General Discussion:

Zone 3a plants

Messages posted to thread:

tina29-Apr-01 07:23 PM EST 3a   
Linda30-Apr-01 12:31 AM EST 2a   
Glen30-Apr-01 12:35 AM EST   
Jude30-Apr-01 02:09 AM EST 3a   
glen - Manitoba30-Apr-01 11:18 AM EST 3a   
Tammie Watson17-May-01 07:07 PM EST 3   
ingrid20-May-01 09:02 PM EST 3a   
sheila07-Mar-03 11:52 AM EST 3a   
durte408-Mar-03 09:22 AM EST 3   
Sarah08-Mar-03 11:54 PM EST   
JoanneS12-Mar-03 12:53 PM EST 3a   

Subject: Zone 3a plants
From: tina
Zone: 3a
Date: 29-Apr-01 07:23 PM EST

I have had no luck growing flowers or flowering shrubs in this zone. Can someone reccommend any plants that are colourful, smell and are very winter hardy. preferably perennials

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: Linda
Zone: 2a
Date: 30-Apr-01 12:31 AM EST

The list is long. Start by taking Lois Holes' Perennial book out of the library.

Year round garden centers usually only have plants that are hardy to their region. Big stores like Walmart or Costco have plants that won't grow in your region.

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: Glen
Date: 30-Apr-01 12:35 AM EST

I garden in 3a/2b as well, and have photos and descriptions of a couple of hundred perennials I have grown in my garden: I might provide you with some ideas of different perennials to try.

My ability to grow a variety of perenials has gone up dramatically after I began to improve the soil in my garden. When I used to have poor, lean soil, I did not have much success either.

If you have poor soil, and don't want to spend the time and $ to improve it, consider growing a native wildflower garden. Native plants generally do very well in poor soil and are quite interesting to grow.

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: Jude
Zone: 3a
Date: 30-Apr-01 02:09 AM EST

I agree with Glen. I'm from the lower mainland of B.C, which everyone thinks is so wonderful for gardening, but in many ways I'd much rather garden here in Edmonton. There are kazillions of plants that grow well here, so if you're having trouble I'd be looking elsewhere for the problem (such as the soil).

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: glen - Manitoba
Zone: 3a
Date: 30-Apr-01 11:18 AM EST

Lots of perennials grow in zone 3. If you have a shade garden, hostas are a must. Most of the stuff at stores like w-mart are hardy to our zone. They are from a supplier in BC however, so they include items like Pampas Grass which doesn't have a chance of overwintering here. The important thing is to do research ahead of time to know what is and what isn't. I enjoy reading Lois Hole's Perennial Favorites and making a list. Her book is geared to perennials for at least zone 3. What type of site were you buying perennials for? Perhaps I can tell you some of my favorites.

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: Tammie Watson
Zone: 3
Date: 17-May-01 07:07 PM EST

In Thompson MB and looking for tall grass(over 5')for around a pond. Want to cover a white south facing fence at pond edge.

ANY suggestions?

very many thanks!

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: ingrid
Zone: 3a
Date: 20-May-01 09:02 PM EST

Tammy, check into the miscanthus family of grasses. Miscanthus sacchariflorus (Silver banner grass) is a moderate spreader. up to 250 cm tall, plus flowers on top of that in late fall. It needs full sun but moist soil. The other miscanthus is m. sinensis (chinese silver grass) and these are clump forming or slow to spread. They like full sun and moist soil. There ae lots of different ones but 'gracillimus' gets 4 - 5 ft tall with fine foliage, plus flowers on top of that in fall. There is also miscanthus sinensis 'purpurascens' which has a reddish green foliage but isn't as tall. therre is also Giant Chinese silver grass (miscanthus floidulus) which is another warm season grass that grows in clumps up to 300 cm or more. In the fall thre are also flowers on top of this. It, too, likes full sun and moist soil. They look very tropical, although I have never had this one. I know I can grow Miscanthus sinensis here in edmonton, but you'll have to investigate the m. floridulus and m. . sacchariflorus for your area's hardiness.

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: sheila
Zone: 3a
Date: 07-Mar-03 11:52 AM EST

I would like to what roses do well in Calgary, We have really sporatic wheather changes here. I have tried the floribunda and the tea roses but they don t do well at all, with the freezing and thawing.. any suggestions..

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: durte4 (
Zone: 3
Date: 08-Mar-03 09:22 AM EST

Hi Tammy. I used to live in Thompson but now live in the warm? south near Gimli. I have a brother that still lives there and got a veriegated grass from him that grows about 3 feet tall. Sorry i don't know the name but it is very hardy even up there.

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: Sarah
Date: 08-Mar-03 11:54 PM EST

Roses for zone 3 to look for would be the Morden Roses, Hansas and old Garden Roses. The English roses by David Austin are zone 4, so they are managable with winter mulching (peat moss with water to form crust). Tea roses and floribundas can also be mulched for the winter, but they are more tender than the english roses.

For the white fence, why not a vine? Hops is an excellent vine for our zone. It does die to the ground every year, but it is quickly grows over everything. If you want flowers have a look at alpine clematis, they don't die to the ground in this climate and can be quite nice. Unfortunately the showier hybrid clematis need to be right next to the house and die to the ground, they just aren't meant fo here. If you are looking for annuals, try Sweet Peas - beautiful and fragrant, or Canary bird vine- vigorous grower and has unusual yellow flowers. Even some of the unusually colored beans are quite attractive as well.

For an extented list of Zone 3 plants check out the Hole's catalogue/magazine, there's much more listed there then what's included in the books. The descriptions will mention if the plant is from out of zone. It's also on their website:

Subject: RE: Zone 3a plants
From: JoanneS (
Zone: 3a
Date: 12-Mar-03 12:53 PM EST

Sheila, a couple of years ago, we were visiting the zoo in Calgary and were in awe of the gardens we viewed. Huge rose bushes inspired me to try these "new" explorer type roses. If they could grow them in Calgary, then surely I could grow them too.

Take an afternoon this summer and head to your zoo gardens with a notebook. It's been a few years, but I'm sure the gardens are just as beautiful and probably contain even more plants.

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