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With its soft gray-green foliage and sweet, earthy flavor, garden sage (Salvia officinalis) is a staple in many herb gardens. But did you know that planting the right companions next to your sage can help it thrive? Choosing plants that enhance flavor, deter pests, or assist in growth is key to getting the most out of your sage plant.

Companion planting is an organic, chemical-free way to create an ecosystem in your garden where different plants support each other’s health and productivity.

Choosing the right plants to grow beside sage can make all the difference. Here are the best companion plants for sage.

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What is Companion Planting?

Companion planting is a method that involves strategically planting combinations of vegetables, herbs, flowers, grains, and legumes to achieve better flavor, healthier plants, and larger harvests.

Companion planting focuses on thoughtful plant pairings and crop rotations to promote diversity. This approach allows different plant species to support and nourish each other, creating a garden ecosystem that benefits both plants and gardeners.

The advantages of companion planting stem from its ability to manage pests, enrich soil nutrients, provide shade, and attract pollinators.

Understanding which plants complement each other can significantly enhance the health and productivity of vegetable gardens for home gardeners, homesteaders, and small-scale farmers. Implementing simple changes in planting arrangements helps promote beneficial plant interactions. These natural partnerships can reduce pests, optimize space, improve taste, and increase crop yields without relying on pesticides or synthetic fertilizers.


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Sage is beneficial for strawberries as it attracts bees and other pollinators, which can help increase the strawberry yield. Sage also deters common strawberry pests such as slugs, snails, and fungi, promoting healthier growth.

Strawberries are low-growing and efficiently utilize the space at the base of sage, avoiding competition for nutrients. Additionally, strawberry runners help maintain soil moisture around the sage, creating a mutually beneficial growing environment.

Related: How to Grow Strawberries

Brussels Sprouts

brussel sprouts
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Brussels sprouts benefit from sage’s pest-repelling properties, particularly against moths that target them. Sage’s proximity also enhances the flavor of Brussels sprouts, adding value to your garden. This pairing is ideal for maximizing space and resources in your garden, promoting healthy growth for both plants.


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Broccoli, like Brussels sprouts, finds an excellent companion in sage, which repels common pests and enhances the vegetable’s flavor. This companion planting allows both plants to grow without interference from pests, increasing their yield and quality. The shared environmental preferences of broccoli and sage make them compatible garden mates.


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Beans are nitrogen-fixing plants that enrich the soil, which is advantageous for sage, a nutrient-demanding herb. Bean vines can use the sturdier sage plants as natural trellises, supporting their growth without hindering sage.

Sage, in return, helps protect bean plants from aphids and Japanese beetles through its natural repellent properties. The flowers of bean plants also attract beneficial pollinators that aid in pollinating nearby sage plants.

Related: How to Build a Bean Teepee


Container vegetables gardening. Vegetable garden on a terrace. Herbs, tomatoes growing in container .
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Sage is a natural repellent to flea beetles and attracts beneficial insects that support tomato plant health. If you are dealing with spider mites on tomatoes, planting sage alongside cilantro or dill can help keep them at bay.


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Rosemary and sage are excellent companions as they thrive under similar conditions. Both prefer loose, alkaline soil and full sun exposure. The similar watering and soil preferences make them easy to care for simultaneously.

In addition, planting them together enhances their aromatic qualities, as they can stimulate each other’s production of essential oils. Rosemary’s robust flavor and scent help repel pests that might otherwise target sage.

How to Make Rosemary Water for Hair


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Cabbage thrives in well-drained, nutrient-rich soil and benefits from being planted near sage, which can deter pests. The robust growth of cabbage in the presence of sage demonstrates the effectiveness of companion planting for pest management and nutrient optimization. Cabbage also benefits from the pollinators attracted to sage, enhancing its growth and health.


oregano on a white plant pot
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Oregano and sage enjoy similar growing conditions, which makes them good garden companions. The proximity of oregano can lead to more vigorous growth and enhanced flavor in sage.

Oregano’s strong scent also masks sage from pests. Both herbs benefit from well-draining soil and moderate pH levels, simplifying garden maintenance.


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Sage is known to improve the flavor of carrots while repelling common pests such as deer and carrot rust flies. Planting sage near carrots or using it as a border plant helps create a protective barrier against these pests.


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Thyme and sage make excellent companions, particularly in hot, dry conditions where they thrive. The essential oils in thyme can enhance the flavor of sage, while thyme’s spreading roots help aerate and improve the soil structure of sage. As a ground cover, thyme helps retain soil moisture and prevents weed growth around sage plants.


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With their bright flowers, Nasturtiums add visual appeal and repel pests such as whiteflies, which can affect sage. The flowers of nasturtiums attract pollinators that benefit the sage plants as well.

Planting nasturtiums around sage can create a vibrant and pest-resistant garden area. Additionally, nasturtiums are easy to grow and manage alongside sage, making them an ideal companion in any herb or vegetable garden.


bunch of green and fresh parsley leaves
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Parsley and sage coexist well without competing for resources, and when planted together, both benefit from high pollination rates. Parsley’s ability to attract beneficial insects helps enhance sage plants’ overall health and yield. This companion planting is particularly useful in small gardens where space efficiency is important.


Fresh radishes on old wooden table
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Radishes grow quickly and can be planted densely around sage for effective pest protection. Their spicy scent helps mask the aroma of sage, deterring garden pests from settling. Radishes are harvested earlier in the season, which allows for efficient crop rotation with later-maturing sage.


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Lavender’s sweet fragrance attracts pollinators like butterflies and bees, which benefits sage and enhances the garden’s aesthetics. Lavender’s drought tolerance complements sage’s similar water needs, making them low-maintenance companions.

Lavender’s ability to reflect sunlight helps maintain optimal soil temperatures for sage growth. Moreover, the essential oils from lavender can strengthen the flavors of nearby herbs, including sage.


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Sage helps protect kale by repelling common pests like cabbage moths and flies. The larger kale plants provide shade, creating a cooler root environment for sage during the peak of summer.

Both plants prefer well-draining soil; planting them together ensures that their water and nutrient needs are met without competition. Kale can also be a trap crop, drawing pests away from sage and nearby plants.


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Lettuce benefits from the shade provided by mature sage plants, which helps protect it from the summer heat and prevents bolting. Sage’s ability to repel common pests like aphids, slugs, and snails protects young lettuce plants, making them thrive.

The light requirements of lettuce make it an ideal underplanting for sage, utilizing garden space efficiently. Additionally, the nitrogen-rich soil left by harvested lettuce benefits sage, enriching its growth.


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Arugula, another brassica, works well with sage to deter cabbage moths. Sage’s shade protects arugula’s shallow roots, keeping the soil cool and moist. Sage’s antimicrobial properties enhance the flavor of arugula, making it more robust. Arugula also acts as green manure, enriching the soil around sage when it decomposes.

Plants to Avoid Planting with Sage

When planning your garden, it’s crucial to consider what not to plant alongside sage and what makes good companion plants. Some plant pairings can inhibit sage’s growth, negatively affect other plants, or even worsen their flavor profiles. Here are some plants to avoid pairing with sage:


Celery and sage prefer cool, moist soil and compete aggressively for water if planted close together. Sage’s extensive root system can dominate the water supply. Additionally, celery may overshadow the delicate flavor of sage in culinary uses. It’s best to plant these separately for optimal growth.


Ginger and sage should not be planted in the same area. Ginger’s oils can seep into the soil, affecting the production of essential oils in sage leaves. Moreover, ginger’s need for a moist, tropical environment clashes with sage’s requirement for well-drained soil, making them incompatible.


Planting onions and sage together can reduce yields for both. Onion roots release a sulfur compound that inhibits growth and can impart an undesirable onion-like flavor to sage leaves, which is generally unwelcome in cooking. Keep onions and sage apart for better productivity.


Cucumbers’ and sage’s vastly different growth needs make them poor garden companions. Cucumber vines can easily overwhelm sage, and their preference for abundant moisture doesn’t suit the drier conditions sage thrives in. Avoid this pairing to prevent one plant from hindering the other.


Despite their similar foliage, avoid planting sage near rue. Rue prefers shade and emits oils that can stifle the growth of nearby plants, including sage. Rue tends to dominate its space, substantially reducing sage’s productivity. Keep a good distance between them.


Basil and sage should not share the same garden space. Basil’s rapid growth enables it to monopolize sunlight, soil nutrients, and water, all essential for sage. Basil’s extensive root system can also restrict the development of sage roots. It’s best not to plant these herbs together.

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