This is how my garden looked in early winter. Lush with gingers, elephant ears, monstera, peace lily, tis and palms, it really was starting to look like south Florida, at least to me...
And this is what over a week of temps down to the low 20's (and several frosts after that) will do to a tropical paradise.
Here's the interesting thing about this scene of carnage: Everything lived!
My lovely gingers died almost all the way to the ground, with the denser areas faring the best. Each year from now the clump will grow thicker, providing extra protection from frost and so will look better every winter.
You can see that I added a new ti plant, but my "red sister" variety died back a bit. However, every spring around here they bounce back with new trunks sprouting from the main one. Its just as if I pruned it back with frost. One of my "kiwi" varieties actually still has leaves, having a little protection from dead leaves overhead.
My monstera deliciosa, one of the most tender plants in the garden, was well protected in the very corner of the yard and has some firm, green trunks on it!
My peace lilies are pushing out new leaves as we speak! Literally right now! Really!
A couple of my pygmy date palms didn't make it, but the ones underneath other plants did fine. My fishtail palm burnt all of its leaves, but the spears don't pull out so I'm hoping...
My paurotis palms and bottlebrushes got a little burnt, but they're doing alright. The bottlebrushes are finally about to bloom too! You hear that Floridagirl? Soon I'll have some great photos too!
Fuzzy golden flowerbuds are telling me that my Tabebuia should bloom soon! As long as that tree makes it, everythings gonna be okay.
Now the real winners of my garden are these troopers that didn't flinch this winter (maybe a little) and should be used more in a 9a garden for winter beauty.
Weeping Yaupon Holly
Lily of the Nile
This list isn't extensive, these are just the plants that cheered me up this dreadful winter and still look tropical enough the rest of the year. Oh yeah, there's supposed to be another frost tonight. Yay!