Published at Wednesday, 18 September 2019. Backyard. By Guerin Perrault.
Anything with big, deep green leaves works great, and all the better if it is evergreen. Ornamental grasses like Pampus and Maiden grass make great foundation plants. They seem to add a care-free feel to the landscape as they move with the wind. You should be able to find several that are adapted to your area. Finally, try to find some color for the foundation. Any shrub or tree that flowers and is well adapted to your area is great for your foundation. Crepe myrtles are favorites in southern landscapes. Remember, the idea here is to set that permanent foundation. You’ll definitely want to use things that are reliable in your area, and will not succumb to winter cold.
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.
Entertainment: You can continue to enjoy gatherings in your backyard as dusk rolls in, instead of everyone packing up and heading inside at the first sign of nighttime. Everyone can relax outside in your beautifully landscaped backyard and enjoy themselves under the star-lit sky. Imagine sitting around your bamboo tiki-bar with a colorful array of stringed lights cascading along the roof and counter-top. In addition to that, little lights that gently illuminate along your patio and walkway so guests can see where they are going as they journey and marvel through your landscape. What an extraordinary and gratifying ambiance! Everyone will love getting together in your backyard.
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