What do you think of when you think of Buffalo? All. That. Snow. Well, all that snow comes from moist air over Lake Erie. All that snow insulates the soil and protects the plants. And Lake Erie, big enough to be an inland ocean, moderates the climate year round, so that it is cooler in summer than where I live, and warmer in winter. As proof I submit:According to the Missouri Botanical Garden, Acanthus hungaricus is not reliably hardy in Zone 5, yet I saw it growing in many Buffalo gardens. And look at the bee balm behind the spiky plant: Here’s an unobstructed view of that same clump: My bee balm never gets that big! I almost wondered if the gardener had a magic elixir, sort of like hair tonic, to get it grow like that, but then I saw it just as tall and luxuriant in other gardens, and concluded that bee balm just does well here.
From these and many other pieces of evidence, I conclude that Buffalo has a milder winter (in terms of temperature) and a longer growing season than what you would find in a cold climate. I’ve been visiting Buffalo with a bunch of other garden bloggers, and I can testify it’s a great place to grow a wide variety of garden plants. So what if it snows? They know how to handle it and it’s good for the plants. Try it, you’ll like it.