lorax wrote:What about Kiwi Issai 'Variegata' or perhaps a nice Clematis? Both will do well in potted culture, and with the kiwi you've got a chance at fruits as well.
Also, depending on how big your pot is, if you haul it into the basement for the winter, the Kiwi will be a perennial. The Clematis definitiely will survive your winter - I used to live in 3a and mine overwintered like stars.
Another thing to consider is a grape, something like Concorde. Again, hardy in 3a and produces tasty fruit as well as lovely decorative foliage.
On the other hand, if you're OK with definitely losing the plants to winterkill, you could try Passiflora incarnata (Maypop). Again, lovely leaves even if it never blooms. Or, if you can find starts, Solanum seaforthianum is beautiful and has amazing flowers. Ditto to Thunbergia alata, aka Black Eyed Suzy or Clock Vine (which is a noxious weed where I live, but your winter would keep it in check) and Cobaea scandens, aka Cups and Saucers (also a hideous weed here, but a cherished annual north of 30).
Regarding bringing plants in to overwinter, how do you make sure they experience a period of dormancy, rather than trying to grow and dying off? I'm in an apartment, so there's no "cool but not cold" place I can put them. And obviously, burying them in the ground is out. I've got some fairly dark (but not totally dark) spaces; would these be of use?
Also, does anyone know how much cultivars and natives differ in terms of dormancy requirements? The clematis suggestion got me thinking about trying to raise a native clematis, but they might need more cold than I can provide indoors (but would still be winterkilled in pots).