Posts Tagged ‘Tropical plants’

In my travels over the course of this weekend, I found this simple  tropical planting combination outside of a new condo building. It follows basic rules of design and is simple enough that anyone can do it.  Placing the containers at the corner of the building helps soften hard edges of the structure while providing visual interest at the same time.  The main entrance to the lobby was located outside of the picture to the right, so the large scale of the planting keeps things in balance.

The container choice itself is brilliant in its subtlety.  The neutral dark charcoal color keeps the focus off the containers and allows the plants to make the statement. By using a lighter gray beach stone, the installer of these containers kept the palette similar but still interesting.  The stone size is also in correct proportion to the containers and plants. They all lend a tropical, summery feel to the entrance and also have an interesting color focus that isn’t found in the surrounding landscape.

Trio Of Palms

The only thing I would do differently with this combination is switch the position of the two smallest planters.  This would allow the purple foliage to be more in contrast with the light stone veneer of the wall while the silver-blue foliage of the fan palm would be highlighted by the dark background of the outside landscaping and porte-cochere.

Article and photography by lilyofthevalley for Jeffrey Erb Landscape Design

Read Full Post »

My family loves to migrate to Sarasota, Florida over the winter months. I too have made this journey many times. Besides the pristine white beaches, seemingly endless new construction and island hopping  to keep you occupied, one of my favorite gardens lies right in the heart of Sarasota. The Marie Selby Botanic gardens is truly a gem and is well worth a visit. Created by Marie Selby herself, the now 14 acre grounds capture her love for gardening.

Path through the Mangrove Trees

Breathtaking Banyan trees dotted around the property have orchids placed cleverly among the branches to heighten the drama of the gardens. Spanish moss in the overhead canopy takes you back to a bygone era with a simple wisp of the breeze. The formal gardens and central lawn somehow connect seamlessly to the surrounding naturalized clumps of Mangrove trees and packs of seagulls resting in the adjacent beaches.

The Giant Orchid Sculpture at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

 The glass conservatories are home to an array of unusual orchid species. With a focus on epiphytic plants, the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens has a wealth of articles and research dedicated to orchids, bromeliads and a host of tropical plants. Their website is an excellent resource for tropical plant care and culture. Visit them here: http://www.selby.org 

A Fringed Cattleya Orchid inside the Glass Houses at Marie Selby

  Marie Selby was tied to the oil industry through her father as well as her husband. The successful Selby Oil and Gas Company merged with the Texas Company halfway through the 20th century to form what we now know as Texaco. Marie and her husband, William, were very influential residents in the Sarasota community. For a more complete history, read about them here: http://www.sarasotahistoryalive.com/people/william-g.-and-marie-selby/ . I wonder what her response would have been to the oil spill of 2010!


Read Full Post »