Wildflowers For Zone 5 Gardens: Tips On Planting Wildflowers In Zone 5

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By Mary H. Dyer, Master Naturalist and Master Gardener

Gardening in USDA plant hardiness zone 5 can present certain challenges, as the growing season is relatively short and winter temperatures can drop to -20 F. (-29 C.) However, there are many cold hardy wildflowers that provide a bright splash of color, frequently lasting from early spring until the first frost.

Wildflowers for Zone 5 Gardens

Here is a partial list of cold hardy wildflowers for zone 5.

Tips on Planting Wildflowers in Zone 5

When choosing zone 5 wildflowers, consider not only hardiness but factors such as sun exposure, soil type and available moisture, and then choose seeds suitable for your specific conditions. Most wildflowers need well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight.

When planting wildflowers in zone 5, keep in mind that some types of wildflowers can be aggressive. Your local Cooperative Extension office or a knowledgeable nursery or garden center can advise you about wildflowers that may be problematic in your area.

A wildflower seed mix consisting of perennials, biennials and self-seeding annuals are generally easy to grow and provide the longest possible blooming season.

Mid- to late autumn is prime time for planting wildflowers in zone 5. This may seem counter-intuitive, but cold weather and moisture will promote germination the following spring. On the other hand, spring-planted wildflowers that aren’t well-established by autumn may be killed by winter freezes.

If your soil is badly compacted or clay-based, add organic matter such as compost or well-rotted manure into the top 6 inches of soil before planting.

More Information about Zone 5
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