots, as they attract many of the same pests as carrots.
Zinnias are gorgeous summer flowers that can continue to bloom until the first frost. They come in a variety of colors and sizes. With these flowers near your carrots, you’ll have a better army of beneficial insects visiting your garden, protecting your plants from carrot flies.
Chives are part of the allium family, meaning they have a strong fragrance and beautiful spring flowers. These plants are perennial in many regions, producing reliable blooms to attract beneficial insects. The strong onion-like smell can also help deter or confuse carrot pests.
Cucumbers are climbing plants, making them a great companion on the North side of your carrots. Build a simple trellis to allow the cucumbers to grow vertically, and plant carrots on the South side so that the cucumbers don’t shade out the smaller carrot plants.
Beets are another root vegetable with a relatively small footprint. They are harvested more quickly than most carrots, but work well when interplanted. It’s nice to have a collection of root veggies all in one convenient spot in the garden.
While tomatoes are very different plants, they can work well alongside your carrots. Just be sure to provide support for the large tomato plants, and give them at least 2 feet of space from your carrot plants. Again, plant the carrots on the South side of the tomatoes to avoid shading.
Another allium family plant, garlic makes an excellent carrot companion plant. These plants take up minimal space and can be spaced quite close to your carrot plants. Garlic can help deter some pests with its strong aroma.
Basil is considered one of the kings of companion planting. Plant basil near pretty much anything and it will benefit your other plants! Not only does it have a strong scent, but it produces flowers that attract beneficial insects later in the summer.
Peas are another climbing plant that can easily be grown vertically. This means, while they are a large plant, it doesn’t need to take up much of your soil’s space. Grow peas up a trellis on the North side of your carrots to make sure both plants get enough light.
I love growing alyssum all around our vegetable garden, as it is a magnet for beneficial insects. One of the most prominent insects that it attracts are hoverflies, perfect for combating aphids, thrips, and mites that might otherwise harm your carrot plants. It also attracts parasitoid wasps, which can keep caterpillar populations under control.
If you’re looking for a gorgeous companion plant for your carrots, try one of the many varieties of nasturtium. Gorgeous lily pad leaves with bright colorful flowers look amazing in the garden. Be sure to grown clumping nasturtiums such as the Alaska varieties, and avoid the spreading types.
Lettuce makes a great companion for carrots as it has a relatively small root mass and requires a fairly small space. Lettuce also doesn’t grow very tall, so it is one of the few plants you can plant in front of your carrots and not risk shading the plants.
Onions are another great companion plant option from the allium family. These tall, slender plants are great for confusing scent-driven pests like the carrot rust fly.
Peppers also make a good companion for carrots. They need a long growing season and spend the entire summer in the garden. They are taller plants, between 3-4 feet on average, so they should be grown on the North side of your carrots to prevent shading.
Thyme is a wonderful perennial herb that is quite short. This makes it great for bordering your garden beds near your rows of carrots. Plant thyme along the South side of the carrots, as they will only grow to about 10-12 inches tall.
15. Dwarf Sunflowers
While you may think of a huge, towering plant when you think of sunflowers, they also come in compact sizes. Look for “dwarf” sunflowers to grow as carrot companion plants, as they will mature at between 2-3 feet tall. Sunflowers are great for attracting beneficial insects to your garden.
While candytuft is a perennial evergreen plant, it does produce gorgeous flowers that attract bees and other pollinators. If you want a more permanent companion for your carrots, try white candytuft!
17. Swiss Chard
Swiss chard is one of the best bangs for your buck to grow in the garden. If you want to grow healthy greens along with your carrots, grow some rainbow chard. I love the variety of color that comes with this healthy green, and it can be planted within 12 inches of your carrots.
18. Green Onions
Green onions are another allium that can be planted quite close to your carrots. I love scallions for their milder onion flavor and smaller footprint in the garden. Plant these all around your carrots to help deter carrot flies and ward off pests.
Tarragon is one of my favorite uncommon herbs to grow in the garden. The plants can become a bit unwieldy, but can easily be trimmed throughout the year to keep them maintained. The aroma of tarragon is amazing and works great when paired with sweet roasted carrots.
Finally, try growing cosmos alongside your carrots. These flowering plants draw in a wide variety of beneficial insects. They can grow quite tall depending on the variety, so be sure to plant cosmos on the North side of your carrots.
Carrots are one of my favorite plants to grow in raised beds. While the germination can be tricky, there are few plants more satisfying to harvest in the summer months! I hope this article helps you find the perfect assortment of companion plants for your carrots.