Most tropical plants are by their nature suited to a tropical climate, but there are some that are hardy and can be grown successfully in cooler areas. So if you fancy adding an exotic tropical feel to your garden these twelve plants will be a good place to start. These hardy tropical plants are described in an article by Kathy Woodard which I found on The Garden Glove website.

Tropical plants are an amazing statement to add to any garden, offering exotic design sense and wonderful texture and color. Ok, we love ?em ?cause we can pretend to be on a beach in Fiji, or wandering around the rain forests in Hawaii, or pretty much any other place in the world where tropicals thrive. The trouble is, tropical plants are just that? tropical. And most of us don?t live in such exotic growing zones. (All of you lounging under your palm trees in Florida, stop laughing at us. ) However, we found these hardy tropicals you can grow, just about anywhere! Some of them are pretty hardy in all but the coldest climates (hey, there are places even roses won?t grow!) and some of them need some winter protection. Some of them come back every year, but a few?others are annuals you can use to fill in your tropical garden as it grows. All of them are worth a try for any gardener!
There are three types of tropicals we are going to cover for the sake of planning such a space. There are too many to list them all, so if you choose a few in each category, you are well on your way to a tropical zone! Remember, to always have hardscaping structure when trying to grow a ?wilder? type of naturalized garden like this. A well placed path, deck, or gazebo will help pull the garden together when those huge leaves, bountiful flowers and dramatic focal points start to make your world their own!
Height and Drama
The most cold hardy palm grown in the U.S. is called the Windmill Palm. Hardy down to zone 7, it can be made even more hardy by taking winter precautions. Many gardeners grow palms in Ohio, New York and Virginia, by wrapping the tree with burlap, planting in a wind protected position, and mulching deeply. Generally grows 10- 20 feet tall, in full to partial sun. Can be potted in a large container. Often used at tropical location hotels. Photo from ?Fast Growing Trees?.
Hardy tropicals-1

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