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WINTER HARDINESS ZONES
Some plants and trees are hardier than others, being able to survive in the deep freeze of the north. The further north you live, the shorter the growing season will be. Much of the U.S.A. falls within Hardiness Zones 5, 6, 7, and 8.
If a plant or tree will survive in Zone 5, it might survive several hundred miles further south. The opposite is not necessarily true. Plants that grow well in Arkansas and northern Texas might be way too tender to grow where winters get down to 20 or more degrees below zero.
However, if a catalog says a plant will survive in Zone 5 winters, some of them will actually survive to only 5 or 10 degrees below zero, while others will live through 25 or even 35 degrees below zero temperatures.
NOTE: The temperature itself is more important than the Zone Number.
NEVER “PUSH” A PLANTING ZONE
Many people are encouraged to try to “push” the planting zone by one zone. (Take my advice: DON’T!)
RELATED ARTICLE: IS YOUR TREE READY FOR WINTER?
In other words, they suggest that you try to grow a plant or tree that is said to only survive as far north as Zone 5 in the even colder Zone 4, just to see if it will work. They claim many people have had success with this method. I have fallen for this myself, so don’t feel bad if it’s already happened to you.
But before you buy a plant or tree, ask yourself: Just how thrilled would you be if you had to dig a peach tree out by the roots if your experiment doesn’t work?
Before you can plant something else in its place, you will have to eradicate the roots from the ground. Spending days trying to dig around roots, scoop the crumbling dirt out of the hole, and painstakingly chop chop the roots loose from the soil is no fun whatsoever. The only thing I can say for it is its real good exercise.
RELATED ARTICLE: CHOOSING THE PERFECT FRUIT TREE
MAKE SURE OF YOUR HARDINESS ZONE
There are 13 USDA Plant Hardiness Zones in the United States. It is sometimes hard to determine from the map exactly where your property falls within them. Call the greenhouse to make sure you picked the right variety of plant for the area you live in.
Nothing will make you more heartsick than having to dig up and dispose of a full grown bush or tree when you realize it just won’t produce fruit in your area.
HAPPY PLANTING! Susan
For more in-depth information on GROWING YOUR OWN FRUIT