Perfect Plants for your Planting Zone 3-10

By: Lively Root
April 16, 2021
Perfect Plants for your Planting Zone 3-10
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Each plant has a native area that it initially grows. Plant geeks and explorers search out these plants and relocate them to other locations for our enjoyment and discovery. Before buying a plant and placing it outside, it's best to understand your plant hardiness zone. The U.S. Department of Agriculture classifies the country into hardiness zones 1 through 12, based on the diverse regions' wintertime temperatures. We will concentrate on the continental U.S. zones 3-10 to explain which plants are suitable for your outside area. Of course, many of our plants are tropicals and can be brought indoors in the wintertime when the weather cools. So you have double-duty plants for indoors or outdoor plantings! 

Before planting annuals or topicals out of your zone, study the frost dates in your area (temperatures will dip to 32°F or below). To do this, go to the Old Farmer's Almanac site and type in your zip code. They make it easy and tell you when your last spring frost date and the first fall frost occurs in your area. These dates would be on average. This is all based on historical data, so look at long-term forecasts in your area too. You may be taking a chance if you plant too soon in the spring or bring your plants on the porch in too late in the fall. So be aware and set a reminder for yourself so there are no casualties! 

Zone 10

If you live in Zone 10, lucky you because you have the mildest winters and long summers to enjoy various tropicals in the continental U.S.! It's a rare day to have frost in your planting zone. If so, it lasts only a couple of weeks, occasionally in mid to late December, and may dip down to 31° to 40°F. 


Plants such as Cannas, Amaryllis, Elephant ears, Snake plants, Aloe vera, Air plants, Bird of Paradise, Crotons, Christmas Cactus, Gardenias, Jade plants, Jasmine, Peace lilies, Fabian Aralia Stump, Flamingo Flower, Golden Pothos, Bromeliads, Kalanchoe, Calandiva, Money Tree, Peacock Plant, Pineapple Plant, China Doll, Dracaena, Ficus altissima, Elephant Ear 'Regal Shields,' Chinese Evergreen, White Stripe Dragon Tree, Umbrella Tree, Dieffenbachia, ZZ plant, Chinese Money Plant, Ficus benjamina, Kangaroo Paw, Burgundy Rubber Tree, Ponytail Palms, Rosemary, Lemon Button Fern, Pink Polka Dot Plant, Neanthe Bella Palm, Swiss Cheese Monstera, Sweetheart Vine, Hawaiian Ti Plant, String of Pearls, Zebra Plant, Red Banana Tree, Heart Leaf Fern, Alocasia Polly, Birds Nest Fern, Split Leaf Philodendron, Good Luck Plant, and succulents will thrive happily in your landscape!  

Cities that enjoy this planting zone include Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, and Tampa. 

Zone 9

In Zone 9, the growing season extends from early February until mid-December, and that's plenty of time to enjoy the abundance of greenery and flora to paint your garden pallet. Temperatures can dip to 21° to 30°F in the coldest months. 


Your green pallet can include several succulents, including echeveria, Crotons, English ivy, Fiddle Leaf Fig, Split Leaf Philodendron, ZZ plant, Mirror Plant, Snake Plant, Philodendron Lemon Lime, Ficus Ginseng, Firecracker Flower, Sago Palm, Yucca Cane, Pygmy Date Palm, Boston Fern, Musa 'Dwarf Cavendish', Syngonium White Butterfly, Red Siam Chinese Evergreen, Asparagus Fern, Flex lily, New Zealand Flax, Inch Plant, Crimson New Zealand Tea Tree, Coastal Rosemary, Purple Sensation Cordyline, Poinsettia, Elephant Ear Upright, Caladium, Kimberley Queen Fern, Areca Palm, Staghorn Fern.


U.S. cities in Zone 9 include Houston, Las Vegas, San Antonio, Tucson, Orlando, Phoenix, San Francisco, San Jose, Tampa, New Orleans, Baton Rouge, and Tuscaloosa. 

Zone 8

Living in Zone 8 provides a long growing season, with a frost-free period that lasts from early April until late October. Coldest temps dip to 10°-20°F. 


Split Leaf Philodendron, English ivy, Lady Palm, Japanese Aralia, Dwarf Olive, Rosemary, Star Jasmine, Gardenia 'Veitchii', Firescape Dwarf Mat Rush, Tuscan Blue Rosemary, Aloe Vera, Moonlight Fern, Amaryllis, Calla, Superba Double Begonia, Mediterranean Fan Palm are popular plants for your garden spaces. 


U.S. cities in Zone 8 include Atlanta, Baltimore, Charlotte, Dallas, Houston, Memphis, Norfolk, Portland, San Antonio, Savannah, Seattle, Washington, DC, and Jackson. 

Zone 7

Gardening in Zone 7 will give you a medium to an extended growing season, including a frost-free period continuing from early May until late September. 


The English ivy and Lemon Mini Cypress would work well in container gardens, and Canna is incredibly colorful in the landscape. 


U.S. cities within Zone 7 include Albuquerque, Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Memphis, Nashville, New York, Lexington, Washington, DC, Roanoke, Reno, Raleigh, Asheville, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Oklahoma City. 

Zone 6

Gardening outside in Zone 6 will provide a medium-length growing season, with temperatures that dip to -11° to 0°F with a frost-free season that persists from mid-May to late September.


English ivy and the Clover Leaf Ivy make a great spiller in container gardens and adds elegance to any arrangement. Texas Red Yucca can make a lovely architectural sculpture in the garden. 


U.S. cities within Zone 6 include Boston, Buffalo, Charleston, WV, Chicago, Columbus, Detroit, Wichita, Salt Lake City, Kansas City, Louisville, and Providence.

Zone 5

Zone 5 provides a relatively short growing season, with a frost-free season that continues just from early June until early September. The average coldest temps can reach -21° to -10°F. 


Plants like the English ivy, Clover Leaf Ivy, and Texas Red Yucca can survive in the coldest temperatures. 


U.S. cities within Zone 5 are Burlington, Denver, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, Omaha, Pierre, Portland, Lincoln, Lancing, Albany, and Concord. 

Zone 4

Unfortunately, in Zone 4, the growing season is the shortest, with temps that get down to -31° to-20°F amidst a frost-free period lasting from the beginning of June until early September. 


Maidenhair Fern's are perennials in your region and can be grown outside. 


Cities in zone 4 include Minneapolis, Cheyenne, Des Moines, Madison, Augusta, MA.

Zone 3

Zone 3 is the coolest and smallest of the zones, including a frost-free growing season that remains only from June until September. The temps can reach frigid temps of -45° to -30°F. 


Maidenhair Fern's are perennials in your region and can be grown outside. 


A major city in Zone 3 is Grand Rapids, Minnesota.