For the tropical effect, you should have at least one palm tree. It’s hard to imagine a tropical landscape without the presence of palms. Why palm trees aren’t used more in southern landscapes can only be attributed to lack of information. Plant one and you can be sure you’ll hear more than one ”You can’t grow that here!”. There a number of palms that can handle very low temps with little or no damage. Windmill, Sabal, and needle palms come to mind. Palms create the tropical foundation, now you need to enhance the tropical effect. Let’s throw in some bananas, cannas, and elephant ears with their huge leaves for a start. All are very easy to grow and, with a little work, can be protected so that they come back year over year. Yucca and big ornamental grasses add great tropical effect too. Add some real color sizzle with tropical hibiscus, coleus, and Mandevilla and you’re going to start humming Jimmy Buffett and reggae tunes for sure.
Now, let’s go even beyond that and get into an area where you can get really creative and let your personality shine through…. garden art. There are no rules whatsoever here. Simple things like adding tiki torches along a path can make a real statement. Want to get more out there, create a faux Mayan ruin surrounded by tropical-looking foliage. If you don’t have a pool, build a small pond complete with cascading waterfall. Or, suspend a comfortable hammock between trees, complete with a fake (or real!) parrot watching over you while you relax. Remember, no rules here. This is all about you. Have fun.
Since then, my backyard landscape designs have changed, but my passion for it has not. Nowadays, I am into backyard gardening above all. I love to read, to write, and to enjoy the outdoors. Backyard landscape design allows me to create a space where I can do all three. I have downloaded some backyard landscaping software that helps me to plan out the spacing of the various components of my backyard garden. Although I do not have very much space, if I use it cleverly it is enough to create several secluded spots to enjoy my books.
Uncomplicated Systems: When it comes time for you to select your backyard lighting system, you should be careful to select lighting fixtures that are easy to install. You don’t want systems that have complicated electrical cables and connections as you want to compliment your landscape and not have to reinvent everything to do so. Automated Timers: A good idea is to choose an outdoor lighting system that has an automated timer integrated into them. This way the timers regulate the duration and periods that the lights will be on and off, which makes it easier and convenient. You can even get solar powered lighting systems, which will absorb energy from the sun during the day so that they illuminate at night for your safety and enjoyment. This will also save you money on utilities. Plan Your System: Be sure to plan out your backyard lighting system. There are so many systems to choose from and unique fixtures you can add to your décor, you should make a plan for your backyard lighting so you don’t overspend or get fixtures that don’t fit well with your decorating scheme.
So, How do You do It? If you were lucky enough to live in an area that never has to suffer extended cold weather, you probably wouldn’t be reading this to begin with. You would have a year-round growing season with no fear of freezing temperatures, and you could grow whatever you wanted. For most of us, that is not reality so we’re going to have to get creative if we want to create that exotic, tropical backyard landscape, our very own little tropical escape.