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Expert gardener shares how ancient planting technique can prevent pests from devouring plants: 'Slugs and the snails love eating the fresh fruit'

"I'm trying this immediately!"

"I'm trying this immediately!"

Photo Credit: TikTok

Having a companion makes life better and easier in many ways, and it turns out the same goes for plants. TikToker Joshua Meekins (@the_garden_is_growing), who touts "all things gardening," showcases this fact in an informative video about, you may have guessed it, companion planting

The scoop 

Companion planting is an ancient technique. While there are many versions of it, in his video, Joshua shares how to employ the tactic specifically with onions and strawberries. 

@the_garden_is_growing The strawberries will grow and take over the bed, but not before the onions are ready for harvest. If you have an established strawberry bed try planting a border of onions! #gardening #homesteading #growyourownfood #onions #strawberries #companionplanting ♬ original sound - Joshua Meekins TGIG

"Onions planted among strawberries? That's insanity. Or is it?" Joshua says as the video begins. 

As he works in his raised bed, he makes a joke, saying the reason ogres like onions is that the smell keeps pretty people away. He explains: "Slugs, snails, rabbits, groundhogs, deer, they're all similar. They don't like the smell of onions, and it can have a deterring effect."

He details that he planted the strawberries first, then the onions, and is now finally getting to adding mulch. 

"The straw will keep weeds down, keep moisture in, keep the fruit off of the dirt so it won't rot as fast. Plus, what are strawberries without straw?" he says.

"... I hope you can spend some time in your garden today experimenting with companion planting."

How it's helping 

Gardening, whether at home or in a community garden, has many benefits, including increased physical activity and decreased stress and anxiety levels. 

Growing your own food is also a great way to save money, reduce food waste, and avoid the toxic pesticides and plastic packaging often used with store-bought fruits and veggies, all while decreasing the demand for mass-produced, globally shipped produce.

These benefits can be dampened, however, if you don't get to enjoy any of your harvest. 

"And if you know anything about strawberries," Joshua says, "slugs and the snails love eating the fresh fruit, often before we can get to it."

At least if you do lose some bounty, you can compost it and return it to the garden soil as nutrients for another try. 

What everyone's saying 

Viewers filled the video's comment section with praise for the practice and tutorial as well as questions.

"But do the strawberries taste like onions?" one user asked, to which Joshua replied, "It shouldn't have any negative effect on taste!"

"This makes so much sense considering every year my onions are the only things not touched by moles/slugs or birds!" another said. "I'm trying this immediately! Thank you!"

"Companion planting is just smart," a third stated simply.

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