I've mentioned companion planting on the blog before. I don't practice it with any great zeal or worry too much if I've planted bad neighbours near each other. They either get along or not. I'm sure it works to some extent but perhaps the difference is only between a mediocre harvest or a great harvest or maybe no difference at all in some cases. If you are really keen on using companion planting principles in your garden then a good place to look is the SGA guide. It's comprehensive and set out in quite an easy read table format which I like. Although it is an Australian guide, the suggestions aren't always appropriate for my climate. I don't grow potatoes at the same time as my winter brassicas or peas but they are supposedly good neighbours. The potatoes however don't enjoy the cold winters here which the peas and brassicas do and conversely, the brassicas and peas do not enjoy the summer heat that the potatoes relish in my garden. And that may be the key to it all. What works for you in your climate is the best practice to employ.
I planted out a number of potatoes yesterday and while there may be some self-sown sunflowers nearby I didn't remove them. I did however sow some marigold seeds amongst the potatoes because they are good companions but mostly because I like marigolds and I want my garden full and lush and forest-like this summer. And full of flowers too.
There are a number of things flowering in the vegetable garden now. The rocket, some spring onions, coriander, sage, thyme and lavender. I leave most of them alone for as long as I can spare the space. The leaves are for the most part still edible and often the flowers are edible too. The added bonus is that the flowers attract beneficial insects to the garden and they look pretty or at the very least interesting.
I have to say I have been driven to distraction by the computer today. If you are my Facebook friend then you will know I don't actually post very much at all but I do like to 'like' my friends' posts and keep up to date with their happenings. I haven't been able to make it load properly on my computer for a couple of days now. Text only is what I am getting. I've tried all of the tricks and suggestions and I'm ready for a break. Thank goodness for FNwF and spring cleaning and a little bit of yoga. I also planted some Purple King beans to keep my mind on good things instead of technical issues which I have not a clue about.