One of the basic things gardeners need to know is how weather will affect their plants. Use the map of hardiness zones developed by the US Department of Agriculture. Their latest map takes into account what we’ve all noticed: winters are warmer than they used to be!
The USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map is the standard by which gardeners and growers can determine which plants are most likely to thrive at a location. The map is based on the average annual minimum winter temperature, divided into 10-degree F zones.
For the first time, the map is available as an interactive GIS-based map. Users may also simply type in a ZIP Code and find the hardiness zone for that area. Go to planthardiness.ars.usda.gov to find your zone.