10 Best Companion Plants for Zucchini

Keep your zucchini healthy and naturally pest-free with these top companion plants.

zucchini plant in bloom
Photo: Dean Schoeppner

Zucchini are some of the most popular vegetables to grow in backyard gardens, but they can be prone to a number of different pests, including cucumber beetles, squash bugs, and squash vine borers. Zucchini plants may also fail to produce fruit due to a lack of pollination and other factors. The good news is these issues can be easily fixed with the help of companion plants. The following vegetables, flowers, and popular herbs make good companion plants for zucchini because they encourage natural pest control and provide other benefits. 

01 of 10

Blue Hubbard Squash

blue hubbard squash

Getty Images / EvergreenPlanet

Squash bugs and squash vine borers can devastate zucchini crops and leave you with wilted plants or damaged fruit. One of the best ways to deter these troublesome insects is to lure them away from your zucchini crops by planting Hubbard squash nearby as a trap crop. Borers and squash bugs generally prefer the taste of this winter squash, so they’ll migrate to these plants and leave your zucchini alone.

02 of 10


long island mammoth dill anethum graveolens
Marty Baldwin

The flowers of dill will attract pollinators to your garden, which can help pollinate your zucchini plants and boost your harvest. What’s more, dill flowers are irresistible to parasitic wasps that will feed on squash vine borers. Even after dill bolts in the summer heat, you can leave your plants in place in your garden to help attract these beneficial insects for natural pest control.

03 of 10


yellow and orange nasturtiums
Peter Krumhardt

Nasturtiums boast attractive orange and yellow flowers that draw hummingbirds and other pollinators to your garden beds to help pollinate your zucchini. Nasturtium also can act as a trap crop for slugs and snails, which generally prefer these plants to many other veggies. For a truly stunning and space saving display, try planting climbing nasturtium which can use the same trellising system as your zucchinis.

04 of 10


Close up of yellow Marigolds
Jacob Fox

Marigolds can help to draw pollinators and beneficial insects such as lacewings to your vegetable patch. If your zucchinis have suffered from aphids in previous years, adding marigolds to your garden can keep these troublesome pests away. Marigolds are also very easy to grow from seed and you can choose between dwarf varieties or full-sized plants depending on the size of your garden.

05 of 10


corn plant

Dean Schoeppner

If you’ve heard of the Three Sisters gardening method, you’re probably aware that winter squash, corn and beans grow well together. Zucchini can be substituted for winter squash in this plant partnership, because it's also a good companion for corn and beans. Zucchini vines even may be able to use cornstalks as a natural support, eliminating the need for extra trellising.

06 of 10


close up of sunflower

Bob Stefko

Similar to corn, sunflowers have tall, sturdy stalks that can serve as supports for climbing zucchini vines. Sunflowers are also very attractive to bees and other pollinators, which love the rich nectar and pollen of these flowers. Planting sunflowers with your zucchini can boost the pollination rates of your zucchini plants and result in a larger harvest.

07 of 10


close up of borage

Robert Cardillo

Borage is a useful plant to keep in garden beds for a number of different reasons. Pollinators love its bright blue flowers and planting borage can help increase the activity of beneficial insects near you zucchini plants too. If you’re new to working with borage, the edible flowers make pretty salad toppers and ice cube accents, while the leaves have a refreshing cucumber flavor that’s delicious in homemade salads.

08 of 10

Beans and Peas

close up of pea plant

Kindra Clineff

Beans, peas, and other legumes can naturally improve your garden soil by providing nitrogen to nearby plants. Interplanting zucchinis with legumes can give your zucchini vines a natural boost of nutrients. Even better, zucchinis, beans, and peas can all use the same trellising system, saving you time and gardening space too.

09 of 10


pile of harvested radishes in garden bed
Marty Baldwin

Cucumber beetles are small, yellow and black insects that can riddle your zucchini with holes and transmit bacterial wilt to your plants. Planting radishes near your zucchini can repel these destructive insects. Radishes are also small and fast growing, so you can easily maximize your garden space by planting them beneath your zucchini vines.

10 of 10


'New York White' garlic in wicker basket

Marty Baldwin

Garlic and other members of the allium family, such as onions, chives and leeks, are well-known for the pest repelling abilities. These plants are also highly attractive to pollinators and beneficial insects when they’re allowed to flower. Planting garlic around your zucchini plants is a smart way to utilize garden space. Just keep in mind that garlic is a slow-growing crop that is generally planted in the autumn before you intend to harvest it.

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  1. Anwar A, Gould E, Tinson R, Groom M, Hamilton CJ. Think Yellow and Keep Green-Role of Sulfanes from Garlic in Agriculture. Antioxidants (Basel). 2016 Dec 30;6(1):3.

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