I must live under a rock. Although I've heard others reference a "new" USDA hardiness zone map, I assumed they were referring to one released a couple of years ago. In that release I was still zone 6a. So now, living just south of Hartford, I'm apparently zone 6b. As a confessed zone pusher I'm not really all that surprised. When I moved into my current home 17 years ago, I routinely experienced below zero temperatures on a handful of nights each winter. It's been years since it's gotten that cold here-single digits are now the handful of lows.
Since 2005 Musa basjoo has been hardy in the ground in my patio garden. For the first couple of years I winter protected it with a wire cage stuffed with shredded leaves until it started turning a grove. Now it's on it's own, playing nicely with others and doing just fine.
Two years ago I planted a Leycesteria formosa 'Golden Lanterns' (zone 7) just off the patio that is also getting quite large and thriving. I suspect my patio gardens are in a zone 7 microclimate created by the south facing garage wall and patio stone. Aucuba must have missed the memo from the folks at USDA though. Despite spring planting and no winter sun, it's been a dud. Maybe in a few years I'll be zone 7 and can try again. Until then it's off to find some hardy palm trees!