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Hi, i live in zone 5, and was wondering what seeds and perennials grown well in zone 5. Also, short of bringing them in the house, would my zone 9 cactus survive a zone 5 winter? Would they do okay in a greenhouse? we are thinking of making a greenhouse with starplates. I love my cactus collection, and would hate to lose them, they survived the move, and hopefully, I can get them to survive a zone 5 winter. I believe I saw cactus growing outdoors in Southern England when I lived there 5 years ago, i have no idea what zone that would be. any/all suggestions appreciated!

-- Gloria J. Geary (, August 28, 2000


I used to live in Zone 5 and gardening is good. I am now in Zone 6 and have many more insects to fight. In Z5 there was enough freezing to keep many more of them than here. One thing I notice for certain is the much shorter growing season.

I don't know about the cacti from Zone 9. While there are wild prickly pear and others in Zone 5, they may be a lot more freeze tolerant than the others. I'm about to find out myself. I brought back a lot of agave cacti from Tucson when I was there in January. I set them out here in Zone 6 in February and they all lived and have really grown. I don't plan on bringing them indoors, well maybe one or two, and the rest will be at the mercy of the weather. If I have to pamper them greatly, I don't want them.

I should mention that the cacti that I brought back were all unwanted cactus that I had helped remove from city residential landscaping. None gathered from the wild. Most were from root extensions of mature plants. Some of the ones I brought back have already made some new plants from their roots. Some are potted, others planted in a nursery area of garden.

Good luck with yours. In my opinion they will do well in a greenhouse.

-- Notforprint (, August 28, 2000.

Gloria: I also live in zone 5, in eastern Colorado, and we have cactus in our pasture. During the winters they get pretty sickly looking, grey/brown in color, but as soon as spring comes, they revive and do nicely. Hard to kill the darn things, in fact. Of course, we seldom get any snow, just cold, dry winds most of the time, and little moisture. Depending on where in zone 5 you live, they will probably do fine. Jan

-- Jan in Colorado (, August 29, 2000.

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