17 Companion Crops to Develop With Beets

Beets are fairly easy to grow and can thrive in many climates. While they’re typically a spring crop, you can also get a fall harvest when you plant them in late summer. Even though these crunchy root vegetables can take up a lot of room, you can still companion plant beets with many other plants to maximize your harvest.

Companion planting is an easy way to utilize every part of your available planting space. By picking and choosing plants that cooperate well with each other, you can pack them in tightly with few problems. Many plants will benefit each other by providing nutrients and deterring pests, giving you fewer tasks in the garden.

If you love beets and want to get more growing in the garden, you’ll want to check out these companion plants. There are so many delicious varieties you can add!

What Is Companion Planting?

Interplanting maximizes space and benefits plants.

Companion planting is growing compatible plants in the same space to benefit each other. A prime example is lettuce and tomatoes. Tomato plant limbs spread out and cast a lot of shade, taking up a lot of prime real estate in your garden—plant lettuce seeds underneath the tomatoes to put that space to use.

Lettuce can’t take the intense summer sun, but it does much better when grown in full shade if you’re trying to grow it during hot weather. So, while your tomato plants are soaking up those rays, the lettuce stays cool, and you’re getting extra food out of the deal. Lettuce roots are shallow and won’t inhibit tomato growth, but you can harvest and eat lettuce at any stage if it gets in the way.

Similarly, many symbiotic relationships involve beets, so you don’t have to limit yourself to a specific bed or single row. Interplanting is a great way to create biodiversity in the garden and attract more pollinators and beneficial insects.

Beets as Companion Plants

Beets have a lot to offer in the garden, though there are a few drawbacks to consider. Let’s take a look at how they behave in the garden so you can determine where to plant them.

Beets are great at is breaking up compact soil. The thick rounded roots will help loosen up the ground so more tender roots can grow there. They’re a good crop to plant first, but you can also reap these benefits when growing them next to other plants.

Beets develop big, leafy greens that are stunning and highly nutritious. The leaves contain magnesium which is responsible for plants growing big and strong. If a plant looks stunted, it could be lacking magnesium. Put your beets to work by letting old greens drop to the ground. You can also chop them up and mix them into the soil or add them to your compost bin.

Though beets make great neighbors for many plants, some combinations just won’t work out. Beets need moderate moisture, at least 1 inch each week. If you have drought-tolerant plants that prefer dryer soil, they won’t get along with beets.

Beets are inviting to a variety of pests that can chow down on the rest of your garden. Aphids, beetles, snails, leafminers, and thrips are just a few of the problems that are bound to show up. Planting beets with plants that also attract these pests could lead to a bigger problem than you anticipated.

Companion Plants for Beets

Now that you know what to expect in the garden, let’s discuss your options.


Close-up of a growing broccoli vegetable in a sunny garden. It is a cold season vegetable with a thick, edible stem that supports a cluster of dense, green flower buds. These flower buds form the edible Plan a garden for beetroots & broccoli with proper spacing.

You’ll need to plan your garden to accommodate large beetroots and broccoli leaves, but once the spacing is worked out, you’ll appreciate the effort. Calcium is an important nutrient for every plant, but beets and broccoli have different requirements. Broccoli will absorb every last bit of calcium, but that’s okay because beets don’t need that much.

Excessive calcium can lead to stunted plants and discolored leaves. If you have a calcium problem where you grow beets and broccoli together, that should fix the problem in no time!

Bush Beans

Close-up of a lush bean bush in a sunny garden. The plant has green wide leaves, smooth and slightly shiny, heart-shaped. The plant produces many thin edible pods containing bean seeds. These pods are long, thin, and green in color.Planting bush beans with beets saves fertilizer time.

Beans are an ideal companion plant for beets and many other crops. Planting bush beans and beets together can help you save time applying fertilizer. Beans add nitrogen to the soil through their roots; when those roots decay, they add nitrogen right back.

This means you’re preparing next season’s bed by growing beans! Beets don’t need a lot of nitrogen, so when they’re planted next to beans, you likely won’t need to give them more nitrogen unless your soil is completely depleted from the start.

It’s important to ensure you plant bush beans with root crops, not pole beans. Pole beans develop long vines that will wrap around whatever they can. They can stunt beet growth or cast too much shade on them.


Close-up of a large cabbage plant in the garden. The plant forms a dense round head composed of overlapping, thick and crisp leaves. The leaves are bluish green in color with a waxy texture on the surface.A cabbage plant controls beet’s calcium intake, while root crops improve the soil for better cabbage harvests.

Like broccoli, cabbage needs a lot of calcium and can help control how much your beets are getting—or aren’t getting, in this case!

But vibrant root crops are also helpful to cabbage in this arrangement. They can help break up the soil and make nutrients more accessible for the cabbage, resulting in better cabbage harvests and, eventually, better soil.

Cabbage and beets have similar growth requirements, making great companions when planted in the same bed. One inch of water per week and plenty of sunshine will give you happy crops.


Close-up of flowering Catnip plants in the garden. It is a perennial plant with square stems covered with fine hairs. The leaves are heart-shaped, soft to the touch, grey-green in color with serrated edges. Catnip flowers are small and tubular and pale lavender in color. They grow in groups at the top of the stems.This mint relative is drought-tolerant and has a scent that reportedly keeps mice away.

If you don’t mind the possibility of attracting cats, catnip is a good plant to grow by your beets. Ironically, the appeal of this companionship is to deter mice. Mice like to munch on beetroots fresh from the garden. You can’t blame them, but those are supposed to be for you! Luckily, they hate the smell of catnip and will keep their distance, so you’ll want to grow it close to your beets.

Catnip is drought-tolerant, so it won’t need as much water as beets do since they’re content to be watered when the soil is dry. Getting the two to be happy on the same water schedule can be tricky, so consider growing catnip in a container and placing it near your beets. You can also plant it on the edges of a raised bed where the soil tends to dry out faster.


Close-up of many growing corn in the garden. Corn is a tall, annual cereal plant with thick, strong stems. Corn leaves are long, narrow, arranged alternately along the stem. They are dark green in color and have prominent veins. Corn produces sweet cobs with bright yellow kernels that are wrapped in green leaves.Beets and corn complement each other because corn provides shade for a prolonged harvest.

Corn and beets make a great team, even though they’re grown in different seasons. Your first batch of beets will be halfway ready for harvesting by the time you plant corn. But, if you succession plant your beets, the corn will eventually be tall enough to provide some shade. Beets like the spring sun and don’t do well in hot summers, so the corn will help you prolong your beet season.

Both plants need at least 1 inch of water per week, though corn will likely need more. However, this won’t be too much of a problem as summer heats up, as the beets will be thirstier due to the rising temperatures.


Close-up of a growing Endive plant in a garden, on a raised bed. Cichorium endivia is a leaf vegetable with edible leaves. Endive forms a rosette of oblong, thin leaves that look deeply incised or frilly. The leaves are bright green in color and have a smooth texture.With similar water and sun needs, this delicious chicory complements beets as a good garden companion plant.

Endive is a crisp leafy green that can be cooked in hot dishes or served in a cold salad. Its versatility works well with beets, so you’ll likely want to eat them together. Conveniently, they make good companions in the garden!

Endive has a compact but bushy growth habit, usually spreading out no more than 6 inches. Since the leaf growth is above ground and beetroot growth is below ground, these two won’t inhibit each other too much, even if you pack them a little close together. Both plants appreciate plenty of water and lots of sunshine in the spring.


Close-up of a lot of garlic growing in a garden bed. This is a bulbous perennial plant. The plant forms a strong pale green stem with long, thin and flat leaves with a hollow tubular structure.As a natural pest control, garlic deters beet pests.

Garlic is nature’s pest control, which makes it a great companion. You can use to keep beet pests at bay. Beets are commonly harassed by aphids, armyworms, cutworms, and mice, who don’t like the smell of garlic.

Since you grow garlic and beets for what they produce underground, you’ll need to ensure everything has enough room to grow. You can alternate rows of beets and garlic or space them out in offset rows.

Some say that garlic will improve the flavor and growth of beets, so that may be another reason you want to put this pair in your garden.


Top view, close-up of a garden bed with growing kales. Kale is a leafy green plant belonging to the Brassica oleracea species. It has strong, upright stems that support a rosette of curly, ruffled, oval and oblong leaves. The leaves are dark green with strongly curly edges.Grow kale and beets together as they have the same needs and growth period.

If you love kale and beet salad, you’ll want to grow them together. They both have the same water and sun requirements and prefer cooler parts of the year. Beet and kale roots won’t inhibit each other’s growth and can help each other by preventing weeds from popping up.

Try to keep enough space between the plants to prevent pests from easily crawling from plant to plant. Aphids and thrips love both plants, so things can easily get out of control if you ignore pest management.


Close-up of a Kohlrabi growing in rows in a vegetable garden. It is a biennial plant with an edible bulbous stem. The leaves are large, wide, flat, blue-green in color with pale green veins. The stem grows above the ground and is round, spherical, reminiscent of a turnip or radish. It is pale green in color.This unique brassica cares for soil calcium, but watch size and pests when planting with beets.

Kohlrabi is another member of the Brassica family that will take care of soil calcium. Some varieties can grow quite large and reach up to 18 inches tall and wide, so pay attention to the size of your kohlrabi and beets before planting.

This is another pair of plants that are agreeable when it comes to water and sunlight, but they do share a lot of the same pests, including aphids, armyworms, cutworms, flea beetles, and thrips.


Top view, close-up of growing lettuce plants in the garden. Lettuce, scientifically known as Lactuca sativa, is a leafy annual plant belonging to the Asteraceae family. Lettuce forms a rosette of wide, smooth and slightly ruffled green leaves. The leaves are rounded, with a glossy and waxy texture.Plant lettuce in open spaces with beets to suppress weeds while getting a second crop in.

Lettuce is so easy to pop into open spaces in your garden. If your beet bed looks a little bare, sprinkle some lettuce seeds. The shallow roots won’t get in the way, and tender lettuce will appreciate shade provided by large beet leaves. If you plant lettuce and beets simultaneously, the fast-growing lettuces will suppress weeds.

Lettuce is agreeable with a lot of different plants. If summer approaches and you’re not done with beets and lettuce, plant the two with corn to provide them some extra shade as the days grow hotter to extend your harvest.


Close-up of blooming marigolds in the garden. Marigolds are a bright and fragrant annual plant. Marigolds have erect stems covered with feathery dark green leaves. The leaves are thinly divided into smaller leaflets. The flowers have a dense pom-pom-like appearance with multiple layers of petals. The petals are small, rounded, wavy, red with a yellow border.Plant marigolds with beets to reduce root-knot nematode issues.

Beets are susceptible to root-knot nematodes, so you’ll want to plant marigolds to suppress their infestation. Marigolds produce compounds that are toxic to nematodes, so when they feast on marigold roots, they’re unable to mature and eventually die.

Marigolds don’t have deep roots and are compact. As with most plants, they’ll be smaller if grown right next to something and larger if given plenty of space and aren’t competing for nutrients. I like to push the limits in my garden and have allowed marigolds to grow too close for comfort next to other plants, which resulted in very small plants that still produced gorgeous blooms.


Top view, close-up of growing mint in the garden. Mint is a perennial herb. Mint plants have square stems covered with fine hairs. Mint leaves are opposite, meaning they grow in pairs on opposite sides of the stem. They are small, ovoid or spear-shaped, with serrated edges. The leaves are dark green in color.Plant mint in a container to avoid overpowering neighbors and use it near beets to deter pests with its scent.

If I ever suggest mint as a companion, I don’t mean to put it in the ground. Mint has a stunningly vigorous growth habit, and while that may be a good thing for someone who loves it, it can easily stunt its neighbors. Keep mint in a container to make caring for it easier, or commit to rigorous pruning almost daily. (I could still smell mint in my garden the summer after I thought I successfully removed it!)

Why take your chances with mint? Because a lot of pests don’t like it. Keep containers of mint near your beets to ward off different types of aphids, caterpillars, flies, and worms.

You can also grow mint elsewhere in your garden, harvest it, and chop it up to sprinkle around your beets. The scent reportedly drives critters away, so you don’t need a living plant to do it.


Close-up of mature onion plants in a sunny garden bed. The onion plant consists of a short underground rounded bulb. Elongated, thin and hollow leaves emerge from the bulb, forming a dense group of green cylindrical stems.Use onions to repel beet pests like cutworms, borers, aphids, and flea beetles.

Like garlic, onions are a great way to repel beet pests. Onions will keep away various species of cutworms and borers that will eat away at your beetroots, as well as aphids and flea beetles that go after greens.

Alternating rows of beets and onions is a good way to make sure everything has enough room, but you can be a little more abstract with your planting if you’d like. As long as you ensure the roots have enough room, the greens of each plant shouldn’t have any problems sharing space.


Close-up of ripening radishes in a garden bed. The radish forms an underground, edible, oval-shaped root with a bright pink skin. A rosette of green leaves emerges from the root. The leaves are elongated and lobed, bright green in color with a rough texture.Grow radishes alongside beets to loosen up compacted soil. Harvest radishes early as trap crops for aphids to protect beets.

Radishes are an easy crop to grow and are a great way to loosen up the soil for young beet seedlings. Plant radish and beet seeds at the same time. Radishes will be ready to harvest much sooner than beets (depending on the variety), so you can pluck them right as they start getting in the way of growing beetroots.

Aphids like both plants, and you can use radishes as a trap crop. Let the aphids enjoy your radish leaves, and when you harvest them, take the aphids with you and get rid of them. Succession planting radishes will help you have fewer of them on your beets.


Close-up of a sage plant in the garden. It is a perennial herbaceous plant with woody stems with greyish-green, square-shaped leaves covered with fine hairs, giving them a soft, velvety texture. The leaves are oblong and lanceolate.Plant sage near beets to repel rabbits, but grow it in a container or raised beds for easier care and faster drying.

You’ll want to plant sage if rabbits are a problem for your beets. Sage is a good companion for many plants because they’re pest resistant and won’t attract anything specific. Rabbits don’t like the sage scent, so keep it nearby to keep them away from your beets. Try a critter cage to protect your valuable root crops from rodents.

Sage is drought-tolerant and only needs to be watered when the top few inches of soil are dry, so it can be a little difficult to care for when they’re in the ground with beets. Try planting them in a container or on the ends of rows in raised beds, so they’ll dry out faster.


Close-up of a growing spinach on a garden bed. Spinach is a leafy green vegetable with a rosette growth habit, with a central cluster of leaves radiating from a short stem. Spinach leaves are large, smooth, glossy, dark green. The shape of the leaves is oval.This green acts as living mulch for beets by suppressing weeds and retaining moisture.

Spinach acts as a living mulch when you plant it next to beets. The shallow roots will allow you to plant them close to beets to help suppress weeds and retain soil moisture. Water-loving beets will appreciate the extra moisture.

Spinach won’t compete for nutrients and thrives around the same time as beets. Once your beets are ready to harvest in early summer or late fall, the spinach will be ready, too. Both plants will benefit from a third companion that will cast shade to help keep them cool at the start of summer.


Close-up of ripe tomatoes growing in the garden. The plant has a sprawling, vine-like growth habit. The stems are pale green, covered with fine hairs. The leaves are green, complex, consist of several leaflets with jagged edges. Tomato fruits are round, juicy, covered with a thin red skin with a glossy and smooth texture.Extend beet harvest by planting under large tomatoes and pruning lower branches for beet greens.

You can extend your beet harvest into summer by planting them underneath large tomato plants. As beet companion plants, tomatoes provide a much-needed respite from intense summer sunlight. Prune the lower branches off your tomatoes so the beet greens will have some room to grow. The beetroots shouldn’t get in the way of tomato roots since the latter goes deep into the soil.

Tomatoes and beets are thirsty plants, especially during peak summer, so water deeply. Beets will soak up water from the top several inches of the soil, and tomatoes will get whatever’s left. Watering in the evening will allow the water to soak deep into the ground before the sun can start evaporating it.

Final Thoughts

Beetroots usually take up 3-6 inches in diameter, depending on the variety, so it’s important to give them enough space to develop. That doesn’t mean you can’t plant them with other things! There are plenty of plants that are happy to accommodate beetroot neighbors.

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