Keeping the focus on Family & Home as a Work at Home Mom.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Plant hardiness zone checkers


Spring is here! Spring is here! It’s the best time of the year! Those of us who love digging in the dirt have been waiting anxiously for planting time. We’ve dreamed of warmer days for months.
We’ve poured over seed catalogs, visited our favorite websites and sketched up our gardens and flower beds and got out our tools. Some of us who got warm weather last week have even bought some plants in preparation for our gardening season.

But wait! Don’t plant just yet. The USDA changed hardiness zones last year. Now is the time to double check your number.

map
Courtesy: USDA

2012 USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map is the standard by which gardeners and growers can determine which plants are most likely to thrive at a location. The map is based on the average annual minimum winter temperature, divided into 10-degree F zones. 

It's easy to check your zone: go HERE, type in your zip code and/or state to see your personalized map. This site puts my hardiness zone as a 7 as seen on the above map.




Better Homes and Gardens (my second bible) has in depth gardening by region information as well. Go HERE to find out what they say your planting zone is and get a free personalized garden plan by going HERE.

 This site puts me in a zone 6.

What does this mean to me? I’m going to follow both guidelines and ask lots of questions at my local nursery if I fall in love with a plant I have not personally worked with before.


What plants are you looking forward to growing this year? My yen this year is Hollyhocks, Sunflowers. My new addition, which according to my ever helpful Better Homes and Gardens regional planting guide says will grow splendidly here, is Fleabane


flowers
Courtesy: B.H.G.com

Fleabane Description and growing Information:

This tall wildflower produces tiny, daisy-like flowers in great clouds in late summer into early fall. It is often mistaken for an aster, but is easier to grow and isn't plagued by fungal problems. Plants start blooming in midsummer and often continue blooming until fall. The native forms are seldom grown in the garden because they can be weedy, though they're great for naturalized areas and prairie or meadow plantings. However, many well-behaved, beautiful hybrids are available. All are beautiful when cut in big sprays and arranged in a vase.

Light:
Sun

Zones:
3-9

Plant Type:
Perennial

Plant Height:
18-30 inches tall

Plant Width:
18-24 inches wide

Landscape Uses:
Containers,Beds & Borders

Special Features:
Flowers, Cut Flowers, Attracts Butterflies, Drought Tolerant, Easy to Grow


Isn't Fleabane pretty? 

If you have had experience with this plant, please let me know in the comments and happy spring!





16 comments:

moo77hb said...

Thanks for the heads up-I had no idea that they changed these! Can't wait for it to warm up here:)

ginabad said...

Wow, interesting! With my brown thumb and my removed topsoil, it's hard to make anything grow in my yard, but I'd love to. Maybe this guide will help!
gina b

Jennifer Van Huss said...

I love gardening but I'm totally clueless! Thank you for this info! I need it!

Anna at Mama Writes said...

My MIL would love these as she works a lot in the garden!

Amanda Sikes said...

I am a vegetable gardener and I can't wait to grow my tomatoes and cucumbers. I am already looking forward to them!

Jamie Tomkins said...

I sure wish I could find our exact info. The different garden books call us all different zones and being in the mountains, it's not easy!! Great post!!

Marie, shiny pearl said...

Our spring is still white lol...but I planted some - not planted, I used a glass vase, some glass stones and a bulb and made them grow inside our home :) fun! Have fun in your garden!

Maria said...

interesting!! I'm going to start working on my planting son!!

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Heidi,

You are welcome, glad this post will help you prep for spring. I think we are all very ready for it's true arrival!

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Gina,

I hope you can use the links here to find an easy care plant to try.

If you like houseplants, try a Pothos. They are so easy to grow. No your brown thumb won't kill it. ;) This plant can forgive weeks of neglect!

Thanks for stopping by.

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Jennifer,

So glad this post was helpful. I am always learning and trying new plants in my yard- garden. The fun thing about gardening is it is trial and error as we learn our own soil and zones.

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Anna,

Please feel free to share with your Mother in law.

Thanks for visiting!

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Amanda,

Yum, my mouth actually watered as I read your comment because I love tomatoes right off the vine. I've never grown cucumbers, but I just may now that you've got me thinking about them. :-)

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Marie,

Oh I love forcing bulbs inside. I didn't do it this year, but I did this with paperwhites last year.
I'd love to see what you've grown, so stop back by and share a link to a picture.

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Maria,

I bet you have a long growing season in your neck of the woods!

Thanks for stopping by.

Linda Kinsman said...

Hi Jamie,

I can completely relate! That's why I decided to share some helpful links so we gardeners can get a better idea of what is going to work in our region. You wouldn't think there would be different hardiness zone numbers. I bet you'll shoot for the middle like I have too.
Thanks for stopping by!