Temperatures are really starting to warm up here in North Florida which means it is the perfect time to introduce some tropical foliage into your outdoor porch area. Whether you have shade, sun, or something in between, we have something green to spice up your space. Is your porch more on the shady side? Not a problem! The greenhouse is home to many great options that would love a warm, humid, shaded spot.
We always carry several sizes and varieties of Dracaena – one of the lowest maintenance plants around. There are many different types of Dracaena originating in tropical regions of Africa, Madagascar, and other places. This plant is very drought tolerant and would prefer to go a couple weeks between waterings. They also are tolerant of low light, especially the dark green colored varieties. With long, glossy strap-like leaves, adding Dracaena to your porch is an easy way to liven up a shady space.
Looking for something a bit more showy? Bamboo palm adds height and feathery foliage for a true tropical feeling even in the shade. People love the look of palms but don’t always have enough light for them to thrive. Fret not, bamboo palm is here to save the day. Bamboo palm grows natively in forests of Mexico amongst larger trees where they are capable of growing with lower light.
Another excellent shade dweller is the Rhapis Palm also known as Lady Palm. This palm is so adaptable that it can even survive our winter temperatures without protection, resulting in people planting it in the ground. It has a beautiful fan (Palmate) shaped leaves provide a unique and tropical look.
We also have plenty of options if your outdoor space is more on the sunny side. Our greenhouse has started to fill up with what we call “Patio Palms”, meaning beautiful, tropical palms that need more light than provided inside the house but will thrive outside on the patio. Each one has its own unique look and character.
Areca palms have beautiful feathery, pinnate shaped fronds and a yellow-hued trunk. Cat palm has a similar look to the Areca except it has lush, dark green foliage and trunk. Both would be a beautiful addition to a screened in patio surrounding a pool or any exterior area in need of some greenery.
Phoenix roebelenii, also called pygmy date palm, is another option if you want a palm that isn’t going to grow too large. This dwarf grower can be purchased as a single or multi trunk topped with delicately feathered foliage. This palm definitely has a different look from the Areca and Cat palm but all provide an attractive pop of exotic flair.
Not a big fan or the palm look? Perhaps the broad arching leaves of the Bird of Paradise would be more to your liking. We always carry the white bird in the greenhouse as a bright-light loving houseplant but we will also be carrying a few orange birds as well. Both varieties have exquisite form and foliage and if provided with enough light should bloom.
If you have found yourself unenthused with your exterior space, I guarantee you can find something to revitalize it with at Tallahassee Nurseries.