11 Flowers And Vegetables To Plant With Your Sweet Peas

trio of white, purple, and pink sweet peas

Companion planting with sweet peas is a beautiful way to add fragrance and diversity to your garden. Sweet peas are vining plants that perform best on a trellis, so plant them alongside climbers like clematis or honeysuckle. Their delicate blooms have a wonderful scent, making fabulous cut flowers throughout their flowering period.

The beautiful flowers can add a splash of beauty and charm to a vegetable bed or a contrast to other flowers as a backdrop or an accent.

It is vital to note that, while sweet peas are legumes like garden peas, their seed pods are toxic and are not edible. Despite their toxicity, sweet peas provide excellent nourishment for other plants by adding nitrogen to the soil.

I talk more about companion planting in this episode of my podcast, Organic Gardening For Beginners, if you’d like to dig a little deeper into the concept. It’s one of my favorite gardening methods to use.

But now back to sweet peas…

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Companion planting sweet peas with vining flowers

Sweet peas will happily share their trellis with other climbing flowers, and the results of this can be breathtakingly beautiful. Like a living bouquet in your garden, blooms intertwining and scents mingling will be as stunning to smell as to look at.

1. Clematis

These two beautiful climbers are ideal companions in a flower garden. The large clematis blooms will pop against the backdrop of numerous, smaller sweet pea blooms. The sweet peas will race ahead of your clematis, filling the trellis while the clematis makes its way up, filling the space beautifully while waiting for its companion.

2. Climbing rose

Sweet peas can easily share their trellis with climbing roses, and what a beautiful combination of flowers and scents they’ll bring to your garden space.

The beauty of this combination is that your flowers won’t be limited to your garden. Most varieties of English rose make excellent cut flowers and, when combined with the long stems of your delicate sweet peas, will be as beautiful in your home as in your garden.

3. Jasmine

One of the most stunningly scented climbers is the evening jasmine. Like the sweet pea, it’s another flower with a powerful scent. The sweet peas will give off their scent all day, and jasmine will take over in the evenings. This beautiful combination will fill your garden with fragrance night and day.

Companion planting sweet peas with non-vining flowers

Sweet peas can create a stunning backdrop to smaller plants. Their dazzling heights and blanket of blooms will draw the eye and attract attention to your smaller plants. Their height can also be super helpful in providing shade for plants that need it. Remember that your sweet peas must be trellised when planted with smaller plants or shrubs to prevent them from overrunning their companions.

4. Calendula

Another spring flower that performs best in cooler weather, calendulas are another great addition to sweet pea beds. The orange and yellow calendula flowers will contrast beautifully with the red and burgundy shades of many sweet pea varieties, creating a fun effect.

two yellow calendula flowers
The pale yellow flowers of calendula pair perfectly with a white, pink, or lavender sweet pea bloom.

5. Pansies

These lovely blooms are the perfect size to nestle into the base of your sweet peas. Pansies perform best in cool weather, as do sweet peas, so this is an excellent companionship for spring planting. You could also try violas, which resemble pansies but have smaller blooms in vibrant purple hues.

Additionally, the foliage of pansies can provide a handy groundcover to help keep weeds at bay and maintain moisture in the soil.

As a bonus, calendulas are a trap crop, so if you have had problems with aphids on your sweet peas in the past, this might be a helpful companion for you. The aphids should stick to the calendulas and leave your sweet peas alone, helping you have healthy plants.

6. Sweet Alyssum

The pretty, delicate blooms of sweet alyssum will grow happily around the base of your trellis sweet peas. Available in gentle shades of whites and purples, the colors are as complementary to each other as the plants themselves.

This alyssum is interplanted with vegetables, but it has the same potential with sweet peas.

The flowers of the sweet alyssum will attract bees and other pollinators to your garden, which is excellent for the health of your plants. The fragrance of the sweet alyssum is also quite gentle, so this is another great companion if you’re looking to create a scented garden.

Companion planting sweet peas with vegetables

Sweet peas make fantastic companions for many vegetables. Like all legumes, they add nitrogen to the soil, a much-needed nutrient for many types of plants. They also have extensive root systems, which can help to break up compacted soil and help aerate the ground for the roots of other plants.

However, if you’re planting sweet peas with edible crops, it is vitally important to familiarize yourself with the appearance of sweet pea seed pods so you don’t accidentally pick and eat them. The sweet pea seed pod is toxic and must not be eaten, but this doesn’t take away from its benefits as a companion to other legumes.

7. Runner beans

Runner beans will happily share a trellis with sweet peas. The two plants will twine their way up the trellis, creating a beautiful living screen. Both are vigorous growers, so make sure you give them plenty of space.

Runner beans produce scarlet blooms along the vines, which are a stunning addition to the garden, and they also have an abundance of beans for fresh eating, though this isn’t typically the primary goal of growing runner beans.

8. Pole beans

Green beans, also known as pole beans, are another climbing legume that will make a great companion for sweet peas. Pole beans are grown for fresh bean pods from small white blossoms along the vine.

As with all edible crops, be sure to pick the long, round bean pods and not the shorter pea pods to be safe.

9. Cucumbers

Cucumbers are a fun companion for sweet peas as they can also be trellised. Cucumbers need full sun and warm weather, so you’ll have to stagger your plantings a bit.

You’ll need to plant the sweet peas earlier in the season than cucumbers because the flowers will need cooler conditions to establish themselves. Once the weather has warmed and the risk of frost has passed, the sweet peas should be at least 12 inches tall. That’s the time to plant a few cucumber seedlings at the base of the trellis.

10. Lettuce

Lettuce is a great cool-weather crop that can be planted in early spring, making it the perfect companion for sweet peas. Lettuce grows best in shady areas, so it can provide ground cover for your sweet pea plants and help to keep them cooler in hot weather.

Additionally, lettuce is a shallow-rooted crop, so it won’t compete with sweet peas for root space or nutrients deep in the soil.

11. Spinach

Similar to lettuce, spinach is a great springtime crop that can be planted as a companion to sweet peas. It, too, has shallow roots and prefers cooler weather, so it’s a perfect match.

The bonus with spinach is that it’s a fast-growing crop, so you can sow it later in the season and still have a harvest before the sweet peas are ready. This type of companion planting is a great way to get the most out of your garden space. If you don’t like spinach, be sure to try it with other leafy greens!

Ready to take your gardening game to the next level? Check out the Cut Flower Garden Planner today (created by yours truly!) and start planning your dream garden from seed to bloom!

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Learn more about sweet peas

There is no doubt that sweet peas are fabulous companions to many other plants. Whether they’re used to attract pollinators, feed the soil, or just for their beauty, sweet peas’ companionable nature makes them a perfect pairing for almost all growing spaces.

There is little more enjoyable than having your garden and home decorated with the frilly, pastel-colored blooms of sweet peas.

For more about sweet peas, check out these articles:

Is It Too Late to Plant Sweet Peas? (The Tips You Need)

Sweet Peas Not Growing Well? Here’s How To Fix It

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