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Zone 6 or 7?

Posted by annabelle1979 z7 MA (My Page) on
Sun, Feb 20, 05 at 7:27

I live in Fairhaven (I know; not quite the Cape) and every map I refer to says that I am in Zone 7, but I notice that a lot of people from this region consider themselves Zone 6. Which am I? I'm having an identity crisis.


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

  • Posted by Lee1 z7 Long Island (My Page) on
    Sun, Feb 20, 05 at 12:26

Does this help?


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

Welcome to the South Coast, Annabelle! My garden is about 10 or 15 miles west of you, just across the RI line and within view of the ocean.
I've found that we aren't quite a full zone 7. The test plant for me is the classic crape myrtle which flourishes no further north than Washington DC. (other hybrid crapes do survive here, though.)
It also depends on your microclimate, i.e., what protection your garden areas have against the cold winds, how much sun, mulch etc.
I'd suggest investing your money and time in zone 6 hardy shrubs and perennials (hydrangeas do very well here) and then try out a few tender zone 7 items, but be emotionally prepared to have them not revive after a cold winter.
So join the ranks of the bipolar zoners! - sometimes 6 and sometimes 7.
Carol


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

Thanks for the advice Carol! I shall now consider myself one of the Zone Sixers. I am dying to plant some Nikko Blue Hydrangeas. I am not familiar with crape myrtle; I'll have to look it up.


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

  • Posted by Cady 6b/Sunset34 MA (My Page) on
    Sun, Feb 20, 05 at 16:10

You all sound like you're a prisoner of Zone 6b like me, on the North Shore!

If your temps don't go below 0F, you're Zone 7. If temps can go as low as -5F, it's Zone 6b. To -10F, it's Zone 6a.


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

Hey there - we're neighbors as well! I consider myself in zone 6a/b and always look for plants with that zone noted.
Here in our area - Marion, Mattapoisett, Fairhaven, New Bedford and Dartmouth, MA we are on a "wobbly" line sort to speak,regarding zone. I recommend to always check your tags before purchasing your plants, especially if you're planting perinnials and you should not have a problem. I have never considered "our" region, the Southcoast, to be a zone 7 according to the "zone maps" that I've used. When purchasing plants at our local nurseries as well, they do not refer to this area as zone 7 either. I think if you consider our zone to be 6a/b and you look and purchase plants accordingly you won't be disappointed with plants dying on you when our winters come... and thankfull go!

Good luck - Luvherbz!


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

Thanks for all the info. I guess I would be a 6b. There was one day this winter that the temperature dropped to about 2 degrees. I'll avoid the temptation of zone 7 plants... pretty passiflora....
On the plus side, I bought this house (my first) in November thinking that there was absolutely no landscaping, but yesterday I saw several bulbs attempting to make an appearance. Yay! Then we got snow again today...


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

  • Posted by Cady 6b/Sunset34 MA (My Page) on
    Tue, Feb 22, 05 at 0:17

The sneaking thing about temperatures, is they sometimes go below zero in the wee hours of the morning (2am to 3am is typically the coldest time). Boston had a reading of -7 (F) one night last year. Very untypical (Boston is 6b), but we had a freaky season last winter. We all take a medium risk planting zone 7 plants unless we have warm microclimates (then, heck, take a chance with zone 8 plants...). :)

I've had zone 7 plants do well for years, then get whacked by one nasty winter with a couple nights below 0.


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

It's definitely safer to stay with zone 6 plants on the South Coast. But hey, isn't it fun sometimes to live life (garden life, that is) on the edge? I left my 30" high rosemary in the ground in a protected garden bed SE of a deck for 2 happy winters, but the 3rd winter with one severe set of days, did it in. My big blue hydrangeas flourished and got to be almost 5 ft. tall, until all the fat buds froze, Feb. 2004. We must also deal with hurricanes, cold wet summers and hungry deer. Adventure gardening, I call it!


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

  • Posted by Cady 6b/Sunset34 MA (My Page) on
    Wed, Feb 23, 05 at 22:08

X-Treme Gardening! That's for us. lol


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

yes the zoning always confused me too, especially as our winters get colder every year. I really think I am 6 but when I type my zipcode it comes up 7! But to be on the safe side I usually stick to zone 6. :-)


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

Somehow it just struck me that my pretensions (and others' in this area) of being on the edge of zone 7 is similar to my attempts to claim a size 8 dress and size 5 shoes. In other words, sheer denial and bluster. Or in the words of a writer friend, "all hat and no cattle". I know enough to plant only zone 6 (or below) plants and shrubs, but I like to think my garden can sometimes cross the line, given a mild winter, into the world of zone 7. Fat chance! (Like the dress size....)

Maybe I should change my User name--?


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RE: Zone 6 or 7?

Carol-
I know exactly what you mean! I always pull the smallest shoe size possible off the rack and grudgingly move up until I get something that fits. Makes me feel like one of the wicked stepsisters.
I also wistfully look at the zone 7 plants in the catalogs and think: "Maybe, with enough mulching..."


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