Ask a Question forum: Zip code map

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Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Feb 14, 2017 10:09 AM CST
If there is a newer map (2012) in which there have been some changes/ shifts since 1990, why would I want to see the 1990 map??

You make it difficult to get updated info. What's the point?
Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
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Feb 14, 2017 12:34 PM CST


@dave, we have a zip code map somewhere? Confused
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Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
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Feb 14, 2017 12:45 PM CST

Plants Admin

The "Zone Lookup" is located under Tools & Apps. Zone lookup by zip code uses the 1990 map only, however the 2012 map has an enlarged mouse-over function to give you a clear view of you area.
[Last edited by eclayne - Feb 14, 2017 12:47 PM (+)]
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
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Feb 14, 2017 1:05 PM CST Admin

We include both maps in order to provide the most complete experience possible for the visitors to that page.
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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Feb 14, 2017 2:30 PM CST
Hi Joycegodwin, Welcome!

I think some people like to see both the 2009 and 2012 maps to compare the differences from the old to the new map. I don't believe the administration of this site is trying to make it difficult to get updated information at all.

You can find more information regarding the maps and zones, etc. http://planthardiness.ars.usda...

And, this page gives more information about the maps and gardening: http://planthardiness.ars.usda...
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~

Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Feb 14, 2017 8:22 PM CST
I've always used the maps as guesstimates. They get me in the right box. But the boundries of a zip code are not going to be climate boundries. My zip code has elevation changes of a couple thousand feet - the west side is in the mountains and I am on the edge of the valley. The temps are probably 10 degrees colder there than here.

And then there is your own yard's climate. Buildings, fences, mountains, rivers all affect your climate. Are you on a hill top (warmer), hill bottom (colder), flat spot? Look for microclimates within your yard. My backyard is flat but it sits on top of a 10 foot tall rockery wall. It gets east sun so loses the sun about 1pm. But, its very warm compared to the west facing frontyard where there are no hills, or walls (and is also the direction the storms come from). But my front and back yards are both in Zone 6.

What I am attempting to say is that there are no easy answers. You have to figure out what temperature range you are in. According the the "maps", I am in zone 6 but I have a 4 year old chard plant growing on the south side of my house. The minimum temps for chard is about 20 degrees. Don't tell my chard - our low last winter was 7 degrees and the year before that was 5 degrees. This winter, the chard has been buried in a snow bank for most of the season (It doesn't usually snow here).

Never an easy answer... Smiling

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Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
Feb 15, 2017 4:34 AM CST
In general, the climate zones seem to have shifted about 100 miles north in 20 years...

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