By Jennifer Poindexter
Planting zones are a great way to know what your growing options are based on your location. It can help you know when to plant, too! If you haven’t researched your planting zone, now’s the time.
A planting zone is a way for different areas to be divided into sections based upon their average cool temperatures. This helps provide information on first and last frost dates which helps to calculate when certain plants should be grown in an area.
Planting zones also decipher which plants can be grown as perennials in specific areas. If you live in planting zone six and are interested in figuring out which plants do best in this area, here’s the information you need:
What You’ll Learn
- The concept of planting zones and their role in gardening decisions
- Key characteristics and climate specifics of planting zone six
- An overview of 20 plants that thrive in zone six, including Coneflowers, Daffodils, and Crocus, among others
- Essential care instructions for each plant type
The Basics of Planting Zone Six
Planting zone six stretches from the Pacific Northwest to southern Pennsylvania. It creates a slight arch throughout the United States.
This area is known for having temperatures as low as -10 degrees Fahrenheit. Expect this area to remain frost-free from the middle portion of May until September.
The nice thing about planting zone six is it still has a good sized window for a growing season. Now that you know what to expect in this area, let’s talk about what to grow.
Plants That Grow Best in Planting Zone 6
There are many plants which grow well in this planting zone. Consider planting some of the following to brighten up your landscape:
Coneflowers are taller plants with colorful petals. They get their name because the petals droop down and cause the dark center to protrude. This creates a cone shape.
If you’re interested in growing this plant, provide a location with ample sunlight and well-draining soil. This plant should be a hardy option in planting zones six, as they remain hardy in zones five through eight.
Daffodils are beautiful yellow flowers that offer great color for your landscape and a splash of cheer wherever they grow.
When growing daffodils, select a growing location with at least six hours of direct sunlight. They need well-draining soil, too. These flowers remain hardy in planting zones three through eight.
Crocus are early bloomers. They produce colorful, broad flowers while remaining a low-growing plant. These flowers do well in well-draining soil and areas of either full or partial sun.
Like many other plants that bloom in early spring, the harsher the winter, the better they produce. Therefore, it’s no surprise that they’re hardy in planting zones three through eight.
Asters produce daisy-like blooms in a variety of colors. They’re a great way to add life to dull areas around your yard.
When growing this plant, be sure to provide ample sunlight and soil that’s well-draining. It should be slightly sandy as well. These flowers can serve as perennials in planting zone six.
Dahlias remind me of the paper mache flowers I used to make in art class as a kid. Their bright, beautiful heads are hard to miss. If you’d like to incorporate these gorgeous creations into your growing spaces, be sure to provide a growing location with nutrient-dense soil that is loose and well-draining.
These flowers also need a good amount of sunlight. Though they grow in planting zone six, they should be treated as annuals in this area.
Salvia is a mounding plant with a base of deep green leaves, long stems, and vertical blooms filled with rich color. These make excellent border plants and do well when incorporated with other flowering plants within a bed.
Should you grow salvia, be sure to provide a location with plenty of sunlight and well-draining soil. These flowers should remain hardy in planting zone six.
Azaleas are a beautiful plant to incorporate into your landscape. Many people utilize them as shrubs to line their home.
No matter what your plans are for your azaleas, plant them in a location with bright, morning light and afternoon shade. The soil also needs to drain adequately. These plants remain hardy in planting zones five and higher.
Cannas are a type of lily which produce bright green leaves and floppy red blooms. If you’d like to draw attention to a specific area around your home, these flowers could help.
Be sure to plant canna lilies in areas with full to partial sunlight. It’s also important that the soil for these flowers retain some moisture while allowing excess water to drain away quickly. You may grow these lilies as annuals in planting zone six.
9. Hardy Hibiscus
Hardy hibiscus flowers are one of my favorite plants. I love their vivid colors and trumpet-shaped blooms.
If you’re interested in growing this flower around your home, select a location with plenty of sunlight and well-draining soil. The hardy hibiscus variety should serve as a perennial in planting zone six.
Lilies come in many sizes and colors, but their blooms are hard to miss no matter the variety. Most of them are bell-shaped and become broader with age.
When growing lilies, select a location with nutrient-rich soil and full sunlight. Expect these flowers to remain hardy in this planting zone.
Phlox is a sprawling plant that produces colorful blooms while growing low to the ground. These flowers look like a colorful rug as they only grow to be a half-foot in height (or less) and spread out over their growing space.
You should encourage this plant to thrive by placing it in a growing location which contains full sunlight and well-draining soil. Phlox should remain hardy in planting zone six.
12. Coral Bells
Coral bells are colorful flowers that consistently draw your eyes in their direction. They produce rich mounding foliage, long stems, and dainty blooms on the end.
Not only are these plants a great way to add color to your landscape, but they grow in most locations. They do well in both full sun to full shade. They do need well-draining soil to thrive. Coral bells should serve as perennials in planting zone six.
There are many varieties and colors of tulips. No matter the type you plant, ensure they receive full sunlight and are surrounded by soil that drains quickly.
Not only are these flowers beautiful, but they’re hardy. Expect them to serve as a perennial from planting zones three through seven.
Sedum produces tight heads with small clusters of blooms. These plants can handle full to partial sunlight.
Plus, they require soil that’s light, well aerated, and drains well. If it’s too compact, the plants will rot. If you provide what this plant needs, it should remain hardy in planting zones three through eleven.
15. Bee Balm
Bee balm is a whimsical flower. It produces brightly colored blooms with petals that almost have an aquatic feel to them.
Plus, they’re excellent for drawing pollinators to your yard and remain hardy in planting zone six. If you’re interested in growing bee balm, plant it in an area with full sunlight and nutrient-rich, well-draining soil.
Astilbe produces a base of foliage, longer stems, and a triangle shape of clustered blooms. These flowers come in a variety of colors and are another great way to add charm to barren areas around your home or yard.
If you’re interested in growing this plant in zone six, it’s important to understand what it needs. These plants need morning sunlight, afternoon shade, and well-draining soil. They should also remain hardy in this planting zone.
Hostas are a great way to add life to blank areas of your yard. These plants grow where most other plants won’t.
The reason being, unlike most plants which require full sun, hostas thrive in areas of partial shade as long as they have well-draining soil. They also should remain hardy in planting zone six.
Irises are another gorgeous but sturdy plant. These plants have a base of foliage, long stems, and gorgeous blooms.
They make a great border plant or even a backdrop to shorter flowers in a garden. Irises are hardy in zone six and do well in areas of full sunlight and nutritious, well-draining soil.
Peonies are a shrub-like flower that produce fluffy blooms. They’re durable plants that remain hardy in planting zones three through eight.
Expect these plants to do well in growing locations with full sunlight and soil that remains evenly damp while draining excess away quickly.
Forsythia is the last plant to discuss planting in zone six. This is a shrub-like plant that produces an abundance of color.
These plants thrive in a location with full sunlight and well-draining soil. Expect forsythia to remain hardy in your growing location.
These are twenty plants which do well when grown in planting zone six. Not all of them are perennials, but if you provide the right growing conditions and care, they each should thrive throughout their season.
If you’re looking for a way to brighten your landscape, pick the plants you like best and begin adding them to your yard or garden to add charm to your surroundings in planting zone six.
- Understanding of planting zone six, characterized by temperatures as low as -10 degrees Fahrenheit and a frost-free period from mid-May until September
- The potential of these plants to thrive in zone six with proper care and conditions, despite not all being perennials in this zone
Zone 6 Plants Reference Growing Chart
|Plant Name||Sunlight Requirement||Soil Type||Hardy in Zone Six|
|Daffodils||At least 6 hours of direct sunlight||Well-draining||Yes|
|Crocus||Full or partial sun||Well-draining||Yes|
|Asters||Ample sunlight||Well-draining, slightly sandy||Yes|
|Dahlias||Good amount of sunlight||Nutrient-dense, well-draining||No (Annuals)|
|Salvia||Plenty of sunlight||Well-draining||Yes|
|Azaleas||Bright, morning light and afternoon shade||Well-draining||Yes|
|Cannas||Full to partial sunlight||Soil that retains some moisture||No (Annuals)|
|Hardy Hibiscus||Plenty of sunlight||Well-draining||Yes|
|Coral Bells||Full sun to full shade||Well-draining||Yes|
|Sedum||Full to partial sunlight||Light, well aerated, well-draining||Yes|
|Bee Balm||Full sunlight||Nutrient-rich, well-draining||Yes|
|Astilbe||Morning sunlight, afternoon shade||Well-draining||Yes|
|Irises||Full sunlight||Nutritious, well-draining||Yes|
|Peonies||Full sunlight||Evenly damp, well-draining||Yes|