2012 USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

Posted by on February 22, 2012

Pic: 2012 USDA Plant Hardiness Zone

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently updated its Plant Hardiness Zone Map.

What’s a plant hardiness zone? It’s a zone based on the “average annual extreme minimum temperature during a 30-year period in the past” and helps gardeners determine whether a plant has a chance to thrive in that zone. The 2012 map is more finely tuned than past maps were. Still, don’t expect your town’s zones to apply everywhere in town. Every place has microclimates whose conditions are affected by water, pavement, sunlight, shade, and buildings.

In the United States, most seed packets will indicate that plant’s optimal hardiness zone. You can find out which zone you’re in here and read more about zones and how to use them here.

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