Proven Winners Direct™ Zone Guide: Zone 4

Zone 4 has long, warm days in the summer and temperatures that average an annual low of -20 to -30°F in the winter. Gardeners in this zone may have a shorter growing season, but they still have a plethora of plants available to them that can thrive year after year. The weather is known to fluctuate in this zone, resulting in atypical patterns and unexpected changes. However, plants that are native to the area and able to grow as a perennial can withstand these changes. Zone 4 climates can be found in the northern United States from Maine all the way to Montana and Idaho, but can also be found in the northern mountain regions of New Mexico. 

Happening about two weeks later than zone 3, the last frost date of the spring season typically happens anywhere from mid May to early June. The first frost date can happen about 110 days later, landing sometime within mid September to early October. 

Like any zone, frost dates will vary slightly from year to year. It’s important to check the Old Farmer’s Almanac for more accurate weather predictions for the current year.

Below are a few varieties that we happily recommend for zone 4 planting!

  • Color Coded® ‘Frankly Scarlet’ Coneflower is a highly noticeable, low to the ground flower that’ll bloom all season long. It resists deer and attracts pollinators, meaning that your garden will be getting the right kind of attention!

  • The ‘Viva Polonia’ Clematis features pink-red flowers that bloom with a bright white star in the center. A long bloomer, it’s ideal for any area that needs color with clinging and trailing action. Perfect for sprucing up fences!

  • Dolce® ‘Cherry Truffles’ Coral Bells is a heuchera with a gorgeous leaf pattern and endless supply of interesting color. The brown, reddish foliage is a great choice for highlighting areas of the garden with pops of unusual color.

Annuals are always a fantastic way to expand your choice of plants, and you can try new varieties each year. If they’re planted between frost dates, most should fair just fine for the length of the growing season. However, it’s always important to consider your particular garden conditions. Hours of sunlight, soil conditions, and other factors will greatly impact how a plant preforms. 

For a complete list of plants that are suitable for zone 4, click here! If you’d like to learn more about gardening zones in general then be sure to check out our blog The Ultimate Guide to Plant Hardiness Zones.

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