The New 2012 USDA Growing Zones of Rhode Island.
A Warmer Temperature of 5°f. does not sound like much to us but it makes a world of difference to the sensitive growing environment of Rhode Island.
Comparing the New 2012 USDA Planting Zone Map of Rhode Island to the outdated 1993 USDA Growing Zone Map one can see that Zone 6a, with an average low winter temperature of -10° F., is receding toward the Northwestern corner of the State of Rhode Island. USDA Growing Zone 6b, with the 5°F. warmer average low of -5° is quickly becoming the predominant garden planting zone of Rhode Island.
A Warmer Temperature of 5°f. does not sound like much to us but during the spring thaw it can mean that seeds and seedling plants can go into the garden up to a week sooner.
The temperature of Rhode island has been relatively stable since the end of the last advance of the ice age. Now things are slowly changing...
The new updated 2012 USDA Plant Maturity Zone map indicates that there are three Growing Zones in Rhode Island; 6a, 6b and 7a! The older 1993 Growing Zone Map from the USDA showed only two coller growing zones in Rhode Island; 5b and 6a. Since 1993 it seems that the area has warmed from -10° to -15°F. average winter cold in the north to -5° to -10° average. The map indicates that Rhode Island remains cooler in the northwest and 5°F. warmer along the coast.
Outdated 1993 Growing Zones of Rhode Island.