Thursday, June 26, 2014

The Mix & Match Guide to Companion Planting

I'm a suburbanite trying to be a country girl.  I moved to the "great outdoors", bought a dozen chicks, and determined that I was going to live off the land. Eleven years later, I've progressed from "living off the land" to "well, if it grows, we'll eat it, and if not there's always the supermarket".  I've had a garden every Spring and Summer. The first year it was a few tomatoes, and this year I have a 400 square foot garden and three raised beds.  I've read everything there was, or so I thought, about gardening. I've researched online, and perused books and homesteading magazines, and hired myself out as a field hand just to learn the tricks of the trade  When "The Mix & Match Guide to Companion Planting" became available through Blogging for Books, I ordered it. I was sure it couldn't possibly offer me any information that I didn't already have, but I was curious. I am so glad that I did!  This book is amazing for both the new or seasoned gardener.  The introductory pages offer insight into different gardening methods, like permaculture and planting according to lunar phases/ There's a section on beneficial weeds, most of which I had just pulled and thrown in a heap in the field.  The best part is the companion planting flip section.  Simply choose your main crop as the center card, and line up the dots to find suitable companions for the garden.  I just bought some late season seed potatoes, flipped to the potato card, and found that string beans and nasturtium would help my potatoes to grow, and would deter pests.  The main crop cards are fairly limited, but seem to address the most common vegetables one might plant.  I am hoping that in the future they offer a second edition, and add even more vegetables and fruits!  Thank you to Blogging for Books who provided me with this book free of charge in exchange for an unbiased review.

Author Josie Jeffery also has a website where you can learn some more great gardening ideas at  Her book, The Mix & Match Guide to Companion Planting is available from Amazon at

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