Hi Everyone. I am a first time poster long time observer. I want to thank everyone for all of the information I have absorbed. I broke down last year and purchased three JM's thru the mail. I now own a Shirasawanum, Shishigashira, and a Jiro Shidare. I was told they were all appx 3 years old. Like Kaydye OP, I live in zone 5, outside Milwaukee, WI. We also had a very cold winter this year. It started with a lot of snow cover, which made me happy, but then we went thru a melting/freezing rain cycle followed by lots of cold. I am happy to say all of the JM's made it thru just fine. Both the Shirasawanum and the Shishigashira are protected from the north and west by my house and fence. They receive morning sun. I tried to plant the Aureum in my front yard twice which was exposed to afternoon sun and it hated it. I knew better, but I had my heart set on it being in the front yard. In September, I replanted it in its present spot and am so happy it came back strong this year. The Jiro Shidare was fully exposed to the north winds and is in afternoon sun. This JM seem to be more hardy than the other two. Sorry for the late and long winded response. I just wanted to share so others might take the plunge as well. Thanks again.