Southern Rockies and Southwest
These zone descriptions will guide you in choosing the right plants for your garden
ZONE 1. Coldest Winters in the West and Western Prairie States
Growing season: early June through Aug., but with some variation―the longest seasons are usually found near this zone’s large bodies of water. Frost can come any night of the year. Winters are snowy and intensely cold, due to latitude, elevation, and/or influence of continental air mass. There’s some summer rainfall.
ZONE 2. Second-coldest Western Climate
Growing season: early May through Sept. Winters are cold (lows run from -3 degrees to -34 degrees F/-19 degrees to -37 degrees C), but less so than in Zone 1. In northern and interior areas, lower elevations fall into Zone 2, higher areas into Zone 1.
ZONE 10. High Desert Areas of Arizona, New Mexico, West Texas, Oklahoma Panhandle, and Southwest Kansas
Growing season: April to early Nov. Chilly (even snow-dusted) weather rules from late Nov. through Feb., with lows from 31 degrees to 24 degrees F/-1 degree to -4 degrees C. Rain comes in summer as well as in the cooler seasons.
ZONE 12. Arizona’s Intermediate Desert
Growing season: mid-Mar. to late Nov., with scorching midsummer heat. Compared to Zone 13, this region has harder frosts; record low is 6 degrees F/-14 degrees C. Rains come in summer and winter.
ZONE 13. Low or Subtropical Desert
Growing season: mid-Feb. through Nov., interrupted by nearly 3 months of incandescent, growth-stopping summer heat. Most frosts are light (record lows run from 19 degrees to 13 degrees F/-17 degrees to -11 degrees C); scant rain comes in summer and winter.