Understanding Hardiness Zones

How Hardiness Zones impact planting and bloom times plus, what they don’t tell you.

The USDA has established a reference map of zones for plant hardiness. The Zones, indicated by colors and numbered Zones, show which areas of the country typically experience similar average annual minimum temperatures. When you buy perennials, trees, and shrubs, you’ll enjoy the most success when you purchase varieties that are indicated for your Zone.

Link here to enter your Zip Code and find your Zone.

The map consists of 13 Zones in the US and represent low temperatures in 10-degree increments. The first Zone is the coldest in average winter temperature and Zone 13 is the warmest. Each product on WaysideGardens.com will provide a range of Zones in which your selected plant will survive the winter.

On the website, Zone information is listed in the product details.

example of Zone information on waysdiegardesn.com

In the catalog, Zones are listed this way (we call it a Z line, the line just above the icons: Z 3 - 8).

example of Zone information in the Wayside catalog

Of course, there are other environmental factors (outside of light requirements and soil profiles) that impact your plants and that you are likely well-acquainted with, chief among those are average frost dates, maximum temperatures, and precipitation amounts.

Access these additional resources to become familiar with the conditions that will impact your garden and to help you select the plants that grow best where you live. Once you’ve gathered your area’s information, please visit us to place your order for perennials, roses, shrubs, trees, and more!

The National Weather Service provides a first and last frost dates calculator

The National Weather Service Regional Min/Max Temperatures and Precipitation Table

Soil testing through your local County Extension Office, for a fee. Find your county office here.

Stick around or come back to shop with us! You can reserve plants at Wayside Gardens any time. We ship at the proper time for planting in your area, don’t process payment until shipping, and our products are guaranteed.

Shipping dates by Zone.