Well, in case you didn't figure out it after the absence following my last post, I did make it to Florida, although by the time you read this I'll be on my way home. It was a short trip but at this time of year, any bit of sunshine and warmth is welcome.

Speaking of warmth, the USDA has changed the plant hardiness map again. I think the last change was just a couple years ago and there were some rather drastic changes. This is a nice map because you can enter you zip code and get a close-up view of your zone (after you get through an annoying captcha code).

Are you sick of me talking about Monty Don yet? If not, here's my Monty man talking about nurturing the soil and our fellow human beings.

Here's some great advice to consider before buying a rose.

And if you need to be doing some gardening, well Heather has a few suggestions of things you can be doing now.

This is a fascinating interview about willows. I can't say I've ever thought too much of the lowly willow but this has me rethinking that opinion.

And I leave you this Friday with a glimpse of some of the lovely orchids I saw at the Naples Botanical Garden. That lady slipper in particular was absolutely amazing.


  1. Still shows me as 5a but I am mostly looking at Z4 plants these days, at least with trees and shrubs. We've had a lot of cold weather this year with little snow cover which makes such a difference. Olbrich is offering a few willow classes making willow items.

  2. Wow, I'm glad you pointed out there were changes. I moved across my metro area and suddenly I'm in a different zone. It wouldn't have been this way in the past (and 6a to 6b isn't that big of a deal) but I was still surprised.

  3. Okay, now I'm really ready for spring! Gotta check out that new plant zone map. This has been a brutal winter - worried about my camellias.

  4. I love willows but was even more enticed after reading Margaret's post! There is a Tudor I'm thinking about buying and I think a willow tunnel would be perfection with a Tudor style house! Glad you made it to Florida! I'm checking the map now...

  5. I don't think the map itself has changed since the 2012 version, it is just a more user-friendly, ZIP-code searchable file of the 2012 map, and better-suited for broadband internet. I'm curious how the years since 2005 (almost a decade of data now) have changed the zones. (The data used for the 2012 map only includes up through 2005.) I hope we don't have to wait 22 years for the gov't to get around to updating it again! Thanks for the link. -Beth

  6. Those zone maps are so confusing, especially with updates. What a great idea to include zip code searching. That will make it so easy to determine what zone you're actually in.

    Thanks for featuring my February gardening tasks in this article. You're a great blogging buddy!!


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