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Planting guides
#1
Hello All,

I am wondering what resources or books there are that cover what specific crops go well together in polyculture systems i.e. Three Sisters, but what plants next to tomatoes kind of thing.? Are there guides by hardiness zone or type of crop? Which plants bring the beneficial insects? Which plants are great soil builders? 
-Thomas M.
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#2
(02-14-2022, 04:32 PM)TMartineau Wrote: Hello All,

I am wondering what resources or books there are that cover what specific crops go well together in polyculture systems i.e. Three Sisters, but what plants next to tomatoes kind of thing.? Are there guides by hardiness zone or type of crop? Which plants bring the beneficial insects? Which plants are great soil builders? 
-Thomas M.

I haven't combed through these for accuracy and relevance, but it might answer some of your questions about companion plants.    I know Seminole Pumpkin likes to grow up trees.  Okinawa Spinach likes to grow under Cassava and Beautyberry in my yard.  Mexican sunflower and comfrey add nutrients to soil.  Live oak leaves are the main soil builder in my yard.  Comfrey and nettles adore living under a huge oak tree.  Spanish needle, firebush, milkweed, passionflower and chaya bring loads of butterflies to my yard.  Motherwort brings lots of bumblebees.  I think I learned that bees are attracted to blue, purple and white flowers.   
https://deepgreenpermaculture.com/2009/0...ing-table/ 
https://www.permaculturenews.org/2011/12...and-chart/
https://www.permaculturenews.org/2010/07...ing-guide/

-Camille
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#3
(02-14-2022, 04:32 PM)TMartineau Wrote: Hello All,

I am wondering what resources or books there are that cover what specific crops go well together in polyculture systems i.e. Three Sisters, but what plants next to tomatoes kind of thing.? Are there guides by hardiness zone or type of crop? Which plants bring the beneficial insects? Which plants are great soil builders? 
-Thomas M.

Thanks for this question! This could use a lot more work. This isn't well documented anywhere that I know of. In temperate zones, the book Edible Forest Gardens by Dave Jacke and Eric Toensmeier has a very useful chart in the back with some of this info.

A really excellent resource (my favorite) is pfaf.org, a relational database with lots of choices that can answer these questions and help you find the perfect plant for a specific niche.

A lot of research still needs to be done on this topic. It isn't well funded and there is so much more that we could know.

Another great resource are the agroforestry journals and websites. They've done some research on polycrops suitable with tree crops.
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#4
Forgot to mention that we include a plant list in your course materials that has many suggestions for nitrogen fixers, mineral accumulators, chop and drop, frost tolerant, etc, types of plants for Florida and some lists for temperate areas as well.

Eric Toensmeier's Perennial Vegetables is an excellent resource for specific niche plants as well.
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