July 13, 2022

Trap Crop - noun

Definition: A type of crop grown to distract, lure, or prevent pests from attacking higher value crops.

Trap Crops in the Forest Garden:

While pests can be extremely destructive in the Forest Garden, they won’t just eat anything and everything. Most pests have favorite crops that they like to feed on, live on, or reproduce from. To naturally protect higher value crops, Forest Garden farmers can grow plants that may have little to no additional value but are favored by specific pests. These trap crops will ‘pull’ those pests away from their higher value crops.

One of the most popular trap crops used by Forest Gardeners are marigolds (pictured above). Farmers will choose to plant tomatoes and marigolds together, drawing pests like whiteflies to the marigold instead of the tomato, minimizing the damage to the farmer’s principal harvest.  

Want to learn more about agroforestry? Sign up for our FGTC newsletter here. Plus, join our FGTC Facebook Group to get connected with a global community of agroforesters.