10 Best Companion Plants for Cucumbers

Choosing the right cucumber companion plants can boost your harvest and keep your vines naturally pest-free.

cluster of chives
Photo: Marty Baldwin

Cucumbers (Cucumis sativus) are some of the most popular vegetables to grow among gardeners, but these vining plants can be prone to troublesome pests, like squash bugs and cucumber beetles, and may yield smaller harvests in poor soil. Luckily, growing the right companion plants near your cucumber patch can be an easy way to keep pests in check and grow more tasty cucumbers, too!

Whether you’re growing your veggies in pots or garden beds, choosing the right companion plants for cucumbers can reduce the need for pesticides and fertilizers.

01 of 10

Beans and Peas

close up of pea plant

Kindra Clineff

Beans, peas, and other legumes are well known for their nitrogen-fixing abilities, which naturally improve garden soil. Planting legumes near your cucumbers and other veggies will give your crops a much-needed nutrient boost and may even increase your harvest yields.

Additionally, beans and peas have similar growing requirements to those of cucumbers, so you don’t need to do a lot of extra prep work if you want to grow these plants together. You can even use the same trellising system to support both plants if you’re growing vining type cucumbers.

02 of 10


close up of a corn stalk

Bob Stefko

Tall and sturdy cornstalks can provide natural support for vining cucumbers to climb, meaning you may not need to invest in additional trellising. Just keep in mind that cornstalks may struggle to support cucumber vines that produce large fruits.  To avoid this, try out cucumber types like ‘Lemon’ or Mexican Sour Gherkins, which produce smaller fruit that won’t overwhelm your corn plants.

03 of 10


fernleaf dill anethum graveolens
Dean Schoeppner

If you love dill pickles, growing dill near your cucumbers is an obvious choice that will come in handy during canning season. In fact, growing dill near your cucumbers has other benefits as well:

Once in flower, dill attracts pollinators, which can result in a larger harvest of cucumbers. Dill can also be used for natural pest control, as it is irresistible to beneficial insects, such as parasitic wasps that prey on common cucumber pests.

04 of 10


Close up of yellow Marigolds
Jacob Fox

Marigolds and cucumbers are another excellent companion plant pairing for your garden.  This is because marigolds are some of the absolute best plants to grow if you want to naturally repel garden pests. Some of the many insects that avoid the scent of marigolds include thrips, white flies, and squash bugs.

05 of 10


yellow and orange nasturtiums
Peter Krumhardt

Like marigolds, nasturtium is the ideal plant for natural pest control. While often grown as ornamentals, nasturtiums boast edible leaves and flowers that attract beneficial insects, such as ladybugs. Nasturtiums can also be used as trap crops, as pests like aphids often prefer them to your other edible veggies.

06 of 10

Root Vegetables

Mike Dieter.

Vining cucumbers tend to grow vertically and can leave a lot of open space in your garden where weeds can crop up. Pairing your cucumbers with shorter root vegetables, like carrots and beets, will help to maximize your garden space and keep weeds in check. For best results, try succession planting your root vegetables every two to three weeks from spring until mid-summer.

07 of 10


close up of borage

Robert Cardillo

Borage is an often overlooked flowering herb, but it is a joy to grow thanks to its edible, periwinkle blue flowers and fleshy leaves that taste a bit like cucumbers themselves! Planting borage in your garden beds can simplify your cucumber plant care, as this plant is naturally repellant to many common garden pests. Borage is also a top plant to try to increase pollinator activity and boost your cucumber harvest, too.

08 of 10


Marty Baldwin

Cucumber beetles are one of the most common cucumber pests, but the good news is these destructive insects hate the smell of chives!  Planting flowering chives near your cucumbers can keep your vines pest-free, while the smell of chive flowers will lure bees and other pollinators to your garden.

09 of 10


Cretan oregano
Denny Schrock

Another top pest-repelling herb, oregano’s strong aroma is repulsive to aphids, squash bugs, and other sap-sucking pests. That makes oregano an obvious choice as a cucumber companion plant. Oregano is also super easy to grow, and it’s a perennial in zones 5 and above, so it will keep coming back year after year with minimal fuss.

10 of 10


close up of sunflower

Bob Stefko

Just like corn, sunflowers’ sturdy stalks can make wonderful natural supports for your vining cucumbers. Additionally, sunflowers are some of the best plants to grow if you want to attract bees and other pollinators. Interplanting sunflowers with your cucumbers will increase pollinator activity in your garden and result in a larger harvest of cucumbers.

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