United States - Inspiring Garden Ideas for all Gardeners
The United States offers a vast range of gardening opportunities due to its diverse climate, large geographic area, and varied plant species. Gardening in the US is influenced by factors such as weather, hardiness, heat and climate zones, seasons, and garden styles.
The US has three popular climate zoning systems to help gardeners select suitable plants:
- USDA Hardiness Zones: Based on average annual minimum temperatures, the US is divided into 13 zones (1-13), with Zone 1 being the coldest and Zone 13 the warmest.
- AHS Heat Zones: Created by the American Horticultural Society, this system divides the country into 12 zones (1-12) based on the number of days with temperatures above 86°F (30°C). Zone 1 experiences the fewest heat days, while Zone 12 has the most.
- Sunset Climate Zones: Developed by Sunset Magazine for 13 Western states, this system considers factors like temperature, humidity, elevation, and microclimates, providing 24 zones with detailed growing information for each.
Garden styles in the US are diverse, ranging from formal gardens to cottage-inspired designs. Some popular styles include:
- Formal garden: Symmetrical layouts, geometric shapes, and manicured lawns define this classic style, often featuring traditional plants and materials.
- Native Garden: Emphasizing drought-tolerant, indigenous plants, this style celebrates the unique flora and fauna of the US while promoting sustainable gardening practices.
- Cottage Garden: Informal design, dense planting, and a mix of flowers, shrubs, and herbs characterize this charming style.
- Space-saving solutions like vertical gardening and container planting are common in these small, city-based gardens. Raised beds, rooftops, and community gardens are popular in urban settings.