Plants for zone 4

A dear friend of mine recently moved from a warm climate on the coast to a cooler climate where the temperature is much lower. Their new home is actually in zone four, and she was having a difficult time keeping her plants alive. I put together this guide to help others who are in the same situation so that you can make your new house feel more like home.

Zone four is an area of the country that is mainly found in the northern part of the mountain region on the western side of the country. It is also found along the southern coast of Alaska where temperatures can drop to -30 or -20 degrees with ease during the colder time of the year. All of these 15 plants can be found in zone four.

1. Hostas

Hostas can be found growing in zones three through nine. It is actually a plant that prefers the shade, so it will need very little sun to grow. It requires at least an inch of water each week and prefers to grow in soil that has a lot of organic matter.

2. Phlox

The phlox is a plant that can grow as a perennial in zones three through eight. These plants are often tall with large clusters of flowers on the top. They prefer well-drained soil and full sun, though they will still grow when they are planted in the shade. There are also creeping phlox plants that can grow in this zone.

3. Iris

This is a plant that does best in full sun with well-drained soil. It will also grow in the shade, but it needs to have at least six hours of sun a day. Seen in zones three through seven, there are over 200 species of this plant. Wet period of the year can cause leaf spot fungus to form.

4. Coneflower

The coneflower is a plant that can grow to be up to five feet in height, which is why many people like to place it in their garden. They prefer to grow in full sun; however, they will still grow in shady conditions as well. This daisy-like plant can grow in zones three through nine.

5. Daylily

The daylily is a plant that prefers full sun and well-drained soil, but it will grow in any conditions, but the blooms may not be as abundant. These are commonly grown in zones three through nine, and they are a plant that tolerates neglect and forgetfulness well.

6. Peonies

These are plants that can do well in zones three through eight, and it can grow to be up to five feet tall. The rose-like flowers will add a bit of elegance to any garden, and the fragrant blooms will help to attract pollinators to your outdoor space. It will require well-drained soil and full sun to thrive.

7. Columbine

This is a plant that will grow in zones three through nine, and it produces a bloom that has a sweet smell that will attract hummingbirds and butterflies to your garden. They do best in full sun and well-drained soil. The blooms of this plant can be seen from April to May.

8. Aster

If you are looking for a plant that will bring butterflies and other pollinators to your outdoor space, then consider an aster. It can grow up to eight feet tall with the right care. It will do well with any type of lighting, but the soil needs to be slightly moist in zones three through eight.

9. Yarrow

Yarrow is a plant that does best in heat and full sun, which is why it prefers to grow in sandy soil that is well-draining. The plant can be found in zones three through nine, and it is a drought-tolerant plant that does not like to have a lot of water. This is a plant that can spread quite quickly, so make sure that you have space in your garden.

10. Bellflower

This plant can be seen growing in zones four and above, and some of the hardier species of the plant can even grow in zone three. It will do best in full sun conditions, and the plant produces flowers that are shades of blue and purple that will look nice as a border for the back of your garden.

11. Rock Cress

This is a plant that will do well in a rock garden in zones four through seven. It is a plant that needs full sun and well-draining soil, but it does require a bit of moisture to survive. It is a creeping plant that will spread quickly across the rocks like moss.

12. Bleeding Heart

This is a unique plant that creates blooms that are pink or rose in color and heart-shaped. It grows best in zones three through eight, and it will grow in full sun to light shade. Most of these plants are tolerant of the cold, and they prefer slightly acidic soil to grow in.

13. Bee Balm

This is a plant that will attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Bee balm is a plant that can grow to be up to three feet tall. The blooms are all pink, and they will appear in the middle of the summer. They prefer full sun; they are drought-resistant, but they cannot handle high heat.

14. Balloon Flower

This is a very unique plant that puffs out the blooms before it opens them. It can be found in zones three through eight, and it will grow to be between 18 inches to 24 inches tall. This is a plant that may need to be staked before it blooms to keep it upright.

15. Black-Eyed Susan

This is a beautiful plant that has a flower that closely resembles a gold daisy. It will do best in zones four through nine, and the plant can grow to be three feet tall. With full sun, these plants grow quickly, which means they may need to be thinned out in the spring of the year.


Gardening In Zone 4: Tips For Gardening In Cold Climates

If you are in USDA zone 4, you’re probably somewhere in the interior of Alaska. This means that your area gets long, warm days during the summer with high temps in the 70’s and lots of snow and average cold temps of -10 to -20 F. (-23 to -28 C.) in the winter. This translates to a rather short growing season of about 113 days, so vegetable gardening in zone 4 can be challenging. The following article contains some helpful tips for gardening in cold climates and appropriate zone 4 garden plants.

Gardening in Cold Climates

Zone 4 refers to the United States Department of Agriculture’s map identifying your region in relation to what plants will survive in your area. Zones are divided by 10 degree increments and are only using temperature to ascertain survivability.

Sunset zones are climate zones that are more specific and take into account your latitude; ocean influence, if any; humidity; rainfall; wind; elevation and even microclimate. If you are in USDA zone 4, your Sunset zone is A1. Narrowing down your climactic zone can really help you decide which plants are possible to grow in your area.

There are also other things that you can do to ensure

your successful growing of plants for cold climates. First of all, talk to the locals. Anyone that’s been there for a while will no doubt have both failures and successes to tell you about. Build a greenhouse and use raised beds. Also, plant south to north, or north to south. Warmer weather regions are encouraged to plant east to west so the plants shade each other, but not in colder areas, you want maximum sun exposure. Keep a garden journal and record your hits and misses and any other special information.

Plants for Cold Climates

You will no doubt need to do some research on specific varieties of plants that are suited for cold climates. This is where the information gleaned from friends, neighbors and family that live in your area becomes invaluable. Perhaps one of them knows the exact type of tomato that will garner successful fruit when vegetable gardening in zone 4. Tomatoes generally require warm temps and a longer growing season, so prying this nugget of information out of someone can mean the difference between triumphant tomato growing and dismal failure.

For perennials suited as zone 4 gardening plants, any one of the following should do well:

  • Shasta daisies
  • Yarrow
  • Bleeding heart
  • Rockcress
  • Aster
  • Bellflower
  • Goat’s beard
  • Daylily
  • Gayfeather
  • Violets
  • Lamb’s ears
  • Hardy geraniums

Less hardy perennials can be grown successfully as annuals in colder climates. Coreopsis and Rudbeckia are examples of less hardy perennials that work as plants for cold climates. I prefer to grow the perennials myself since they return year after year, but I always tuck in annuals too. Examples of cold climate annuals are nasturtiums, cosmos and coleus.

There are many trees and shrubs that can take the colder temps of zone 4 such as:

  • Barberry
  • Azalea
  • Inkberry
  • Burning bush
  • Smoke tree
  • Winterberry
  • Pine
  • Hemlock
  • Cherry
  • Elm
  • Poplar

As to vegetable gardening, cold season veggies do the best, but with extra TLC, the use of a greenhouse and/or raised beds combined with black plastic, you can also grow most other common vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, celery, cucumbers and zucchini. Again, talk to those around you and get some helpful advice regarding which varieties of these veggies worked best for them.

The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) Plant Hardiness Zone Map is divided into 13 zones. Like all zones, Zone 4 has two subsets, 4a and 4b. These zone designations are guides for selecting plants that will survive the cold temperatures in these regions.

Zone 4 Hardiness Temperatures

Each zone is separated by a 10°F difference.

This means that:

  • Zone 4 is 10°F colder than Zone 5.
  • Zone 5 is 10°F colder than Zone 6.

Zone 4 Subset Temperatures

The subzones are separated by 5°F. That means for Zone 4:

  • Zone 4: There is a minimum average temperature of -20°F to -30°F for Zone 4.
  • Zone 4a: There is a minimum average temperature of -25°F to -30°F for Zone 4.
  • Zone 4b: There is a minimum average temperature of -20°F to -25°F for Zone 4.

There are often lower temperatures in the zone and subsets due to unusual weather patterns and unexpected weather changes. These average temperatures should be taken as base for typical weather.

Frost Dates

Zone 4 is one of the shortest growing seasons of the USDA zones. The first and last frost dates can fluctuate a week or two, but as a general rule, frost dates are used for zones to plan garden planting.

Frost dates for Zone 4 last and first frosts for the year are typically:

  • Last frost date: May 15 to June 1 is usually the last frost range for Zone 4.
  • First frost date: September 15 to October 1 is usually the first frost range for Zone 4.

To stay current on frost warnings, download a frost date app. All you have to do is enter your zip code to access your regional timeframe.

2012 USDA Zone Boundary Changes

In 2012, gardeners saw a slight change in the zone boundary when the USDA updated the Plant Hardiness Zone Map. They discovered the new map showed a 5°F half-zone increase over the 1990 map. The National Gardening Association stated the change was most likely due to newer weather mapping technology combined with greater participation in weather stations providing data to the USDA.

Zone 4 States

Each state has more than one zone due to the differences in climate and topography. Some have multiple hardiness zones. For example, Montana has four different zones. There are 22 states that have Zone 4 regions.

Zone 4 States

Alaska Arizona Colorado Idaho
Iowa Maine Michigan Minnesota
Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire
New Mexico New York North Dakota Oregon
South Dakota Utah Vermont Washington
Wisconsin Wyoming

Zone 4 Gardening Tips

There are many vegetables, fruits and other trees and plants that can be successfully grown in Zone 4.

  • Nut trees that grow in Zone 4 include, English and Black walnuts, Northern pecans, Chinese and American chesynuts, King Nut hickory and a few others.
  • Fruit trees for Zone 4 include, pear, apple and cherry trees.
  • Only sour cherries thrive in Zones 4-6. Sweet cherries require temperatures found in zones 5-7.
  • If trees are designated ‘hardy’ then they are typically suitable for growing in Zone 4.
  • Fruit trees require a certain number of ‘chill days’ in order to produce fruit. Chill days are the amount of days needed at temperatures 32°F -45°F.
  • Zone 4 requires more chill days than zones 7 or 8.
  • Vegetables, such as beans, and cool weather crops, corn, cucumbers, squash, tomato, peppers and many others can grow in Zone 4 summers. Be sure to check plant tags and seed packets for zones.

Zone Designations Don’t Include Everything

Zone designations are based strictly on temperatures, but there are many other factors to consider when planting a garden, trees or landscaping your yard. These include droughts, microclimates, soil fertility/conditions, rainfall and unusual weather changes/patterns. You can find this information in Sunset’s The New Western Garden Book.

Gardening Guidelines for Zone 4

Zone 4 has a short growing season, but you can sow seeds indoors to counter this. Be sure you understand what plants grow best in your zone before investing time and money.

Investor information / Why Invest in Zone 4?

With ballooning property prices dominating Central London, investors and homeowners – particularly first-time buyers – are now looking to the more attractive and affordable residential districts in the city’s outer zones. Here’s why Zone 4 is becoming the new hotspot on London’s property market radar.

In the last decade alone, London has undergone a vast amount of regeneration in the form of transport projects and extensions, town centre makeovers and business growth, stretching commercial success and residential desirability away from the centre and into the capital’s once-disregarded suburbs.

Each Year More Connected than the Last

Back in 2007, the Overground network revolutionised travel for Zones 3, 4 and 5, and now a third of all Londoners are within walking distance of a London Overground station. Now, with the recent introduction of the Night Tube, London has emerged as a truly 24-hour city, giving suburban Londoners more freedom to work and play in the city without the panic of getting back in time for the last train.

According to the London estate agent Portico, the Night Tube will be a key component in the rising property prices of the outer zones, where already investors are seeing impressive rental yields. As Crossrail looms closer and with more Tube extensions planned, such as the Northern line, living and travelling from further afield will seem less of an inconvenience and more of a no-brainer.

The Price of Convenience

For some, Zone 4 might sound a little too distant, but surprisingly the average travel time into the centre of London from a Zone 4 station is 33 minutes – down to less than 30 minutes in 18 Zone 4 stations. When we consider that the average Zone 4 property costs around £421,000 compared to Zone 1’s flabbergasting £1.2m – where not one Tube stop offers a property for less than £500,000 – a half an hour commute seems to be a minimal sacrifice.

Earlier this year, online estate agent eMoov analysed the property prices of all of London’s Tube stations and found that destinations even an eight minute journey apart had a property price difference of more than £1m. For instance, Finchley Road (Zone 2) was found to have an average home value of over £1.4m, whereas just a short Tube ride away in Zone 4, Wembley Park’s values shot down to little more than £400,000.

The Zone 4 Property Hotspot to Watch

According to Portico in a study of the Night Tube’s effect on property prices, Hounslow West currently offers the highest rental yield of all the stations operating the service at 5.3%. Experts at eMoov also endorse this West London borough for first-time buyers, which saw the biggest increase in demand across London in 2015, and the largest across the UK during the year’s final quarter.

Only 10 minutes’ by Tube to Heathrow Airport, within close reach of the M4 and M25 motorways and within 40 minutes’ commute of Holborn in Central London, Hounslow is the ideal location for commuters travelling city-wide and internationally. The introduction of Crossrail at the neighbouring town’s Hayes & Harlington station will only further cement Hounslow’s reputation as a desirable commuter hotspot, bringing in more young professionals looking for a home accessible to the city but without the Central London price tag, as well as investors looking to cash in on the status uplift introduced by Crossrail.

Read more about Hounslow’s growing investment potential here.


Central House

Now available with Help to Buy, Central House’s new Terrace Collection will comprise 25 highly-specified one and two bedroom apartments, due for completion in mid-2017. Residents will enjoy a plethora of contemporary features including a flawless designer kitchen with fully-integrated appliances, video entryphone security and a private terrace to the majority of apartments. Additional benefits will include access to the development’s landscaped communal gardens and a daytime concierge service. For utmost convenience, Hounslow Central station is just two minutes’ walk away.

Trinity Square

Set to include a sensational selection of studio and one bedroom apartments, Trinity Square will appeal to the modern city dweller looking for an expertly-equipped home in a town centre location. These luxury starter homes will feature high-end specifications including oak one-strip flooring, porcelain bathroom tiling, chrome-plated accessories and sleek white palette finishes. The development is just three miles from Heathrow Airport and less than 20 minutes’ walk from Hounslow East, Hounslow Central and Hounslow West Tube stations, all offering direct Piccadilly line services to Central London.

Perennials For Zone 4

My Garden Zone Is

Narrow Selection

Perennials for Zone 4 are Summer Perennials With Lots Of Color

The bright colors of summer’s perennial flowers blooming everywhere are a delight to the eyes. Year after year, you’ll be surprised when all the color of your summer perennials returns. A splash of color from your summer perennials will liven up your yard, as you approach your driveway.

Deep blue and lavender perennial flowers are numerous. A native to the southeast is the Hydrangea with large deep blue blooms. Other brilliant blue or lavender flowers are Phlox. Blue Salvia, Veronica spicata, Bellflowers, and a new Echinacea called the Bluebell. To add purple to your yard, there is a Salvia flower, Catmint. A few lilac Phlox will also delight the senses.

Perennials for Zone 4 come in a variety of different colors

Vibrant red flowers can add spice to a dull garden. The red in flowers can range from a bright orangey-red to a deep burgundy color to even a hot pink-red. You can find Begonias with bright red blooms, just like the Daylily. A flower that has a deep red wine coloring is the Echinacea. Other herbs with red blossoms are Coreopsis, Daisy Perennial, Geranium, Hollyhock, Monarda, Poppy, Astilbe Perennial, some Tiger Lilies, and Sedum.

To add variety and intensity to your garden add yellow or white flowers between the deeper colored flowers. Alternating the colors will help to brighten and highlight the darker more intense colors you have chosen. Begonias also come in yellow, as does the Echinacea. Other yellow flowers that you can plant in your garden include Verbascum, Aurinia montanum, Asclepias tuberosa, Coreopsis, and Black Eyed Susan. If you prefer white flowers to accent the deeper colors, add white Daisies, Hibiscus, Columbines, Carnations, or creeping white Phlox will do the trick.

Perennials for Zone 4 add an endless assortment of colors to a garden

Wide varieties of perennials add an endless assortment of colors to any garden. Let your imagination go wild when you choose your flowers. You’ll be amazed at how easy it is to bring color to your garden.

Perennials For Zone 4

Fire pink Plant Benefits In Landscaping
Fire pink Plant – Silene Virginica

The Firepink plant grows in clumps with an unmistakably vivid bloom that catches the eye. This plant has very week stems, especially when compared to the size of its flowers. It can reach a height of one to two feet when fully mature, but it looks more like a ground cover. This is because the thin stems will fall over once the plant reaches 12 inches. Stems have long narrow leaves with bright, vivid red, tubular flowers. Each blossom is 1 ½ inch across with five individual petals shooting out flat from the flower’s base. Each petal has a V-shaped notch at its end that creates sharply pointed lobes found in sets of two. This makes the blooms appear at first glance to have more petals then just five. The strikingly bright red flowers bloom at the very tip of the stems.
Leaves are green in the summer and turn a reddish-green during the winter months. The Firepink Plant will continually bloom from April through August. It is a perennial with a fast growth rate. It thrives in hardy plant zones four through seven and has been used successfully in zone eight with proper care. It does best in poor conditions. The ideal soil for this species is acidic, well-drained, and rocky. Bird lovers enjoy how it easily attracts birds, especially hummingbirds. Gardeners use it in their landscaping as a border plant. It does well in shady spots, and it is sought after for Hummingbird gardens and wildflower meadows. In nature, it is found growing wild in open, dry areas as well as moist forest settings. This indicates how easy Firepink Plants are to grow and care for. This is a feature that makes them well-loved by both professionals and the average homeowner.

Phlox Paniculata
Phlox paniculata is the scientific name of the hardy perennial plant commonly called Tall Phlox, or Garden Phlox. It’s been a must-have plant for the summer garden for many years. The showy flowers come in white, pinks, purples, reds and orange, along with some varieties that have bi-colored petals. Deliciously scented Garden Phlox is a flower garden favorite that blooms in July and August. A beautiful cut flower that butterflies and hummingbirds love. It grows best in full sun and well-drained soil and tolerates drought once established. It s hardy in zones 4-8. Depending on the named variety the plants reach 24-48 inches tall and will develop a nice thick clump up to 2-feet wide in about three years. There are many varieties of Phlox paniculata in cultivation, and once you’ve grown one or two different types the urge to collect them will be hard to resist.

The Oxeye Daisy Plant
The Leucanthemum vulgare or the Oxeye Daisy is a hardy perennial herb ranging from one to three feet high that might remind you of Shasta Daisies, with a central yellow eye surrounded by 20 to 30 white petals. It is a beautiful wildflower and will flourish in a wildflower meadow. However, this plant can quickly invade other areas of the landscape. In some areas, it is considered an invasive species forming dense colonies. These colonies can displace native plants and destroy existing communities. The Oxeye Daisy population is hard to control because it spreads aggressively. One flower head can produce over 200 seeds annually. Their seeds may also be viable for up to 38 years or more. They also spread vegetatively through subterranean root systems and root fragments. This system permits shoots to spread upward allowing this European native to populate and destroy crops and cattle grazing fields. If growing wildly in a grazing cattle field, cattle will not eat the wildflower destroying the area itself. The Oxeye Daisy thrives in a wide range of conditions from sun to shade but prefers damp soils. Because of this versatility, you will find these perennials in every state. But as an invasive species, it is essential to control it. Some states do not even allow the sale of the plants or its seeds. However, the Internet has made it possible to purchase the seeds in wildflower mixes. An essential part of controlling these beautiful yet suffocating wildflowers is pulling them up by the roots or cutting the plant down before it flowers and produces seeds. If you let the plant flower before mowing, the entire lawn can become overgrown with Oxeye Daisies very quickly. Keeping your yard well-manicured and healthy give this beautiful perennial little chance to survive. Additionally, keeping a densely planted and well-maintained mulched flower garden will help shade out these wildflower seedlings. The Oxeye Daisies are a beautiful addition to any wildflower garden, but always keep in mind that it can take over the area, suffocating other vegetation.

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