Today I thought I'd show you some of the tropical beauties in my 9a garden, with a focus on colorful closeups. To those of you just joining us, Jacksonville receives lows down to 20 degrees Fahrenheit in winter, and the last two winters were among the worst in recent decades. Have a look at whats possible in a 9a garden with a little thoughtful placement and protection.
Crape myrtle blooms in an agave lophantha
Agave Desmettiana "Variegata"
Billbergias, starting to get some color.
A better shot of the billbergia bromeliads, with vibrant backlighting.
Cordyline Fruticosa "Willi's Gold" is starting to color nicely too!
Pentas beneath lily of the nile.
Pineapple lily and lantana.
Bromeliads and macho fern stand poised and ready to climb the live oak tree.
The front patio is lushly planted with lady palm, chamaedorea radicalis and microspadix palm, birds nest fern, bromeliads, and bananas. The bottlebrush will someday provide shade.
My huge alocasia "california" is the centerpiece of the backyard.
A wide view of the backyard, with everglades palm, false cardamom ginger, philodendron selloum, ti plant, and so forth.
Here's another view of the backyard, including my tabebuia tree, weeping bottlebrush, purple crinum, firespike, gingers and... wait, are those heliconias?
Why yes they are! The "costa flores" heliconias are really starting to look amazing...
Its hard to believe they died to the ground in winter!
I picked up the latest issue of Florida Gardening, which echoed the popular idea that heliconias can't grow where its gets below 40F. Wrong!
Hummingbirds will love the bright orange flowers!
That's it for today! When I step into the garden its easy to forget that we had a frigid winter, and that many of the tropicals died to the ground. I'm sure it will look even better each year, after the roots become more vigorous and the trees provide more cover.