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Companion plants - where are the trees?

 
Amedean Messan
pollinator
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Location: Melbourne FL, USA - Pine and Palmetto Flatland, Sandy and Acidic
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So, companion planting seems to be notoriously detailed for seasonal plants.  I understand carrots and basil works great for tomatoes but I need deep rooted plants to bring up moisture, nitrogen and minerals from the ground.  Now, lets say I want to grow tomatoes under the shade of a tree.  What trees are good companion plants for tomatoes.  In my case tomatoes grow almost twice as good near a tree despite what is advertised and are more drought tolerant ( North Carolina ).  It would be nice to companion fruiting trees and perhaps evergreens.
 
                                      
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Location: Amsterdam, the netherlands
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according to our pdc teacher nightshades grow well under walnuts.
due to the allellopathic* qualities of walnut certain diseases that most nightshades are susceptible for dont get a chance

allellopathy is when plants or trees give of substances that influence other plants chemically. this can be a negative or positive influence. A lot of plants are badly affected by juglons (the walnut chem)
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
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Location: North Central Michigan
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I have trees and shrubs in every single bed on my property..every single one of them..I strongly believe in planting trees in your beds..you have to do your research..see if you can pick up a good book that gives references on what grows with what..i do like some of the old rodale organic gardening books for that information but even that has some old fashioned ideas.
 
Travis Philp
gardener
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Location: ZONE 5a Lindsay Ontario Canada
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Brenda, not sure if you can comment on this but; in general, would you say twice the recommended spacing between fruit trees in beds, leaves enough sun exposure for veggies?
 
Paula Edwards
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The walnut-tomato thing is really interesting. Potatoes are solanacae as well.
And what about an apple tree?
I think the main disadvantage is the stage where you try to prune your tree (the tomatoes might be gone), but if there is something perennial like a spiny gooseberry.
 
                                    
Posts: 147
Location: Anoka Sand Plain, MN Zone 4/5, Sunset Zone 43
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ediblecities wrote:
The walnut-tomato thing is really interesting. Potatoes are solanacae as well.


in gaia's garden when a walnut guild is discussed it is said that although tomatoes and peppers are not affected by jugalone potatoes are.
 
                    
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David Jacke and Eric Toensmier's Edible Forest Gardens (http://www.edibleforestgardens.com/) goes into this in more depth than any other source Im aware of. you'll have to read some, understand the theory presented and then see the charts at the back of book 2- once you have the basics, the charts will help you create tree-companion planting based on site specific considerations.

if you are in the northern hemisphere, read it now. it will eat your summer days up.
 
Amedean Messan
pollinator
Posts: 928
Location: Melbourne FL, USA - Pine and Palmetto Flatland, Sandy and Acidic
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Thanks so very much, that last link has been the most helpful to me.  I was browsing through Amazon and found this book but it was a bit too pricey for me at the time being.  I put the 2 volumes in my wish list and I will surely look into the books in the future.
 
Paula Edwards
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Yesterday I read that you should not plant any nightshade member near apricot trees, because they share the same diseases.
So this topic has two sides.
Potatoes would be a good crop under trees however, because they need space as you eat a lot of it.
I think it depends as well where you live and if you live in a high latitude this concept may not work for you, because of low light levels.
 
Travis Philp
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Location: ZONE 5a Lindsay Ontario Canada
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Wouldn't the digging of the potatoes be damanging to the trees root system? Even growing above ground in hay, potatoes sometimes have to be dug out. I suppose you could leave those ones to perennialize...
 
            
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Location: Ontario, Canada (44.265475, -77.960029)
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christhamrin wrote:
in gaia's garden when a walnut guild is discussed it is said that although tomatoes and peppers are not affected by jugalone potatoes are.


Many plants such as tomato, potato, blackberry, blueberry, azalea, mountain laurel, rhododendron, red pine and apple may be injured or killed within one to two months of growth within the root zone of these trees.

Conflicting expertise yet again.
 
Dave Zoller
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Location: Kentucky
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locust trees are leguminous, so should be helpful to any plants grown nearby. the michael phillups book "the apple grower" goes into plant ecosystems around apple trees... right now i remember comfrey grown and chopped down for mulch.
 
Jordan Lowery
pollinator
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Location: zone 7
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we had a pretty big tomato plant under the south side of a big asian pear tree  as well as a cherry and a nectarine. really i think you can plant a tomato under most fruit trees as long as it gets enough sun.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/email
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