Creating a Tropical Oasis, In Your Own Backyard!

Forest Stream Waterfall fountain

Is your backyard overgrown, unmanageable and unattractive? Do avoid spending time there, because you find it depressing? Revamp your backyard, and use these wild overgrown plants to create a tropical jungle paradise setting for your backyard. Use the tangled mess of plants to create a beautiful and relaxing environment that you will enjoy spending time in, and perhaps even entertaining!

You certainly do not need to live in the tropics to create this type of garden setting. By using the messy garden setting you already have, adding a few jungle-like plants, and your imagination, you can create an exciting and wonderful backyard. You do need to be an expert in plant growing; basically you just need a sunny location and well drained and fertile soil to create this garden style. Also consider adding a waterfall, like the natural element, waterfalls will create the perfect calm outdoor space.

There are many jungle-like plants that are hardy and strong, and can be grown in non-tropical environments. These are also usually very easy to care for. These plants include ferns, hostas, bamboo, palms, begonias, and rhododendron, hibiscus, and ginger plants. Research how to care for these plants before you plant them, this way you can properly care and maintain the plants.

When creating a jungle design, the key is good soil drainage, and packing the foliage close together. By packing plants with strong foliage together you can create the “jungle” look without using tropical plants if you do not desire to do so. You should create good fertile soil by turning in organic matter and manure. Once the soil is ready, you can begin to plant. Incorporate a variety of plants that have different colors, forms, and textures. Focus on the plants with foliage over woody plants, as these are more common in jungles. Drama will be created by mixing dramatic foliage with beautiful blooms.

When planting begins, plant the taller items first, like the palms and bamboos. These plants will make up the backdrop, as well as provide shade for the smaller plants. Nest plant the ferns, hostas, and cannas. You can also add plants that vine, but make sure it is not a type that can take over the garden, suffocating the other plants. Adding plants that have natural themes, such as the Bamboo Planter can truly bring your outdoor space to life as a tropical oasis.

After the plants are well established, they will require little maintenance besides watering. Weeding and pruning are not needed often, as these take away from the naturalness of the setting. Adding mulch to the floor will help to retain water, as well as keep weeds from infesting your plants. Mulch also provides nutrients to your plants. If you are in a very cold region, it may be best to consider planting some tropical plants into containers so they can be brought indoors for the winter. Most tropical varieties have no issue adjusting to containers, and this way you can winter them through and take them back out once the weather turns warm again.

Containers are great for adding plants to small spaces as well, allowing you to have a jungle theme with little outdoor space available. Choose containers that are decorative and exciting to add to the tropical feeling, using bold color choices are another good idea. Once you have completed your jungle setting, consider adding pathways, as this can be interesting or exciting for exploration. This is especially true for homes with children, pathways allow them to explore and discover new plants. Consider making a path lead to a clearing, where you place a playhouse for them!

By: Susan Soler of the Team