The approach we’ll use is very simple. We’ll create our backyard resort by combining exotic looking tropical plants with well-adapted plants that either look tropical or look good in a tropical setting. The trick is to learn what plants and how to combine them to create that exotic, tropical look. We’re going to use a simple layering approach. At a high level, here’s what to do: create a solid foundation, create the tropical landscape effect, and add the finishing touches.
Outdoor fire pits are another form of backyard fireplaces. Some people also call these fire bowls. The fire pit is the most portable of all of the backyard fireplaces and also takes up the least amount of space. They are ventless and do not have chimneys. Fire pits can be bowls, pots and pits that hold the fire within its boundaries. You may find some fire pits that come with wheels for easier portability. Without having a chimney to force the smoke away from your guests, it could be a little smokier than the other backyard fireplaces. Fire rings are also sometime called fire pits. Fire rings are similar to what you find in a campground. They are simply containment areas for the backyard fire. These are the least expensive of all the backyard fireplaces. You can easily place a grill over the top for cooking.
Here’s a great tip. Go to your favorite garden center’s houseplant section. Of course, there is really no such thing as a houseplant. All plants want to be outside and will perform their best outside. Many of the so-called houseplants are really understory tropicals that will perform beautifully on a covered patio or deck where they have protection from direct sun. Experiment with some of these plants and you are sure to be amazed at the results.
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.
In vegetables the choices are also limitless. An artichoke shrub can grow huge with the right care and provide more outstanding artichokes than you can eat. They are beautiful plants that fit into any backyard landscaping or even as specimen plants in the front yard. Asparagus roots are a must order for any shady woodsy area of your backyard landscaping. The fine lacey fronds are beautiful all season. Homegrown asparagus is unbeatable for taste and freshness. Be sure and buy at least 2 year roots so you don’t have to wait two years for a taste treat. Every spring add a good top coating of rich compost and some manure to ensure huge yields.
Get creative here and have fun. Try seemingly crazy things. As an example, I’ve grown Papayas, Angel Trumpets, candle trees, and Caster Bean plants for years, treating them as annuals. Talk about a tropical effect that will turn some heads! Add the Finishing Touches, The plants you use in the garden go a long way towards creating that tropical, resort-style setting we’re after, but there are other things as well. The tasteful use of containers can greatly enhance the overall effect of your backyard resort. Containers allow you to create lush garden settings in places where it might otherwise be impossible such as patios and decks. Tropical hibiscus, mandevilla, and bougainvilla all make a statement in containers.
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