When you select a tree or shrub to plant, the tag should tell you in which ‘hardiness zones’ the plant will survive. If the tag does not contain that information, you should do a little research in books or on the web. We’ve included that information on our pages for individual Trees an Plants.
The map below is from the USDA Agricultural Research Service and shows their 2012 map of plant hardiness zones for Georgia. This map is based on temperatures collected over 30 years between 1976 and 2005. Atlanta is zone 7b.
Hardiness zones are based on the average annual extreme minimum temperature during a 30-year period in the past, not the lowest temperature that has ever occurred in the past or might occur in the future. Keep this in mind when you are selecting plants, especially if you decide to “push” a plant’s hardiness zone by selecting plants not rated outside your zone.
You can access the USDA’s Interactive Hardiness Zones Map for the entire U.S. and select a specific state or zip code.
References and Additional Information
 USDA Agricultural Research Service: U.S. Plant Hardiness Zones map
 American Horticultural Society: USDA Hardiness Zone Map
 UGA Extension: Native Plants for Georgia Part I: Trees, Shrubs and Woody Vines (B 987)