Summer is just around the corner and it’s time to start daydreaming about sunny mornings enjoying coffee or tea on the front porch, warm evenings entertaining guests on the patio and hot afternoons by the pool.

Make your patio, deck or pool area a space you’ll want to be all summer long. Designing a space worthy of a tropical staycation extends beyond a lounge chair and pretty umbrella. Adding some living color and textures can transform your area into a space all of your guests will be talking about.

Going to the Tropics

Think tropical vacation! What would that look like? Whether it’s relaxing by the water, playing with your kids or having a quiet dinner under the moonlight, no doubt you would be surrounded by the wonderful colors of tropical plants. You can have this in your own backyard!

Incorporating plants with different colors and textures throughout your backyard – and especially by your pool – is the perfect way to create a ‘Staycation’ space you will enjoy all summer long.

Whether you want to create an entire tropical landscape or just add some flare to your poolside, knowing which tropical plants work in your zone and how much sunlight they require is important. Homestead Gardens’ Annuals Department can offer guidance on plants that will work for you.

Natural Layered Edges

You don’t need to fully transform your backyard into a tropical paradise to get a tropical feeling. Start by lining your space with towering shade trees intermixed with native shrubs and groundcovers to give it a natural texture. Creating layers will allow you to have a garden that doesn’t need to be tended to every week. Some extra growth here and there will still look good.

Pair the unique foliage of canna lilies, hosta or coleus with a brightly colored hibiscus, mandevilla or calla lily. Add an exclamation point in your landscape with the eye-catching foliage and height of a hardy banana tree. Mixing and matching patterns and colors makes your space seem more natural. This will help you fill in the space by working from the outside in.

Tropical Containers

Using containers is a great way to add dimension to your poolside landscape. Find fun, brightly colored containers and get planting.

There are many planting recipes that will help your backyard feel like a tropical paradise every day. Choose any of our flowering plants or fun foliage from Fresh from Florida and the Proven Winners line of tropical plants.

Just like your garden spaces, plant your containers in layers. The location of your containers determines how you should organize your plants. Will your container be seen by all angles? Make the highest point in the middle, with medium plants surrounding it and smaller plants along the edge. Try a bright and cheery tropical hibiscus or tall and decorative canna for the middle. Plant cuphea around it or another heat-loving flower. Finish by planting foliage that drapes down the sides of the container such as creeping sedums, creeping jenny or sweet potato vine.

Containers that will be seen primarily on one side should be planted with the tallest flowers in the back, then stagger plants in size as you reach the front of the container.

Using containers allows you to keep your plants year-round. When the cold weather comes back around, ask our experts at Homestead Gardens about over-wintering your plants inside.

Now it’s time to entertain!

Spend more time outdoors and enjoy the sunshine in your new space. Host summer guests at your poolside tropical oasis and enjoy your new backyard getaway!

Homestead Gardens’ Annuals Department can help find the best tropical plants for your space. We have experts on hand to answer any questions or provide advice – and provide a quality experience to enjoy all season long.

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