The Night Zone 8 Came Home

Thursday, 9 January 2014, 22:19 | Category : Gardening
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Gardening in central Mississippi is, or can be, close to a year-round endeavor. If you’re willing to endure a bit of cold weather, it’s possible to have something blooming at any time of the year. Pansies, one of the most-poorly named flowers out there, can easily take nights in the mid-20s and keep right on blooming. Snapdragons, not normally considered a winter flower, can take a freeze and roll on. Begonias, surprisingly, while they will die back to the ground, will often come back in th e spring and flourish the next year. Gardeners here have gotten used to having lantana act like a true perennial, coming back year after year. In USDA Zone 9, it is dependably perennial. But here in zone 8, lantana, like some other tender perennials, has come back because we’ve had a series of relatively mild winters. But this past Monday and Tuesday, Zone 8 came home. The USDA says Zone 8 should have low temperatures reaching down the 10 to 15°F, and we hit that Tuesday morning. More than that, we were below 25°F for about 48 hours. There’s going to be a lot of empty spaces in flowerbeds come spring. That’s not a reason to never plant things like lantana, but it is a reason to pay attention to the term “tender perennial”. Be thankful for the years they do come back.

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