Montana: Plant Hardiness Zones, Climate & Soil Conditions

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Agriculture has been an important part of Montana’s economy and history.

Montana is one of the nation’s leading producers of wheat, barley, lentils, and flaxseed. Montana farmers and ranchers also produce beef, lamb, wool, and honey.

Montana’s climate and a diverse landscape provide ideal conditions for raising a variety of crops and livestock.

The state’s dryland wheat production is among the highest in the United States.

Agriculture is an important driver of Montana’s rural economy. The state’s farmers and ranchers take pride in producing high-quality food and fiber products that are enjoyed by people around the world.

Montana Plant Hardiness Zones

Let us go through the US Plant Hardiness Zone Map.

Plant Hardiness Zone Map for Montana


The temperature around the state varies with the location and altitude.

The summer temperatures range around 85˚F in July while it drops 0˚F in January during winters.

Chinook winds from the southwest aid in raising the temperatures, especially in the mountainous regions.


The average annual precipitation in the state is about only 15 inches, with significant differences between the eastern and the western portions of the state.

Soil Type

The below map shows the Ecoregions of the state of Montana.

Now let us see the soil orders present in the state.

Soil Order Of Montana

Soil / Sub OrderLocationCharacteristics
Alfisols/UstalfsIn the Rocky Mountains1. Ustic soil moisture regime
2 .Supports savanna and grassland vegetation
Inceptisols/UsteptsIn the Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains1. Freely drained with ustic soil moisture regime
2. Most of them are used as croplands or pastures
Vertisols/UstertsIn the Great Plains1. These are clayey soils that have deep, wide cracks during some part of the year
2. The saturated hydraulic saturation of the soil is very low
3. The permeability of these soils are very slow
Mollisols/UstollsIn the Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains1. These are more or less freely drained mollisols of sub-humid to semi-arid climates
2. Drought is frequent and may be severe
3. This soil requires a good amount of irrigation due to a lack of soil moisture which could affect plant growth.
Aridisols/ArgidsThese soils account for a very small region in the Great Plains1. These are dry soils
2. They have an argillic or natric horizon
Entisols/OrthendsIn the Great Plains1. These soils have no diagnostic horizons
2. They are commonly on recent erosional surfaces

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