Thyme Companion Plants And Guide For Growing Thyme

Thyme companion plants are salad burnet, cabbage, potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, shallots, strawberries, blueberries, and roses. The cultivation of this herb is also gaining popularity because of its high demand and easy maintenance.  Let us take a look at how to grow thyme along with its companion plants successfully. 

What Are Thyme Companion Plants

What Are Thyme Companion Plants

Salad burnet, cabbage, potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, shallots, strawberries, blueberries, and roses are the best companion plants for thyme. Thyme itself is one of the best companion plants for a majority of crops because it can repel pests. 

In particular, thyme effectively repels crop pests such as flea beetles, tomato hornworms, cabbage worms, and corn earworms. This way, the plants we’ve mentioned can thrive and disease-free. But what is in thyme that makes it a pest repellant?

Thyme has a compound called thymol that offers insecticidal effects. Thymol is present in pesticides sold in the market. Thyme is also a useful neighbor for plants because it can attract beneficial insects that can feed on pests and help pollinate. 

The aromatic qualities of thyme will attract honeybees to help with pollination. And the combination of pest repelling and predator attracting attributes of thyme will ensure a healthy garden. If you’re thinking of cultivating this multi-purpose herb, read below what plants will love to be its neighbor. 

Salad burnet

Salad burnet is a perennial plant that offers medicinal uses and aesthetic purposes. It enhances the look of the garden, but it also has astringent properties. It adds perfume to the garden, and in addition to thyme, creates a delightful scent in your yard or greenhouse. 

Cabbage

The thymol found in thyme is beneficial for cabbage. It can deter cabbage worms, loopers, moths, flea beetles, and aphids from keeping your leafy greens hole-free. Thyme can also attract ladybugs that will consume aphids and pollinate your vegetables. 

Potatoes

Create a diverse garden by planting potatoes with thyme. Thyme can attract parasitic wasps that will prey on Colorado potato beetles. At the same time, thyme improves the potatoes’ taste for a guaranteed quality harvest of these tubers. 

Tomatoes

Another crop that thyme enhances the flavour of is the tomato. You will also get disease-free fruits because pests like hornworms and whiteflies don’t like thyme. Therefore, you will get flavorful tomatoes free of pests that can affect their quality and growth. 

Shallots

Similar to potatoes and tomatoes, thyme enhances the flavour of shallots. 

Eggplants

To keep garden moths away from eggplants, plant thyme as a companion for these crops. You can stay away from chemical pesticides by taking advantage of this natural pest repellent. 

Strawberries

Berries such as strawberries are excellent companion plants for thyme because the latter deters worms. More so, thyme helps keep the soil moist because it provides ground cover. And because you’re planting thyme in between rows, you can prevent weeds more manageable. 

Blueberries

The hardy characteristic of thyme makes it an ideal companion for crops that are picky about soil conditions. At the same time, you can help in pollinating them for effective yield since thyme attracts pollinators. 

Roses

Keep your garden or greenhouse more beautiful and disease-free by planting roses with thyme. Thyme acts as a pesticide for blackflies and aphids that can affect the quality of your rose bushes. 

What Is Thyme?

Now that you are interested in growing thyme with companion plants, the next step is to know more about this multi-purpose herb. Thyme or Thymus vulgaris is a woody perennial plant from the Lamiaceae family. It is an easy crop to cultivate because it thrives well in harsh environments, including dry and sandy conditions. 

Therefore, if you live in a hot region and you want something very low maintenance to cultivate, thyme is the best choice. Thyme boosts the flavor of other crops, deters pests, and attracts pollinators and pest predators. One can assume that thyme is a multi-purpose crop that will benefit those who are cultivating multiple crops. 

More than as a flavorful herb with antiseptic properties, thyme itself is an eye-pleaser. You can grow them in a greenhouse, and people will buy them for borders and walkways to enhance the look of those areas. This low-growing herb is aromatic and beautiful, with tiny flowers that are well-liked by bees and humans during spring. 

Types Of Thyme

Successful cultivation of thyme requires knowledge in the types of thyme and varieties that will suit you. They have distinct qualities and include the golden lemon, creeping, woolly, caraway, Golden King, Annie Hall, Cilician, Silver Posie, and Bertram Anderson as the popular ones. 

Golden lemon thyme

Golden lemon thyme, from the name itself, smells like lemon. It also has a minty taste that goes well in dishes that need both citrusy and refreshing kick. You can distinguish the golden lemon thyme by its multicolored golden leaves. 

Creeping thyme

Thyme is a low-growing plant, but the creeping thyme is at the lowest height. It only reaches up to 3 inches tall, which makes it great as a ground cover to keep weeds at bay. It is also beautiful to look at with the varying colored flowers ranging from white, pink, magenta, and lavender. 

Woolly thyme

Another low and very flat type of thyme is the woolly thyme. It is called woolly because it feels soft to touch, similar to wool carpets. Because it has no flavor and smell profile, this thyme is used as ornamental plants for patio cracks instead. 

Caraway thyme

Named after the fragrant spice, caraway, caraway thyme offers the same scent of the herb. It grows with pale flowers and is used both ornamentally and spice in different dishes. 

 

Thyme Varieties

Golden King

The Golden King thyme variety is Golden lemon thyme with pink flowers. 

Annie Hall

Annie Hall is a favorite thyme variety because of its green leaves and pale pink flowers. 

Cilician thyme

Cilician thyme is a variety with lively green leaves and pink flowers. 

Silver Posie

Silver Posie is low-maintenance thyme with frosted-looking leaves and light pink flowers. 

Bertram Anderson

Similar to the Golden King, Bertram Anderson thyme has golden leaves and pink flowers. 

How To Grow Thyme?

Thyme is a hardy crop, but you still need to educate yourself with the factors for growing it successfully. The soil, spacing, temperature, maintenance, and harvesting are the significant factors to consider to guarantee effective cultivation. Afterward, one can apply the knowledge into growing thyme in the greenhouse for easier farming alongside thyme’s companion plants. 

Soil

Thyme grows well in a fertilized and well-drained soil. Ensure that it has a pH between 6.0 and 8.0. Remember that thyme tolerates drought, so the soil must drain well. 

At the same time, the ground temperature should be at 70°F if you are planting thyme cuttings. 

Spacing

Thyme is low-growing, but this herb still needs space as it grows well and easily. The spacing between each plant can range from 12 to 24 inches. If you aim to use thyme as a cover, you can use 6-inch spacing for the new plants. 

Temperature

Compared to other herbs, thyme thrives well in hot and sunny weather. Therefore, growing it in a region with warm, dry, and sunny climates is optimal for a successful harvest. In particular, they aim to grow thyme between 68 to 86°F.

These temperatures are usually during spring to early summer. But if you’re growing your thyme indoors, choose a sunny spot. Doing so will help the herb achieve better flavor because the heat will affect the essential oils on the leaves. 

Maintenance

One of the reasons why many people are looking into growing thyme is because it is low maintenance. In fact, you don’t need to do much in watering and feeding. And after you have harvested, you only have to remove the areas that died. 

This is also one reason you need to ensure that you planted thyme in free-draining soil. It is not picky in nutrient requirements, and it can even thrive with minimal soil nutrients. However, you also have to consider the needs of the companion plants you’ve chosen with thyme. 

If you’re growing thyme for aesthetic purposes, you can reshape it after flowering. You can also trim it to have a higher leaf harvest through autumn. Otherwise, thyme can turn woody and tough. 

Harvesting

When should you harvest thyme? You can harvest up to ⅓ of the leaves right before thyme starts flowering. Ensuring regular harvesting will give you continuous yield, and the number of harvesting sessions will only depend on your region’s condition.

For example, you can harvest once a year when half of the flowers have bloomed in the summer. On the other hand, you can also have up to 3 harvesting sessions from late spring to early autumn. Overall, it will take the personal experience to know how many harvesting sessions you can have with your crops. 

It is worth noting that experienced farmers recommend starting harvesting on the plant’s second year onwards instead of the first year. However, studies have shown that the weather conditions before harvest are influential as well. Therefore, you can also harvest thyme during the first year or 160 days after you sowed the seeds. 

The main takeaway here is that the more you harvest and trim thyme, the more it flourishes. Remember to leave the woody portions or 5 inches of the plant to encourage growth. This will also create a neater look of the herbs. 

 

How To Grow Thyme In A Greenhouse?

Thyme is an herb that is frustration-free when it comes to growing it. In the greenhouse, the steps are as straightforward as planting, maintenance, and harvesting. But why should one consider the greenhouse for the cultivation of an easy crop?

Using a greenhouse will allow farmers with limitations in agricultural limitations to harvest thyme and companions plants as effectively. Thyme is a hardy plant, but studies have shown diminishing quality if you let them dry outside after harvesting. You can avoid this by cultivating them in a greenhouse and refer to Krostrade.com about effective greenhouse farming. 

Planting

You can opt to grow thyme in the soil bed of the greenhouse. You’ll only need a small amount of fertilizer or organic matter in the soil for the conditions. It will take the seeds up to 28 days to fully germinate, and the ideal temperature should be at 70°F.

The seeds can grow in shallow rows without covering. Afterward, you can transplant them when they reach a height of 3 inches. Depending on how big your greenhouse is, you can plant thyme plants 9 inches apart or 18 inches apart. 

Maintenance

Another reason why thyme grows excellently in the greenhouse is that the latter offers protection against harsh winds and rains. In fact, thyme can grow well in gravel gardens or grit-filled containers with free-draining soil. As for the maintenance, thyme tolerates drought and only requires a 10-10-10 ratio fertilizer every spring. 

Harvesting

You can start harvesting during the first year before the flowering for better flavor. Cut the thyme plants 2 inches above the ground and avoid cutting the stems at their base. Another good indication that it’s good to harvest is when the plants’ softwood is still green. 

 

Once you harvested the plants, dry them in a warm shade over sheets of newspaper. It can take up to 4 years for the plants to become woody. Once that happens, you can plant new thyme seeds. 

How To Use Thyme?

Cooking

Both fresh and dried thyme is useful for cooking. You can also preserve this herb in oil or vinegar as flavorful and more concentrated additions to different dishes. Thyme goes well with butter, mayonnaise, cabbage, beans, green vegetables, potatoes, meat, fish, and eggs. 

 

If you’re using fresh thyme, you have the option to add it with the stem or just the leaves. Some recipes require intact thyme, while the leaves also work as a garnish. The leaves are tiny, which means you don’t have to chop them.

 

Dried thyme is an excellent substitute for fresh thyme because of its shelf life. But if you’re using it as a substitute, remember that its flavor is stronger. It’s best to add dried herbs at the beginning of the recipe for a much more incorporated harmony of flavors. 

Medicinal uses and benefits

Thyme also has a wide range of medicinal uses. The compound found in thyme, thymol, has shown its potential in treating respiratory, cardiovascular, and nervous disorders. You can also use it as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and antimicrobial. 

 

Some medicinal uses of thyme include dental varnish, germ-killing mouthwash, and soothing the skin and scalp. Thyme works as treatment of bronchitis, sore throat, diarrhea, flatulence, diuretic, appetite stimulant, and anti-parasitic as well. The plant can be applied directly to the skin, but thyme oil and extract are also popular remedies. 

Conclusion

Thyme is an herb that is loved by a lot of crops because it enhances their flavors, deters parasites, and attracts predators that feed on pests. Salad burnet, cabbage, potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, shallots, strawberries, blueberries, and roses are excellent thyme companion plants. Thyme is also alluring for honeybees that help with pollination, and the way this herb grows can keep weeds at bay. 

 

Growing thyme is stress-free because it is a hardy plant. It thrives well in drought, and it has minimal soil requirements in terms of fertilization. If you live in an area where agricultural resources are limited, you can still harvest this multi-purpose herb without any greenhouse problems.

 

Overall, thyme is not just a useful flavor enhancer in different dishes. It also offers natural pesticidal benefits to other crops, enhances the look of an area, and acts as an herbal medicine for various medical conditions. Take advantage of companion plant cultivation with thyme and reap these multiple benefits without high levels of effort. 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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