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I did a little research on growing squash with potatoes, and was wondering why they're not good for growing together.

  • Is this because they take up the same nutrients?
  • Or is because the squash will cover all of the ground for the potatoes to be dug up?

Any other reason?

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  • surprised you didn't also see the reason why when you found that information - increased risk of blight, apparently if you plant the two together, or plant potatoes in ground that's previously grown solanum varieties
    – Bamboo
    May 23 '18 at 9:25
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According to www.luv2garden.com...Good candidates to companion plant with potatoes include Onions, garlic and Alliums, Horseradish, beans, corn, cabbage and members of the cabbage family, dead nettle, flax, peas, marigold, comfrey, Sweet alyssum.

Bad candidates to companion plant with potatoes include Apple, Celery, Cherry, Cucumber, Pumpkin, Raspberry, Rosemary, Sunflower, Tomato, eggplant, pepper, radishes, turnip, asparagus, cucumber, kohlrabi, pumpkin - squash family, rutabaga.

Planting Onions with Potatoes

Intercropping of Alliums, in particular Onions and Garlic with Potatoes, has been demonstrated to have substantial impact on pest populations. Aphids and other sap sucking green flies and their maggot offspring, leafhoppers and bean beetles were repelled from the potato crops.

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I find this a rather bizarre claim based on my 25 years of experience growing potatoes and squash side by side in a rotation scheme. But evidently some gardeners have had a bad experience and so it is worth viewing both sides.

Some arguments against:

  • Striped cucumber beetles will rather enjoy both squash and potatoes. And since potatoes start early in the season and squash go late into the season this offers the beetles a lengthy opportunity to become numerous. They get going on the spuds and can just leap over onto the squash. These beetles can be a vector for various diseases and if one of them clobbers your vegetable garden then that is clearly bad.
  • Both crops are heavy feeders and will require that the soil be carefully nourished each year.
  • Non-spreading squash such as zucchini have large leaves and the vining types can rapidly cover and shade out the potatoes if planted too close.
  • Potatoes require frequent scouting for potato beetles so the squash vines need to be kept out of the potato patch to keep the rows navigable and all foliage visible.
  • It is good practice to hill over squash vine nodes with a hoe as the vines spread. You don't want to be doing that when there are potato tubers close to the surface of the soil.

Arguments for:

  • I would claim that most if not all of these objections are manageable. Give squash enough space, feed the soil heavily, guide the expanding vines to keep them under control.
  • Only once were the beetles a problem; every year for me they are quite numerous, but that one year when spring was very dry and the squash took a long time to get established the beetles could eat them down before they had a chance to grow and I had to replant. The damage they cause to my potatoes is triflingly small.

It only takes one bad experience for a rule to get established and become a law for beginners and the foolish, and the guidance of the more experienced. The world of gardening is full of such trivia.

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