|Plant Hardiness Zone Map|
The USDA has collaborated with Oregon State University to produce an updated Plant Hardiness Zone Map -- the first since 1990. According to the USDA's website, the new map features much greater detail than the old version, in part because the map was created using digital or Geographic Information System (GIS) based data combined with a "sophisticated algorithm".
The USDA's upgraded website is more user friendly and well worth a visit. Improvements include:
- Interactive map with zoom and customized terrain adjustment
- Downloadable Plant Hardiness Zone Maps available in several different sizes and resolutions.
- Hardiness zones searchable by zip code, state, and region.
- GIS data downloads (license necessary)
The latest map shows a slight warming trend compared to the 1990 edition. The USDA reports that the new map is generally a half a zone warmer than the earlier version. The USDA has also defined two new hotter zones that didn't exist on the previous map -- zones 12 and 13.
Read more about the new map on the USDA's Plant Hardiness Zone Map website.