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Hardiness Zones

Our number one gardening tip – Know your HARDINESS ZONES!

I’m sure all of the gardeners will agree – before adding any perennial to your home or cottage garden, begin with a basic understanding of your garden’s hardiness zones. Discovering this useful tool was an eye-opener for me. It has since become my most important consideration whenever I’m ready to add a new addition to my ever-growing collection of garden plants.

Let’s start then with a suggestion to begin with a bit of research. Find a trusted garden reference guide or an online source to determine your garden’s hardiness zones. I also found great comfort in discussing my plans with my cottage neighbor Barb, whose garden I’ve always admired. She offered wonderful suggestions on what might work based on her years of experience.

If you live in Canada, visit: www.planthardiness.gc.ca

To my American cousins, visit: www.planthardiness.ars.usda.gov

My garden sits within the 3B zone that stretches along much of the Canada-US border in North America. Some areas within my zone are often quite dry, while others average as much as thirty-seven inches of precipitation annually. The growing season within this zone can vary from two to four months. I also discovered that my cottage garden has it’s own microclimate where some marginally hardy plants overwinter successfully. I think the generous snow cover the property receives offers additional protection from the frigid winter temperatures.

It’s also helpful to remember that hardiness zones only address winter temperatures. When sourcing plants within your zone remember to consider other plant essentials like soil, water, sunlight and the high temperatures your plants will be exposed to during the summer months.

I hope this helpful tip inspired you to begin (or continue) your own gardening adventure. Get in the zone, and get gardening!

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