What Planting Zone is WV?

Michelle Hill

If you’re a gardener in West Virginia, it’s important to know what planting zone you’re in. Understanding your planting zone can help you choose the right plants for your garden and ensure that they thrive in your climate. In this article, we’ll explore what planting zone West Virginia is in and what it means for your gardening endeavors.

What is a Planting Zone?

A planting zone, also known as a hardiness zone, is a geographic area that has similar climatic conditions. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) divides the country into 13 planting zones based on minimum winter temperatures. Each planting zone is defined by a range of temperatures that plants can tolerate.

Knowing your planting zone can help you select plants that are well-suited to your climate. This can save you time and money, as plants that aren’t adapted to your zone may struggle to grow, require more maintenance, or even die.

What Planting Zone is WV?

West Virginia is located in USDA planting zones 5a to 7b. The northern part of the state is in zone 5a, while the southern part is in zone 7b. The zones are determined by the average annual minimum temperature. Zone 5a has a minimum temperature range of -20 to -15 degrees Fahrenheit, while zone 7b has a minimum temperature range of 5 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit.

It’s important to note that planting zones are just a starting point. Other factors, such as soil type, rainfall, and exposure to sun and wind, can also affect plant growth. However, knowing your planting zone can help you make informed decisions about which plants to choose for your garden.

What Plants Thrive in WV’s Planting Zones?

There are a variety of plants that are well-suited to West Virginia’s planting zones. Here are a few examples:

Zone 5a

In zone 5a, where temperatures can drop as low as -20 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s important to choose plants that are hardy and can survive the cold. Some plants that do well in this zone include:

  • Lilacs
  • Peonies
  • Hostas
  • Daylilies
  • Iris

Zone 6b

Zone 6b, which includes parts of central West Virginia, has a minimum temperature range of -5 to 0 degrees Fahrenheit. Some plants that thrive in this zone include:

  • Hydrangeas
  • Japanese maples
  • Roses
  • Black-eyed Susans
  • Coreopsis

Zone 7b

In zone 7b, where temperatures rarely drop below 5 degrees Fahrenheit, you can grow a wider variety of plants. Some examples include:

  • Azaleas
  • Rhododendrons
  • Crape myrtles
  • Butterfly bushes
  • Daylilies

It’s important to research specific plants before adding them to your garden to ensure that they’re well-suited to your climate and growing conditions.

How to Determine Your Planting Zone

If you’re unsure what planting zone you’re in, there are a few ways to find out. One option is to use the USDA’s interactive planting zone map, which allows you to enter your zip code and find your zone. You can also ask your local nursery or garden center for guidance.

Tips for Gardening in West Virginia

Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, here are a few tips for gardening in West Virginia:

Choose Plants that are Well-Suited to Your Zone

As we’ve discussed, choosing plants that are adapted to your planting zone can help ensure their success. Research plants before adding them to your garden, and choose varieties that are well-suited to your zone’s temperature range and growing conditions.

Consider Soil Type and Drainage

West Virginia has a variety of soil types, including clay, loam, and sand. Understanding your soil type can help you choose plants that will thrive. In addition, good drainage is important for plant growth. If you have heavy clay soil, consider adding organic matter to improve drainage.

Protect Your Garden from Wildlife

West Virginia is home to a variety of wildlife, including deer, rabbits, and groundhogs. These animals can wreak havoc on your garden, so it’s important to take steps to protect your plants. Consider installing a fence, using repellents, or choosing plants that are less attractive to wildlife.

Water Wisely

West Virginia’s climate can be unpredictable, with periods of drought followed by heavy rain. To ensure that your plants are getting the right amount of water, consider using a drip irrigation system or watering in the early morning or late evening when temperatures are cooler.


West Virginia is located in USDA planting zones 5a to 7b. Knowing your planting zone can help you choose plants that are well-suited to your climate and ensure their success. When gardening in West Virginia, consider factors such as soil type, wildlife, and watering needs to help your plants thrive.


1. What is the difference between planting zones and hardiness zones?

Planting zones and hardiness zones are the same thing. They refer to geographic areas with similar climatic conditions, as defined by the USDA.

2. What is the best time to plant in West Virginia?

The best time to plant in West Virginia depends on the specific plant and your location within the state. In general, it’s best to plant in the spring or fall when temperatures are cooler and there’s more moisture in the soil.

3. Can I grow tropical plants in West Virginia?

Tropical plants are not well-suited to West Virginia’s climate. The state’s planting zones have cold winter temperatures that would not be conducive to tropical plant growth.

4. How can I protect my garden from pests and diseases?

There are a variety of ways to protect your garden from pests and diseases, including using organic pest control methods, rotating your crops, and choosing disease-resistant plant varieties.

5. What should I do if my plants aren’t growing well?

If your plants aren’t growing well, it’s important to assess the environmental conditions and make any necessary changes. This could include adjusting watering or fertilizer levels, improving soil drainage, or moving plants to a better location.

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