Keep Aphids From Ruining Your Zucchini By Growing It Near This Gorgeous Flower

There is nothing quite like picking a fresh zucchini from the garden to make a nice summer meal. Zucchini is an underestimated and easy-to-grow veggie that doesn't require a whole lot of care. As a result, it is a very good starter crop for beginner gardeners. However, like many garden vegetables, it is also prone to pests, including the dreaded aphid. Fortunately, marigolds can be planted near your zucchini as a companion plant that can help deter this annoying insect and serve as natural pest control in your garden.

Like zucchini, marigolds are not a high-maintenance plant and are easy to incorporate into your garden. First off, they come in various sizes to provide a couple of options. You can add dwarf varieties to pots next to your zucchini plants or plant taller varieties of marigolds directly into your garden soil to create a border around and in between them.

Aphids are deterred by marigolds

Because they are so commonly found and can destroy your plants, aphids are the enemy of gardeners. There is nothing more frustrating than finding a group of these tiny green bugs hopping around your garden veggies. They suck the nutrients out of plants, and they multiply quickly, so it's vital to keep them at bay as much as possible. It's also vital to address an aphid problem early on to protect your plants.

Luckily, marigolds can help deter aphids with their strong scent. These colorful orange flowers also attract insects that kill aphids. French marigolds (tagetes patula) in particular have a very strong scent. Even stronger is the Mexican marigold (tagetes erecta), which is also known as the Aztec marigold. Troublesome aphids will steer clear of the Mexican marigold, and that can help protect your nearby zucchini. Besides aphids, marigolds also repel nematodes, cabbage worms, and mosquitoes.

Marigolds attract pollinators

Marigolds aren't just pest deterrents. They can also help your zucchini blossom because they attract pollinators to your garden. Their fragrant blooms attract bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects. With their brightly colored orange and yellow flowers, marigolds are among the best flowers for attracting bees to your yard. The presence of insects such as bees aids in the proper pollination of your zucchini flowers. Zucchini cannot self-pollinate and relies on garden pollinators like bumble bees. All of these factors can help strengthen your garden as a whole and lead to a strong and bountiful zucchini harvest.

Of course, because they attract pollinators, marigolds also serve every plant and vegetable in your garden. Essentially, a thriving garden works to create a healthy mini-ecosystem in your yard. Marigolds also look vibrant and add color to your vegetable garden, all the while serving as a support system and pest deterrent behind the scenes.