Understanding Hardiness Zones, Frost Dates and Microclimates in the Garden, #118


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By Maria Failla- Plant Lady and Host of Bloom and Grow Radio, Maria Failla- Plant Lady, Host of Bloom, and Grow Radio. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

I’ve always known that Hardiness Zones and Frost Dates are important to planning your outdoor garden… but plant friend, I’ve never quite understood what they were or why they were so important. I’ve gotten as far as typing my zip code into the hardiness zone website, getting my “number” and then pretty much not doing anything with it. As I look to plan my first grown up garden this summer, I knew I needed help, so I asked Rochelle Greayer, of the renowned garden design website Pith & Vigor, who has years of garden design under her belt to help break all of these important concepts down for us, to better understand our outdoor environments. So many lightbulb moments in this episode let's dive right in.

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In this episode we learn:

  • [04:46] What Maria has in store for fellow novice gardeners like her this summer!
  • [05:40] How Rochelle went from flying aircraft and satellites to a full-time garden designer
  • [08:34] What Rochelle loves about garden design—and Maria’s luxury spa biophilic experience
  • [10:00] The many careers you can get into if you want to pursue a plant profession
  • [11:26] Do plants really clean the air in your apartment? Maria discusses this hot topic circulating in the plant community
  • [13:10] The topics that Maria wants to understand about outdoor gardens
  • [13:49] What are hardiness zones? What are the pros and cons of the USDA Hardiness Zones?
  • [17:23] The difference between the USDA hardiness zones and the American Horticultural Society (AHS) Heat Zones
  • [18:39] What does a plant’s hardiness mean?
  • [19:20] Once you know your hardiness zone, how do you apply that information to your outdoor garden?
  • [21:11] Does hardiness matter for annual plants?
  • [21:58] How do frost dates differ from hardiness zones? What are frost dates actually for?
  • [23:10] Why it is important to know frost dates—beware of last frost!
  • [25:54] What’s more important between hardiness zone and frost dates?
  • [26:25] The best seeds, soil, and fertilizers for your indoor and outdoor garden this season!
  • [29:48] How to plan your garden with your hardiness zone and frost dates information
  • [31:02] Frost date hack: you can extend your growing season inside!
  • [32:31] Understanding how a plant supports itself during growing season
  • [35:06] What are the Sunset climate zones?
  • [36:58] Listener question #1: How much does microclimate affect your predicted garden zones? What is a microclimate?
  • [39:31] How do you know if you have a microclimate in the garden?
  • [41:06] Listener question #2: What methods can be used to push gardening zones, if a plant is hardy just outside your gardening zone?
  • [41:43] Why it’s important to pay attention to the environments in your garden
  • [44:44] Listener question #3: Have the zones changed because of climate change?
  • [46:49] Rochelle’s favorite piece of advice for those who want to try out garden design
  • [48:57] Rochelle’s gardening course for homeowners looking into improving their gardens
  • [50:26] The cool history behind Pith + Vigor’s name
  • [53:23] Maria’s plans for this seed season and how she’s applied this conversation to her garden planning

Mentioned in our conversation:

Thank you to our episode sponsor:

Territorial Seed Company

Thank you Territorial Seed Co for sponsoring today's episode! Territorial Seed Co provides high quality seeds and plants (over 2000 varieties) that are tried and tested on their 75 acre farm and have a ton of fall varieties for us to try! It's already time to start planning your 2021 garden! For seeds, plants, online garden planner, how to videos and more visit TerritorialSeed.com and use code BLOOM10 for 10% off.

Espoma Organic

Espoma Organics: for responsibly made, fabulous indoor and outdoor organic soils, fertilizers, pest control sprays and more visit espoma.com to find your local dealer or check out my amazon storefront of my favorite Espoma products here.

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131 episodes