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Tiki Central Forums » » General Tiki » » Tropical Gardens with Hardy Plants
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Tropical Gardens with Hardy Plants
Dancin' Lizard
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 27, 2005
Posts: 137
From: Manchester, WA
Posted: 2005-02-15 12:45 pm   Permalink

I read on Ona Tiki's Tiki House Remodel thread that someone wished they could grow tropical plants in their zone. Well....

Just so happens there is a book that tells you what plants (with a tropical look) will grow in your area.

It's Tropical Garden Style with Hardy Plants by Alan Hemsley. It's a tad expensive but worth every dime.

This book goes through the plants (trees, climbers, lily-like, palms, ferns, etc) and tells you exactly what you need to know for growing them in your area. For example:

Brahea (blue fan palm) will tollerate up to a 0 to 4c temperature needs full sun and is evergreen. It has arching long leaves. Remarkable blueish tint. Takes quite a long time to mature. Drought tollerant. Not good in pots.


 
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Swanky
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 4967
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2005-02-15 3:58 pm   Permalink

Thanks for the heads up. It's HERE on Amazon. Used for $16.50. Just what I need to plan a tropical garden here in Tennessee. And then some place to sell me the plants...
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exotica59
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 17, 2004
Posts: 478
Posted: 2005-02-15 8:30 pm   Permalink

Hey Thanks! I have been day dreaming about a new garden that I'd like to install, and had wanted to go as tropical as possible for my frosty zone 5.
Thanks for letting us know that there might be hope for us too!


 
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TIKIBOSKO
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 17, 2004
Posts: 321
Posted: 2005-02-17 12:57 pm   Permalink



Aloha, as far as going for a tropical look, Home Depot (outside garden area) is actually a good place to take a look at what can make it in your particular area and they do have a one year plant guarantee. Just keep in mind when buying plants from nurseries they have been grown under optimal conditions and generally under shade cloth so once you put them out they tend to get thrashed.
But if you follow the link below, Stokes tropicals, they ship every place and they have all sorts of amazing Tropical stuff. The reason I bring them up is in their “Bananas you can grow” book they claim Musa basjoo (a variety of banana) can tolerate temperatures below -20’ (-29’C) with mulch and protection. They claim some varieties can grow and fruit in zone 7 with no protection, others are small enough to keep in containers and you can move them in for the winter.
The website has tons of info, pictures and a USDA zone map if you don’t know where your paradise falls.

Bosko

http://www.stokestropicals.com/



[ This Message was edited by: TIKIBOSKO on 2005-02-17 12:58 ]


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bongofury
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Oct 15, 2002
Posts: 1529
From: Ventura County
Posted: 2005-02-17 4:28 pm   Permalink

I used to get the Stokes Tropicals catalog. Last one I got in 2001 was $7.95 and they (used to) refund that with your first order. Fun catalog to look thru, about 135 pages, and they carry specialty plant foods specific for your bananas, Heliconias, Gingers, etc.

 
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christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3769
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2005-02-17 6:00 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2005-02-17 12:57, TIKIBOSKO wrote:
Just keep in mind when buying plants from nurseries they have been grown under optimal conditions and generally under shade cloth so once you put them out they tend to get thrashed.




A most important lesson.

For color, buy orchids (phelenthropis (sp?) or cynbidiums) shoud be available year round, and add them to the garden as annuals.

I also recommend the foiliage (non-fruiting) green bananas. They grow very quickly, and are hardy and do not require as much sun. With large, beautiful canopies, they resemble coconut trees.

Split Leaf Pheledendrom and Bird of Paradise are also hardy.

The red bananas are more finicky and need sun.

I have not had good luck with Hibiscus, not enough direct sun, and the winter has ended by coconut palm hopes.


 
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Chip and Andy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2128
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2005-02-17 7:17 pm   Permalink

There is no such thing as a House Plant. There are plants that do OK inside, but plants have been around longer then Houses. It's an evolutionary thing.

[ This Message was edited by: Chip and Andy 2009-02-23 10:32 ]


 
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Jungle Trader
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 04, 2003
Posts: 3730
From: Trader's Jungle Outpost, Turlock, Ca.
Posted: 2005-02-17 7:18 pm   Permalink

As far as I know there is only one coconut palm in Calif. that has grown outside to full maturity. It's in Newport Beach at the Crab Cooker. I had no success even growing one inside, so I gave up. Next try, move to Hawaii.
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Dancin' Lizard
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 27, 2005
Posts: 137
From: Manchester, WA
Posted: 2005-02-18 10:49 am   Permalink

Don't forget Bromiliads. They are in lots of sizes and are very tropical looking. I buy them at WalMart for $4 or $9 depending on the size. Very hardy and do well inside. Best of all, when they're done blooming they generally gift you with one or more new plants!

Best thing I have found is to locate a local nursery, know what you're asking for by it's botanical name (take a picture if you can) and ask the nursery people if they can order it for you. Once they know what your plan is and that you've done a little homework they will help you set up and keep your tropical garden alive.

I live in the Pacific Northwest and my local nursery directed me to a topical nursery in Tacoma. They've got all sorts of stuff growing outside so I know it's hardy!


 
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Tikiwahine
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3288
From: Ontario, Canada
Posted: 2005-02-18 11:08 am   Permalink

Up here I'm in a zone 9 micro-climate, but it still gets a little chilly in the winter. Usually no colder than -10C(14F).

In my backyard I grow:

Purple Taro in the pond - but my dog just pulled it out and ate the tuber!(Poi Dog?)

Windmill Palm(they grow great up here)

Hardy ginger in yellow and white

Bamboo "green buddha"(many of them do well in colder climates)

Canna Lilies - all types

I keep my Monstera inside, cuz I'm too chicken to risk it outdoors.

I've got a hankering for one of those "Musa Basjoo" Bananas, it may be an addition this year!

If you've seen
Puamana & Selector Lopaka's backyard Bali Hai, you know how great tropicals can look in the North!

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(edited to fix the link)

[ This Message was edited by: Tikiwahine on 2005-02-18 11:09 ]


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ElDiablo_Rojo
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Sep 22, 2004
Posts: 21
From: Trabuco Canyon, CA
Posted: 2005-02-18 11:19 am   Permalink

I live in SoCal and have had good success with some tropical plants I put in about this time last year: several colors of Hibiscus, Plumeria, Red Banana, a Dwarf Banana (forgot the type), King Palm, etc. The main planting location is in the part of the yard that has full sun from late morning to near sunset. Also, there is a block wall alongside that helps protect everything from the cold winter wind. Only thing missing are some tikis.
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cynfulcynner
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 1800
From: Ocean Beach, San Francisco
Posted: 2005-02-18 8:21 pm   Permalink

[quote]
On 2005-02-17 18:00, christiki295 wrote:
Quote:

For color, buy orchids (phelenthropis (sp?) or cynbidiums) shoud be available year round, and add them to the garden as annuals.



Phalenopsis (moth) orchids will die if you keep them outdoors in most places. They require specific levels of light, humidity and temperature. I should know -- I've killed enough of 'em!

Cymbidiums generally are OK outdoors; be sure to follow the directions that come with the plants.


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gonzo
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Feb 06, 2003
Posts: 77
Posted: 2005-02-19 04:31 am   Permalink

Ive been into palms and cycads for about 7 years now.

Ive planted well over 50 trees in my yard.

For southern cal near the coast nothing looks more tropical than a howea forsterina aka "kentia" palm tree. the cousin Howea belmoreana is great too. Tad smaller and slower.

They grow to perfection here and resemble mini coconut tree. Near the coast they take full sun inland they may fry a bit in the hot sun. They can be found at Home Depot in the indoor section. These are shade grown so it might be best to plant in part shade or move pot into sun slowly. Plants in pots generally dont like full sun so be careful.

There are many other palms that that are great but less commonly found. Try
www.junglemusic.com in leucadia.



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Dancin' Lizard
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 27, 2005
Posts: 137
From: Manchester, WA
Posted: 2005-02-19 9:54 pm   Permalink

Quote:

[i]


If you've seen Puamana & Selector Lopaka's backyard Bali Hai, you know how great tropicals can look in the North!

I'm swooning! You can't see it...but I am!

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(edited to fix the link)

[ This Message was edited by: Tikiwahine on 2005-02-18 11:09 ]



 
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Maori_man
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 23, 2003
Posts: 190
From: Portland, Oregon
Posted: 2005-02-20 4:21 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2005-02-18 11:08, Tikiwahine wrote:
Up here I'm in a zone 9 micro-climate, but it still gets a little chilly in the winter. Usually no colder than -10C(14F).

In my backyard I grow:

Windmill Palm(they grow great up here)

Bamboo "green buddha"(many of them do well in colder climates)

Canna Lilies - all types

I've got a hankering for one of those "Musa Basjoo" Bananas, it may be an addition this year!

_________________


(edited to fix the link)

[ This Message was edited by: Tikiwahine on 2005-02-18 11:09 ]



Ms Wahine - I too have the Windmill palm and it is pretty hardy (I had to wrap the base when it got too cold). I also have several of the Canna Lille, they are fairly hardy and like the Banana if the trunk isn't wrapped, will get knocked to the ground and come back. My Musa's where ravaged two winters ago and came back with a vengence last year! From what I have read - most Bamboo is rather hearty. I have Black Bamboo and it is non the worse for wear after quite a few frosts this last year. Fatsia's are fairly hearty at least to Z8. very tropical in appearence.

I just picked up a book this last weekend at the Garden show here in town called "Big Leaves for Exotic Effect" by Stephen Giffith (2003). He is from the UK and most of the book is about hearty exotics. Check it out if you get a chance! Hope to see you all at the NW Tiki Crawl in June!!



 
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