Living, Food

Companion Gardening Guide to... Cannabis

Let’s talk companion gardening with cannabis plants: have you considered it? Is it a far-fetched idea for you? Is it a reasonable thing to try?

Plants need a friend or two to help them grow well. NatureHub co-founder and a keen gardener J Harvey Lewis wrote a guide to Companion Gardening; he shares that this method helps garden crops grow faster and is a means of insect control.

Is marijuana companion gardening worth it, though? Can cultivating plants next to therapeutic marijuana crops be great for sustainability and health? Let’s discover how it can be part of your gardening practice!

5 W’s of companion gardening with cannabis

Before digging in the soil and creating friendships among plants, let’s have a quick Q&A sesh to understand the practice of companion planting better.

Who should try companion gardening with cannabis?

Gardeners, food cultivators, herbalists, marijuana and hemp consumers, earth stewards, and just the curious.

What is companion gardening about?

Companion planting is all about strategically growing plants, herbs and flowers together to improve plant health and production. Yes, it works!

It also sustains soil better and makes you a more efficient gardener as you learn the allies of a growing space (plants, insects, microorganisms).

When should I do companion gardening with marijuana?

Short answer: all year round! You can practice indoor gardening (in large containers inside grow tents) or seasonal outdoor growing (directly in your garden).

Where can I practice companion gardening with marijuana?

You can practice growing marijuana in places legal to grow marijuana in the U.S. and other countries around the world.

Why should I try it?

You will have immediate access to your food and medicine, practice sustainability, earth stewardship and understand what grows well together. Also, it’s fun.

Garden friends of cannabis

Particular vegetable garden herbs, flowers, and crops can contribute to the health and optimal growth of marijuana plants. If you are interested in permaculture or intercropping, these are some allies to consider when companion planting with cannabis.

Mint

This aromatic medicinal perennial garden herb has a great aroma that deters unwanted pests such as squirrels that can dig up cannabis plants. Mint is like the police in the garden — it serves and protects. 👮🏽‍♀️

Basil

Fragrant basil is excellent for preventing invasions of beetles, aphids, and other adversary insects that like to destroy crops. Pro-tip: harvest basil for your meal while pruning your cannabis leaves to make herbal tea.

Legumes

Beans, cowpeas, and peas add nitrogen to the soil that cannabis plants need for foliage and flowers. Beans are protein for you — and nutrients for garden soil. Win-win.

Marigolds

These yellow, orange, and or red flowers give garden rodents something to chew to spare your marijuana plants from being obliterated. Marigolds are a perfect distraction so your marijuana crop can shine!

You can find more beneficial garden friends here.

My experience with companion planting and cannabis

I live in Illinois, a state that has legalized recreational marijuana as of January 1, 2020.  As a seasoned sustainable urban garden homesteader, I have been into companion planting for many seasons to cultivate healing foods and improve my soil while practicing earth stewardship.

For example, my heirloom tomatoes spend time with my purple Thai basil, while my spaghetti squash works together with my West African cowpeas in my three sisters garden patch.

I grow my own vegetables, raise backyard chickens for fresh eggs, and harvest medicinal herbs to help me better control gastroparesis, a debilitating digestive disease I have lived with for twenty years. I use medical marijuana to alleviate nausea, pain, and anxiety that comes with this chronic illness, and I will be adding it to my companion planting practice.

Illinois allows medical marijuana patients to grow a limited amount of cannabis plants, so I’m looking forward to intercropping my cannabis plants with marigolds, dill, and bush beans. Practicing this allows me to have immediate access to my healing crops, practice sustainability while sustaining my growing space and my health.

Sustainability and healing are all part of practicing this method of cultivation.

Are you a cannabis cultivator or consumer?  Do you practice companion planting in your vegetable garden? Do you still think it’s far-fetched for you to do? 😉 Let us know in the comments below!


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About Jacqueline Smith

Jacqueline is a guest writer at NatureHub. She writes about her experience and knowledge about sustainable urban gardening, permaculture, homesteading, and food forests.
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