Tuffy Plants – Zone 8 Evergreens: There are not too many Australian native plants that are cold hardy — at least by American standards — because, well, Australia is not a very cold place. Sure, there are some parts of Australia that get “cold” (e.g. inland mountain climates in New South Wales, parts of southern Australia and, of course, Tasmania) but nothing like we would see in our Zones 3 through 6 here in the States… they simply do not have this sort of weather. So when we talk about “cold hardy” Australian natives, we must think about it within the proper context.
That said, the primary application/benefit of Tuffy plants is for use as EVERGREEN landscape grasses (although Mixed Containers & Planters is a second application with several varieties!) where you may otherwise use a groundcover or true ornamental grass. Ornamental grasses will die back with the arrival of the first few frosts in Zones 8 and 9 and basically look dead until spring, but Tuffies will remain evergreen year-round. This is a HUGE benefit because it means less maintenance in the way of pruning and, of course, great looking landscapes even during winter. So while these plants are root hardy to temperatures colder than we list, we are emphasizing those climates where Tuffies will be evergreen because that’s where they will be of greatest benefit. Please note that Hardiness Zones are very general; actual hardiness (or frost/cold tolerance) will depend on many other factors including microclimate, elevation, site exposure and amount of irrigation to name a few. Contact us for more details!