Tell me what you think about my garden and what I have done so far. Turn up your speakers and enjoy.
Here is a link that might be useful: PJ Tropicals
John, Loved your photoshow! Congrats on thinking outside the box- especially for a super-traditional area like Great Falls. In the back corner where you planted your 3 new palms, you might be able to get away with a podocarpus - nice dark green, upright, good contrast in texture to the palms and a tropical feel. Think about adding a brugmansia. It will have to be pot-grown and overwinter in the garage, but it would make a WOW statement. You've done a really good job in using a a mix of colors, and variety of shapes and textures. When are you putting a thatched hut and can I get a pina colada in your garden?
Do you have to be a computer whiz to produce a photoshow?
No, today with all the different user friendly software pakages it shouldn't be a matter of being a wiz or not, but rather her creativity is amazing. Thanks for the kudos and we will have a version 2.0 out in September when all the first year plants have had some time to grow in. Well, you guessed it, there are certain neighbors who do not like my choice in plants. They say things like "that won't grow here." Or "it doesn't belong in a Northern Virginia yard." To them I say too bad, but the overwhelming majority of folks that have seen it, love it.
Very nice, Panama John. We have that very same tiki god (from Target?), my spouse has similar tastes (better not let him see that slide show). By the way, we just figured out ours was not weather proof; it now has cracks in it!
Other plants to consider: one of the bigleaf magnolias like magnolia macrophylla or magnolia tripetala. These are native deciduous magnolias that look very tropical. One or both of them should be perfectly hardy for you. Yucca is very tropical looking; the varigated one is very nice.
Of course lots of hot colored annuals help to fill in the spaces while the big plants are growing into mature size.
You look like you're having lots of fun with it (and the wife is too!).
esh_ga: Yes! It is the one from target and we even got the one that looks darker for another part of the garden. It will be featured in the next version 2.0. I have magnolias on my list and have to concentrate on getting some other stuff planted right now, 13 palms, 2 yuccas and 4 gardenias that need to go in this weekend. It is going to be a hot one so I will be wearing my pith helmet. :') It am going to try using marine spar shellac to coat the tikis to keep the weather off of them. Thanks for the kudos.