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Cabbage, and a whole bunch of herbs.

But wait - doesn’t cabbage get really big? Why plant so many things around it?

While it’s true that cabbage does get huge (and that we probably could have used a wider row), cabbage is also very sensitive to bugs. Last year, our cabbage was pretty chewed up. This year, we did some research on companion planting. Companion planting is a form of polyculture in which certain crops are planted close together in order to achieve better growth than you would find in a monoculture. This is because the plants that are grown together with companion planting can assist in pest control, pollination, and in creating a better environment for particular plants (i.e. providing shade, adding nutrients to the soil, etc.). A famous example of companion planting is the Three Sisters, a trio of vegetables planted that Native Americans planted in conjunction because they grew well together. These plants were beans, squash, and corn. 

With our cabbage, we used companion planting to prevent pests. The herbs we planted around our cabbage were hyssop, European pennyroyal, dill, thyme, and catnip. I hope we can repel some animal pests with the garlic growing next to the cabbage!