Can You Plant Tomatoes And Peppers Together?



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Can You Plant Tomatoes And Peppers Together?

Peppers and tomatoes look amazing when they’re planted in a vegetable garden.

Many gardening enthusiasts can be tempted to plant a few more tomato plants in their garden but become swamped by a plentiful harvest some months later.

Plenty of information is available on cultivating each plant separately, but there’s mixed advice on whether you can or can’t grow peppers and tomatoes together.

Essentially, you can grow peppers and tomatoes in one space, but doing this comes with two minimal risks: the depletion of soil nutrients and a greater chance of crop-specific pests. 

Fortunately, there are things you can do to minimize these risks, which we’ll cover in this post. 

Keep reading to learn how to succeed in planting peppers and tomatoes together!

Planting Peppers & Tomatoes Together

Planting peppers and tomatoes together has a light risk of depleting soil nutrients and a greater chance of crop-specific pests. 

You may also need to consider seed saving and support structures to grow both plants successfully. 

We’ll cover how to minimize these possibilities below.

Managing Pests

Tomatoes and peppers are part of the Solanaceae family, in addition to eggplant, ground cherries, and deadly nightshade.

The Solanaceae class is vulnerable to several types of pets, like armyworms, mosaic viruses, and common examples like leaf miners.

Because of this, gardeners generally advise growing all Solanaceae plants separately, including peppers and tomatoes.

Still, these two crops are stronger than others in the family, so keeping them away from tobacco and potatoes is best.

Two primary elements draw in pests:

  • Sick or stressed crops
  • A big population of target crops

While some pests affect all plants, like aphids, several target particular plant families. 

There’s a greater chance of finding pests in your crops if you grow many plants from the same family.

Crop rotation arrangements advise plants from the same class away from each other to discourage pest infestation.

Despite this, the choice to plant ten pepper plants and five peppers and tomatoes each aren’t that different. You’ll still end up with ten plants from the same plant family. 

Many gardeners successfully plant several crops from the same family in one area. This is because the backyard population isn’t anywhere near the number seen by expert pepper or tomato farmers.

It’s a good idea to divide all plants from the same family, including keeping pepper plants away from one another, to avoid pests. However, the ability to do this will depend on the space in your backyard.

Nutrients In Soil

Plants from a single family usually draw in the same nutrients from the soil. 

The Solanaceae crop family contains heavy-feeding plants, like peppers and tomatoes. These are both known to take many nutrients out of the soil, particularly when they start to produce fruit. 

If many heavy-feeding crops are planted in one location, they can begin to deplete important nutrients from the soil. This can lead to nutrient deficiencies in future plants or throughout the season.

One way of avoiding nutrient deficiencies is by planting heavy feeders well apart from each other and then encircling them with legumes, herbs, and leafy greens.

The shorter roots take up fewer nutrients from the soil, preventing heavy-feeding plants from battling others for nutrients and water.

Remember that separating peppers and tomatoes matters less than placing all Solanaceae crops away from each other. 

Can You Plant Tomatoes And Peppers Together?

This step isn’t that important if you’re just growing a couple of plants.

However, if you’re growing several pepper and tomato plants, the risk of nutrient deficiency is bigger from cultivating them in a single area. 

Solanaceae family plants obtain lots of calcium, potassium, and nitrogen from the soil.

You can improve the soil’s nutrient density by adding compost to the soil during transplant and using excess compost as mulch. 

A popular compost we use is Ribbon Organics OMRI Certified Organic Compost

Eggshells can also improve the soil’s calcium content, but it takes a while to break down sufficiently, allowing the plant roots to absorb the nutrients. 

Rather than place eggshells near your crops, either place them on your compost pile or add them to the soil when the growing season finishes, wherever you want to grow Solanaceae crops in the next year.  

Please see our article on the best pepper fertilizers, where we did an in-depth analysis and guide on the best fertilizers to use for your peppers.

Our Top 3 Pepper Fertilizers

Top Pick

Greenway Biotech Pepper Fertilizer

Greenway Biotech

Quality Ingredients Hydroponics and Soil Use Improves Soil Quality 100% Natural

Tracy’s Choice

Big A Pepper Fertilizer

Big A Peppers

Organic Proprietary Blend Suitable For All Peppers High-solubility Formula ECO Friendly.

Best Value

Miracle Gro Shake n Feed Fertilizer

Miracle-Gro S&F

Natural Ingredients Specially Formulated For Use In the Ground and Containers.

Seed Saving

Soil and pest management is important for maintaining present plants, but gardeners concentrating on seed saving must consider future plants. 

Crops from one family can sometimes cross-pollinate, but this isn’t the case for peppers and tomatoes.

These two kinds of crops need to be separated away from each other to sustain a genetically pure line.

For instance, if you need to grow Black Cherry tomatoes and Purple Cherokee tomatoes, they must be planted 25 feet away to avoid cross-pollinating. This is also the case with peppers.

You have a greater chance of maintaining a pure line the more space is left between plant varieties.

You can still fill this area with different plants instead of leaving it empty, as this can further help avoid cross-pollination. 

This can help with seed saving and pest and soil nutrient management. Solanaceae crops self-pollinate, but breezy conditions can move pollen onto nearby crops. 

The chance of these crossing decreases with the more crops (or other structures) you place between them. 

Support Structures

Tomato plants come in two main varieties: determinate and indeterminate

Determinate plants won’t grow past a particular height or length, but indeterminate ones can continue to grow during the season. 

Pepper plants grow less than tomato plants, but they can start to weigh a lot as they are produced so they may need additional support.

A cage can provide this support and may stop plants from splitting or uprooting.

You may find it easier to manage your garden by keeping determinate and indeterminate tomatoes away from each other and planting peppers away from both varieties.

This won’t influence the health of the plants, but it can stop the vining tomatoes vines from entangling with the determinate peppers and tomatoes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) On

Q: Can tomatoes and peppers be planted together?

A: Yes, tomatoes and peppers can be planted together. Both vegetables are compatible companions as they require similar growing conditions and benefit from each other’s presence.

Planting them together can save space, deter pests, and promote healthy growth due to their complementary characteristics.

Q: Can I grow tomatoes and peppers together in a greenhouse?

A: You can grow tomatoes and peppers in a greenhouse. The controlled environment of a greenhouse can provide optimal growing conditions for both plants.

However, ensuring proper spacing and ventilation is important to prevent overcrowding and disease spread. Regular temperature, humidity, and pest control monitoring are also recommended in a greenhouse setting.

Q: What are the benefits of planting tomatoes and peppers together?

A: Planting tomatoes and peppers together can provide several benefits. They both have similar growth requirements, such as sunlight and water needs. Additionally, peppers can help deter pests that are harmful to tomatoes, while tomatoes can provide shade for the pepper plants.

Final Thoughts

Many examples of plants can’t be planted together, but fortunately, this isn’t the case with tomatoes and peppers.

These two plants can look amazing in your garden and become tasty kitchen ingredients. 

Peppers and tomatoes have similar growing requirements, but spacing them away from each other will prevent the crops from fighting for nutrients and water.

This will also prevent pests from damaging the plants. 

Planting tomatoes and peppers together can be tricky, but you can increase your chances of success by following some of the gardening practices above. 

Further Recommendations:

Video: Companion Planting

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