Hardiness Zones, it’s getting Warmer.

The new hardiness Zone map from Arborday.org:

I have seen other Blogs discuss this issue, but I couldn’t let it pass by without chiming in.

After 30 yrs working in outdoor environments I can safely say things have changed. Definitely changed and who knows if it is for the better. Now here comes a map from the folks at Arbor Day to show those changes.

Now are these changes long-lasting and final? Who really knows. How long have we been keeping records? Real, complete records. 120 years, 150 years? What if we are in a 300, 700, 1,553 year cycle? How about 4,000 year cycle? In another 150 years maybe we’ll have Magnolia grandiflora along Lake Erie.

The worst case scenario . . . Global Warming; that it’s real, it’s happening, and changes will occur. Changes that we cannot stop. Good or bad changes that will effect how humans live on this planet. How humans will co-exist with animals and plants, and the dynamics in play will also change.

So what dies this mean here today? Right here, right now.

Well we get to grow stuff we couldn’t grow before, and stuff we didn’t want to grow, or run rampant will be allowed to, or continue to happen. Like it or not. We will have to take the bad with the good.

So celebrate, but remain vigilant. For me . . . the biggest news in all this change is the affect on poison ivy. Poison ivy (the plant, not Uma Thurman) will benefit by the longer/warmer growing season . . . great. I’m sure folks who deal with kudza/kudzoo(sp?) are happy. The lengthier season will also benefit “fire ants”.

Fire ants, nasty fellows-I’m waiting for Jack Bauer to find a way to use them as a torture device. We sure don’t need to have their territory expand, but this will most likely happen.

Enjoy your new growing season.

Categorized as nature

By Rick Anderson

The Whispering Crane Institute was originally formed to act as the umbrella organization for the Philosophy of Design Symposium, and other seminars and workshops given by Rick Anderson and Richard L. Dube’. In the year 2000 WCI became a sole proprietorship owned by Rick Anderson. Today the WCI provides design and consultation services for Landscape Contractors, acts as a Green Industry think tank, and provides training for others in the form of workshops, seminars, and individual consulting. The WCI also provides written material, opinions, case-studies and how-to articles for industry trade magazines.


  1. Just let your readers know that this is a NEW zone map put out by the Arborday folks, and not an update of the USDA zone map.

    The USDA folks are updating their zone map as well, but they use numbers taken over a longer period of years, so you won’t see such a dramatic change.

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