Should winter planters be a part of a North Carolina business’ commercial landscaping plans? In short, it depends. North Carolinians tend to live in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones five through eight. Raleigh, Cary and Durham are currently classified as being in 7b, which has a temperature range of 5 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit. So as long as a business is willing to use hardy plants that may survive in such cold temperatures, winter planters are definitely something that should be considered.
There are a surprising number of plants that are capable of withstanding Zone 7b winters. Some of the more showy ones are astilbes, asters, sedum, winter health, pansies and black mondo grass. Select mahonias, Jelena, Jacqueline Postill, nemesia, camellias and Christmas roses will add pops of color too. If business managers don’t mind adding more white colored elements to their commercial landscapes, an area filled with snowdrops would likely do.
Restaurants in Zone 7b might want to consider tossing in a few containers of winter vegetables as well. One that has good color and may be used to whip up a dish or two is winter cabbage. The same may be said for colored cauliflower, winter lettuce and Swiss chard. There are also less colorful veggies to consider like turnips, mustard greens, kohlrabi, leeks and scallions.
They may all be grown inside of winter themed containers or actual garden beds. If companies want to utilize containers instead of garden beds, it may be necessary to add a bit of DIY insulation. Items that tend to help are burlap, bubble wrap, Styrofoam, newspapers and board insulation. We’d also suggest locating the containers close to the property’s heated buildings or natural wind breaks. Doing so will help the plants retain some much needed warmth during the evening hours. To learn more about winter plants and how they may add visual interest to commercial landscaping in Zone 7b, please contact us today.