What Plants Can I Grow in Nashville? (2023)

Which plants can I grow in Nashville?

Capital of Tennessee and one of the homes of country music, Nashville is a gem in terms of trendy scenes and culture. With any number of historic venues, locals and visitors alike have no shortage of entertainment, and the southern hospitality is sure to make any feel welcome in this city. Particularly welcome are any aspiring gardeners looking to put the beneficial climate to full use, as Nashville falls a great area for gardening! Fruit, warm and cold season veggies, flowers, and lots of options for landscaping are all options here, so let's dive right in to see what makes Nashville perfect for all of your growing aspirations:

Which Plants Grow Well in Nashville?

With it's warm, welcoming climate, finding all manner of plants for your garden will only be difficult in terms of the variety available to you! A great place to find inspiration and insight is at one of the city's local parks, nurseries, or gardens. They're filled with plants that have adapted to the climate and proven they can thrive with minimal maintenance in the native soil. By staying cognizant of any extremes in heat or cold, you'll have a concrete growing season that's sure to yield abundant growth, especially since overwintering is far easier in Nashville than in other areas. To get you started, we have collected a few suggestions for you to consider!

Indian Pink (Spigelia marilandica):This flowering perennial is really easy to grow in Nashville as long as you put it in well-draining soil in partial or full shade! You will often see this plant under the shade of trees or along streams, with its unique blooms showing in June. The flowers have a red flower with a yellow interior, sprouting into a star shape near the top. This unique shape adds beauty to any space and does excellent in areas of your yard shaded by trees, fences, or overhangs.

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What Plants Can I Grow in Nashville? (1)

English Ivy Gold Child(Hedera helix 'Variegata'):Green leaves ringed in white, all with a striking, star-like shape distinguish this plant along with an ability and readiness to climb up to heights of 10 feet if conditions are right! Perfect for trellises, railings, ladders, or lattices, this plant loves the morning sun with dappling shade for the rest of the day. Bring it inside if temperatures drop below 35°F. Keep it growing in medium, indirect light if that's the case.English Ivy GlacierandEnglish Ivy Green Idealare cousins to English Ivy Gold Child, and climbing runs in the family. Both of these variants love it just as much as their cousin, making them just as viable for dimension and character for railings, ladders, or patios with their equally unique vibes and patterns.

If you have a taste for cold season vegetables, you're in one of the best places around! Nashville is the perfect place for these plants. When February rolls around, here are a few you can try:

  • Broccoli
  • Radishes
  • Onions
  • Beets
  • Swiss Chard
  • Celery
  • Spinach
  • Turnips

And if warm season vegetables are more to your liking, you're no worse off with them than their cold-loving relatives. Uniquely suited for the area with their ability to withstand hotter weather which tends to wither other plants, they're also easily managed in more extreme heat waves with drip irrigation and shade cloth. Try some of these in your garden:

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  • Squash
  • Peppers (Hot and Sweet)
  • Rhubarb
  • Okra
  • Asparagus
  • Eggplants
  • Tomatoes

Best Landscaping Plants in Nashville

Nashville has a wide variety of plants that can survive both the hotter and colder months of the area, all of which are readily available for you to view at a local park or garden. It's never a bad idea to learn what you can from the immediate surroundings, as these plants have already proven to thrive in the native soil as well as the climate, making your life that much easier. However, if you're still looking for ideas, here are a few that are up to the task:

Italian Jasmine (Jasminum humile):The lovely, evergreen vines of this plant will bring a lush vibe to your garden year round, and when it's yellow flowers bloom, color will be abundant. A big climber, this plant is perfect for decoration and character for your lawn or garden, so use ladders, lattices, and railings for its full effect!

What Plants Can I Grow in Nashville? (2)

Canna Lily(Canna indica):What starts as a colorful bulb grows into a lovely, blooming flower that comes in a wide variety of beautiful colors. Best of all, this plant is a tough one, capable of withstanding lifting in case overwintering is needed, but able to endure most winter months in its own right! Just be sure to replant after the last frost if you do need to bring it inside.

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Northern Sea Oats (Chasmanthium latifolium):Looking for a decorative grass? The Northern Sea Oat is a perennial with unique, flat foliage! It has small spiked leaf-looking seed-heads that give this plant its name. The leaves are a very dark green and are pointed at the end, being very similar to bamboo leaves! This plant is self-seeding, so it is important to cut the seed heads off to prevent overgrowth, however, these made excellent decorative arrangements when dried, making it a win-win!

Which Plants are Native to Nashville?

Using native plants for your lawn or garden is a great plan for success. Not only have these plants already proven to thrive in the area, but all play a crucial role in maintaining the local ecosystem. Birds, butterflies, and other pollinators need them to survive with the reliable food and habitat they provide, and native plants are also some of the best at preventing soil erosion. What's more, you might even be able to lend a hand to any endangered varieties that might be in your area if you're able to plant a few of their kind in your garden! Here are a just a few who call Nashville home:

Yellowwood Tree (Cladrastis kentukea): The Tennessee Bicentennial tree and member of the pea family makes a lovely addition to any home with its fragrant, white, nectar-filled flowers that bees absolutely love. Blooming between May and June, they can grow up to 50 feet in height with low branches! Resistant to disease, pests, and the native climate, this plant will bring beautiful dimension to your area.

Common Sweetshrub (Calycanthus floridus):Another beautiful, Nashville native, maroon blooms eventually brighten in color as they open and grows best in full sun despite a natural habitat of deep forest canopy, meaning you can plant this one in sun or shade! With a pleasant, spicy aroma, even its bark can be used as a substitute for cinnamon. Resistant to pests, the local climate, and several soil compositions, it's a perfect, low-maintenance addition for your garden.

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Other Plants that Grow Best in Nashville

Purple Horsemint (Monarda citriodora):Also known as Lemon Beebalm, this plant is actually part of the mint family. Driving around Nashville, you have probably seen the pops of this deep purple plant on the roadside, with its tall bloom spikes peaking up above the green foliage. The leaves of this plant give off a lemony scent, giving the plant one of its names. It doesn't need a ton of water, and prefers full sun to partial shade. Bees and butterflies love this plant and can grow to form big colonies over time.

Maidenhair Fern(Adiantum aethiopicum):A great shade option, the Maidenhair fern has delicate green leaves that will liven up your darker spaces! This plant gets its name from the Greek word for "unwetted" due to how rainwater runs off the fronds and leaves. Like many ferns, this one needs moist soil and high humidity, as well as plenty of shade!

Nashville Gardening Tips

With plants that are suited for survival through both warmer summers and milder winters, it's never a bad idea to make preparations regardless of what are typically accommodating growing seasons. Consult your local Farmer's Almanac or similar resource to thoroughly refine plans for your growing season, especially because planting too late or early can result in frozen plants in this region. Cold frames, raised beds, and mulching will see your plants through the colder weather, and drip irrigation and shade cloth will help in hotter times.

When Should I Plant My Garden in Nashville?

Nashville lands in Zone 7a of the USDA Hardiness scale, and that means you'll have the opportunity to plant as early as February! Seedlings can also start indoors before the first frost, and April is a perfect month for planting annuals in Nashville as well. Just be sure to check your area specifically, as frost can vary from region to region, and you don't want a surprise freeze hurting your plants!

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Planting in Zone USDA Zone 7a

Zone 7 is split into two subzones like all others on the USDA Hardiness scale, each distinct for its average winter temperatures. 7a has a range of 0°F to 5°F, and 7b a range of 5°F to 10°F. Because of this, overwintering plays a larger role in this region, and perennials are a great choice with their ability to weather harsher colds. Mulching and cold boxing are easy solutions to major drops in temperatures, but such instances are the exception to the rule that is the milder climate of Zone 7a!


When should I plant in Nashville? ›

Plant & Transplant

a few weeks prior to the last frost date, in late March. They can also be transplanted 2-3 weeks before the last frost date (April 15). Peas and lettuce can also be direct-sown at this time. If you are starting your own warm-season plants (tomatoes, peppers, etc.)

What plants are in Nashville? ›

Native Plants
  • Native tree. Yellowwood Tree / Cladrastis kentukea. ...
  • Native shrub. Common Sweetshrub / Calycanthus floridus. ...
  • Native vine. Crossvine / Bignonia capreolata. ...
  • Native wildflower. Indian Pink or Pink Root / Spigelia marilandica. ...
  • Native grass. Little Bluestem / Schizachyrium scoparium.

What can I plant right now in Tennessee? ›

In Tennessee, we can grow both spring and fall crops of lettuce, radishes, kale and collards. In fall, crops like broccoli, cabbage, kale, collards, lettuce, spinach and turnips are great options. Warm-season crops prefer warmer growing conditions and are killed by frost.

Is Nashville good for gardening? ›

Nashville has a wide variety of plants that can survive both the hotter and colder months of the area, all of which are readily available for you to view at a local park or garden.

What growing zone is Nashville Tennessee? ›

USDA Hardiness Zones

For example, Regent Homes headquarters of Nashville, Tennessee is designated as Zone 7a, meaning our average annual extreme minimum temperature is 0 to 5 degrees.

Can you garden year round in Tennessee? ›

There are several crops that can survive well into the fall or even through winter in many regions of Tennessee,” says Natalie Bumgarner, UT Extension assistant professor and crops specialist. “Plus, leafy greens can be harvested at immature stages to reduce time from seed to your salad.

What zone is Tennessee in for gardening? ›

Tennessee growing zones range from 5b to 8a. Finding what hardiness zone you are in is simple with Gilmour's Interactive Planting Zone Map. Growing zones help gardeners all over the country figure out which plants, flowers and vegetables will thrive and which likely cannot survive the winters of their region.

Why has Nashville grown so fast? ›

1. The Surging Economy. Many educated professionals pick a place to move based on where they can find a good-paying job, and the Nashville region's rapid economic growth continues to be a draw.

What is the most poisonous plant in Tennessee? ›

Poison hemlock, also called deadly hemlock, poison parsley, spotted hemlock and California fern, is highly poisonous and found throughout the state. Researchers say it was originally introduced as a garden plant because of its white, pretty flowers - but those are some flowers you don't want to touch.

What trees grow well in Nashville? ›

What are the Fastest Growing Trees in Nashville?
  • Autumn Blaze Maple. Award-winning foliage and rapid growth make this maple a favorite among Nashville landscapes. ...
  • Thuja Green Giant. Another tree that is insect and disease resistant. ...
  • Arapaho Crape Myrtle. ...
  • Liberty Holly. ...
  • Tulip Poplar. ...
  • Lombardy Poplar. ...
  • Autumn Cherry.

Do hydrangeas grow in Nashville? ›

As you can see, the 'Limelight' Hydrangea is a perfect choice for your Nashville landscape. To keep it compact, be sure to prune in late winter before the spring growing season starts. Remember, it blooms on new wood in the spring.

When should I start a fall garden in Tennessee? ›

Good candidates for planting in September in Zone 7 (most of Tennessee's major cities are in either Zone 7a or 7b) include bush and snap beans, leaf lettuce, turnips, kale, spinach, arugula and Brussels sprouts. If you are planting from seed rather than an established plant, you'll need to start earlier (see sidebar).

Is Tennessee good for gardening? ›

Tennessee gets plenty of sun and rain, so it's good for gardening in general. The farther south you go in the state, the longer the growing season gets. Excluding the mountains, Tennessee is considered a humid subtropical climate with hot, humid summers and cool, mild winters.

When should I start planting in TN? ›

Planting Dates for Spring
CropBased on Frost Dates Based on Moon Dates
Start Seeds IndoorsPlant Seedlings or Transplants
TomatoesFeb 9-23 Feb 20-23Apr 14-May 5 Apr 19-May 5
WatermelonsMar 9-17Apr 21-May 5 Apr 21-May 5
39 more rows

How much do you need to make a year to live comfortably in Nashville? ›

According to a GOBankingRates report published in September 2020, homeowners in Nashville need an average annual income of $84,787, while renters require an average income of $87,115. Various areas of expenditure are factored into cost estimates and generally cover: Housing.

What is a livable salary in Nashville? ›

Living Wage Calculation for Davidson County, Tennessee
0 Children2 Children
Living Wage$17.63$35.29
Poverty Wage$6.19$12.74
Minimum Wage$7.25$7.25

What grows best in zone 7a and 7b? ›

Zone 7. In zone 7, cool-weather vegetables can usually be planted outdoors in early February. These crops include beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, lettuce, onions, peas, potatoes, radishes, spinach, turnips, kale and collards.

What can you grow in a Zone 6? ›

Asters, astilbe, bee balm, cannas, coneflowers, crocus, daffodils, delphiniums, glads, hibiscus, hostas, hyacinths, irises, lilies, peonies, phlox, salvia, sedum, tulips and yarrow are among the Zone 6 plants we recommend.

Does Nashville have zoning? ›

Many properties in Nashville will only have one zoning code current and applicable to their property. At that point, the land use table and bulk district regulations to understand permitted uses, lot requirements, setbacks and more on the property.

What grows in Tennessee in winter? ›

Snowdrops, winter jasmine, hellebore, camellia, and winter honeysuckle are 5 amazing winter plants for gardens. They are durable, hardy plants that don't need much maintenance to beautify your Nashville home.

Is Tennessee soil fertile? ›

The soils are highly leached, low in fertility, and strongly acidic. Most are moderately or well drain but tract of poorly drained soils is common on the bottoms, terraces and depression areas on the upland.

When should I plant tomatoes in Tennessee? ›

Planting Dates for Spring
CropBased on Frost Dates Based on Moon Dates
Start Seeds IndoorsPlant Seedlings or Transplants
ThymeFeb 7-Mar 7 Feb 20-Mar 7Apr 19-May 10 Apr 19-May 5
TomatoesFeb 21-Mar 7 Feb 21-Mar 7Apr 26-May 17 Apr 26-May 5
39 more rows

Where is zone 6 in the United States? ›

Where Is USDA Zone 6? Zone 6 starts in the Mid-Atlantic United States (including parts of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia) and extends slightly down the Atlantic Coast to include North Carolina, Maryland, and the District of Columbia.

What is Zone 7 in the US? ›

USDA Zone 7

The zone includes Long Island, coastal New Jersey, eastern Maryland, most of Virginia and North Carolina, western South Carolina, southern Tennessee, the northern halves of Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi and much of Arkansas.

What is the nicest area to live in Nashville? ›

According to CultureTrip, the nicest Nashville neighborhoods are Hillsboro Village, Green Hills, Downtown, East Nashville, 12 South, and Downtown Franklin.

Does Nashville have a rat problem? ›

These pests range from small insects to larger invasive wildlife, and the issues they present run the spectrum from minor nuisances to property damage and the spread of dangerous diseases. One of the most frequent and troublesome of these unwanted guests in Nashville homes are rats.

Is Tennessee a good state for gardening? ›

Tennessee gets plenty of sun and rain, so it's good for gardening in general. The farther south you go in the state, the longer the growing season gets. Excluding the mountains, Tennessee is considered a humid subtropical climate with hot, humid summers and cool, mild winters.

What are the top 3 crops in Tennessee? ›

-Agriculture in Tennessee is characterized by a diversity of crop and livestock production. On an acreage basis, the three main crops are corn, hay, and cotton. They make up 75 percent of the crop area harvested. Soybeans, small grain, and tobacco are grown on a considerable area.

What grows in the winter in TN? ›

Snowdrops, winter jasmine, hellebore, camellia, and winter honeysuckle are 5 amazing winter plants for gardens. They are durable, hardy plants that don't need much maintenance to beautify your Nashville home.

What can you plant in October in TN? ›

Beets, carrots, radishes and lettuces are good candidates for directly sowing seeds in the ground rather than starting seeds in containers first. Another plus of fall vegetable gardens is you'll have fewer weeds popping up in your beds.

What should I farm in Tennessee? ›

Tennessee is one of the top beef-producing states in the nation, ranks ninth in beef cow numbers and 15th in total cattle. The majority of the Tennessee beef industry is locally-owned by family farmers. Broiler chickens, dairy, hogs and chicken eggs are also important parts of Tennessee's livestock industry.

What are the 4 cash crops? ›

Most of the cash crops grown in the developing nations are sold to the developed nations for a better price. Well-known cash crops include coffee, tea, cocoa, cotton, and sugarcane.

What are the mini winters in Tennessee? ›

(WKRN) – There are four basic springtime winters according to Tennessee folklore: Redbud, Dogwood, Locust, and Blackberry.

Are Tennessee winters mild? ›

Winters are mild with the average temperature of 40 degrees. Summer months are a prime time for outdoor recreation, with an average temperature of 83 degrees.


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