It doesn't matter if you're a beginner or a pro gardener, knowing what goes where in the garden means you're one step closer to a successful crop.

Compatible gardening means placing plants that are beneficial to each other's growth close together, and distancing those plants that are a hindrance. So, the first step is to find out which plants help each other.

The most common vegetables

The most common combination of vegetables are corn, squash and beans, also known as the three sisters. When these three are planted together, there are several benefits. The tall stalks of corn act as poles for the bean plants. The beans provide extra nitrogen to the needy corn, and the squash plants spread out across the ground where their large leaves create shade and prohibit the growth of weeds. In general, beans get along well with most plants in the garden except for garlic, peppers and onions.

Cruciferous vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables are another popular pick for the garden. But even though they're in the same family, they don't all get along with each other. If you are planting broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower, keep them all separate. They do work well with potatoes and onions though.

Tomatoes, cucumbers, potatoes & onions

Tomatoes and cucumbers should be in every garden, even in tough to grow areas like zones 3 and 4. Place the cucumbers between the broccoli and cauliflower and they'll all be happy. Plant your tomatoes close to carrots with some basil plants in between each one and they'll flourish. Pepper plants go well with tomatoes and basil too.

No garden would be complete without potatoes and onions. These two complement each other, but potatoes don't grow well with cucumbers, tomatoes or squash.

Planning a garden is almost as much fun as cultivating one. Take time to think about where you will place your different vegetables, draw out a plan and hang on to it so you can rotate your crops next year and get the most from your soil.