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What Is Calgary’s Plant Hardiness Zone?

father and son planting tree in calgary backyard

Are you considering adding to the greenery on your property? If so, you’ll need to consider which plants and trees are most likely to thrive in your growing conditions. In Calgary, these factors vary from one neighbourhood to another, so choosing the best plants can be overwhelming. To help you make the right investment and get the most out of your landscape, here’s a brief guide to Calgary’s plant hardiness zones.

How to Understand Plant Hardiness Zones

Plant hardiness zones are geographic delineations identifying growth conditions. Among the many factors considered when establishing these zones are climate, temperature, drainage, elevation, air quality, soil composition and sunlight. Natural Resources Canada publishes information on hardiness zones throughout the country, which you can use to help determine which plants and trees are more likely to thrive in their area.

The planting zone range in Alberta spans designations from 1a to 4b. However, growing zone categories are also subject to change with changing climate conditions and the advancement of mapping technologies. For example, Calgary used to have a designation of 3a/b; it’s changed in recent years to 4a.


Don’t assume you can introduce the same trees to your property that you saw in your friend’s yard across town. Beyond the regional differences identified by hardiness zones, variations called microclimates can occur within zones. These variations are significant enough within Calgary and its surrounding suburbs to impact the types of trees most likely to thrive in your garden.

A reliable arborist will be familiar with local growing conditions and can evaluate your space to recommend which trees to plant. They can also advise you on how to create the best growing conditions.

How to Choose Plants Based on Zone

Your hardiness zone is critical in determining which plants to introduce into your landscape and how to nourish them. Talk to your arborist about your soil quality, climate quantities of sun and available shade. Better yet, have an arborist evaluate your property and give professional recommendations.

Also, consider how much time and energy you’ll be able to dedicate to landscape care. If you’re short on time, look for low-maintenance options or hire an arborist to keep your greenery healthy and protect it from disease and infestation.

Experienced, Informed Tree Care for Calgary’s Planting Zones

Whatever planting zone your residential or commercial property occupies in Calgary, the expert arborists at ArborCare® are available to help you choose plants best suited to your zone and microclimate. We can supply plants and trees that thrive best in local conditions, and we can provide ongoing care and maintenance to keep them in peak health. Contact us today to learn more about the best plants and trees for your growing conditions.

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