Thyme is a great herb to grow indoors or outdoors. It's easy to care for, and has many medicinal and culinary uses. But what companion plants should you grow with thyme? In this blog post, we'll discuss some of the best plants to pair with thyme, and why they work well together. So whether you're just starting out with thyme, or are looking for new ideas for thyme companion plants, keep reading!
What is thyme?
Thyme is a member of the mint family and is related to lavender, oregano, and rosemary plants. Thyme is a perennial plant that can grow up to 1 foot tall. It has broad leaves that are green on the top and white on the bottom. The flowers are small and purple. Like some other herbs, Thyme is used as a herb in cooking, and it also has medicinal properties. It has many varieties including lemon thyme, creeping thyme, Common thyme "thymus vulgaris" & thyme 'Archer's Gold'
Thyme Companion Plants
Companion plants are plants that live in close proximity to each other and are known to help each other grow. These plants can be used to improve air quality, reduce plant stress, increases biodiversity, and also attracts beneficial insects which flourish through the growth of thyme. There are many different types of companion plants, so it is important to choose the right one for your garden.
For thyme companion planting, one must grow other plants with thyme for better results. Some of the best thyme companion plants are as follows.
Tomatoes are a great companion plant for thyme plants. They can help control pests and provide nectar for bees, which in turn will help pollinate thyme plants. They also share some of the same growing requirements, so if you have tomatoes growing nearby, include thyme in your space.
Lavender is a sweet, herbal plant and a popular choice for companion planting with thyme. The two plants can work together to repel pests. Lavender helps enhance the smell of thyme in the garden or around the home. Lavender helps to keep deer away, which can be helpful if you are growing thyme for culinary use. Lavender also has fragrant oil that can help with fragrance in the garden.
Rosemary is a fragrant, evergreen shrub that can grow up to 4 feet tall. It has leathery leaves and grows clusters of small, white flowers in spring. Rosemary is a great companion plant to thyme because it helps to suppress the odor of thyme while providing its own sweet smell. Additionally, rosemary is reputed to improve air quality and deter pests.
Parsley is a flavorful, aromatic herb that pairs well with thyme. Parsley can help repel insects, add flavor to foods, and soothe the stomach. Parsley also contains antioxidants that can help to protect the thyme plant from damage caused by pests and diseases. Additionally, parsley is a good source of vitamins A and C, as well as folate.
Sage, a native of the Mediterranean region, is a versatile plant that can be used as a companion to thyme. It can be planted on borders or mixed in with other thyme plants in the garden. Sage has many benefits that make it an ideal plant for use in natural landscaping. These benefits include attracting beneficial insects, increasing soil fertility, and controlling weed growth. Today, sage is still considered a good companion for thyme because it helps to keep the thyme in check, providing an aromatic balance.
Cabbage is a cool-season vegetable that is grown mainly for its leaves and edible flowers. The cabbage leaves are a good companion plant with thyme because they can deter pests and help to repel deer, rabbits, and other animals. A cabbage family plant, such as cabbages, or brussels sprouts, is a good option for those who want to grow their own vegetables. These plants are easy to grow and do not require a lot of space.
Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) is a perennial flowering plant that belongs to the Asteraceae family. Chamomile has been used as traditional herbal medicine and is thought to possess numerous health benefits, such as helping reducing anxiety, insomnia, and stress. Chamomile can also be used as a companion plant with thyme, as they have complementary growing habits and grow well together in gardens.
Dill is a low-growing perennial herb that is easily grown in a variety of soils, making it an ideal companion plant for thyme. Dill helps to deter pests and can also work as a flavoring agent for thyme plants. Dill can also be used as a natural dye.
Fennel is an interesting plant to pair with thyme. Both plants have a licorice flavor and can be used together in many different dishes. Thyme is a popular herb for cooking, whereas fennel can be used as a flavoring for sausage or in salads. Fennel also has anti-fungal properties, which makes it desirable for gardeners who are looking for ways to prevent fungus growth.
Marjoram is a lesser-known but popular companion plant with thyme. The two have many complementary qualities and can be used together to enhance the growth of each other. They are good companions for gardens that need a strong scent, as marjoram provides a more subtle aroma than thyme. Marjoram also grows better in dry climates, while thyme is better suited to wetter areas.
Some people enjoy the scent of mint as a companion plant with thyme. Mint is known to repel pests and can help add freshness to thyme-scented plants. Mint is also drought tolerant and can grow in a variety of soil types.
Plants You Shouldn’t Grow Near Thyme
There are a few plants that you should definitely not grow next to thyme. All of these plants including hydrangea, azaleas, rhododendrons, and maples. They produce large quantities of sap that can damage thyme if it gets on the plant.
Here are some other non-compatible plants which you should not grow with thyme.
Cilantro (Coriander) should not be planted as a companion plant to thyme. These plants belong to different families and have different tolerances for pests and diseases. Additionally, cilantro has a strong, pungent taste that may compete with thyme.
Basil is not a good companion plant for thyme because of their different preferences in soil and sunlight. Basil does best in warm, dry climates, while thyme prefers moist soils. Basil also grows quickly rigorously, overshadowing thyme. Basil can produce thymol, a potent chemical that can inhibit the growth of thyme. Basil also competes with thyme for wateand nutrients, and can block sunlight from reaching the thyme.
Chives should not be planted as companion plants to thyme because they share several incompatible characteristics. For one, chives are an annual plant, while thyme is a perennial. Additionally, chives are susceptible to pests and diseases, while thyme is resistant to many of the same problems. Finally, both plants grow in different soil types and require different watering schedules.
Many gardeners consider onions to be a companion plant to thyme because the two plants seem to complement each other. However, onions should not be planted as a companion plant to thyme, because of their different growth habits and contrasting needs. Onions grow slowly and spread out, while thyme grows quickly and spreads up. Additionally, onions contain sulfides that can inhibit the growth of thyme.
Other than adding companion plants & avoiding the plants which are not compatible with thyme, you must take care of certain needs of thyme.
Requirements for thyme plant
For planting thyme, the following are certain requirements you need to follow for its optimal growth
Water is essential for the growth of thyme plants, but how much water they need varies depending on the location and climate. In warm climates, thyme needs up to 3 inches of water per week, while in cooler climates it needs up to 1 inch of water per week. Plants that are grown in containers also need more water than those grown in the ground.
Sun exposure is essential for thyme to thrive. Thyme grows best in full sun exposure but can tolerate partial sun or light shade. In order to ensure that thyme receives the optimum amount of sunlight, it should be planted in an area that gets at least six hours of direct sunlight each day.
Soil conditions are a critical factor in the growth of any plant. Thyme, like other plants in the mint family, requires well-drained soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.5. The thyme seeds also need good fertility and adequate moisture to thrive. Thyme grows best in full sun or part shade but will do well in medium to wet soils.
Humidity requirements for thyme can vary depending on the region in which it is grown, but a range of 75 to 85 percent is typical. Thyme should be kept dry and free from pests during storage, so a humidity-controlled environment is ideal.
Harvesting Thyme: When and How to Harvest
Harvesting thyme can be a bit of a chore, but with a little know-how, it can be a quick and easy task. Here are some tips on when and how to harvest thyme:
- Start by picking the leaves that are starting to yellow and get limp.
- Check the plant daily for new growth
- When you see new growth, it's time to harvest.
Start by cutting off the stems of the thyme plants. Next, cut the leaves off the stem at a 45-degree angle. Finally, use a knife to cut off the top of the stem where the leaves were attached.
Thyme pests and diseases
Thyme is a popular herb used in cooking and as a medicinal plant. It is susceptible to pests and diseases which can significantly reduce yields. Here are some of the most common thyme pests and diseases:
Thyme can be attacked by insects, including tomato hornworms, whiteflies, flea beetles, aphids, cabbage worms, and mealybugs. These pests secrete a sticky substance that clogs plant tissue, reducing growth and yield.