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6 Tropical Landscape Design Ideas to Upgrade Your Lawn

The tropical rainforests cover less than 3% of the Earth, yet they’re home to more than half of the land animal species. It’s a no-brainer why a homeowner would want to bring this paradise home with landscaping.

Tropical gardens are a growing trend among homeowners trying to replicate the lush feeling of their Hawaii or tropical Asian island holidays.

Incorporating tropical elements can help you create a private tropical paradise in your yard. You can enjoy the same relaxing, tropical feel without the hassle of traveling. Below are some tropical landscape design ideas that are sure to make your garden a focal point of your home.

1. Surround Yourself with Tropical Plants

Tropical plants and trees add a lush and exotic feel to any garden. These plants are known for their large, vibrant leaves and colorful flowers, and they can create a tropical oasis in any backyard. Many tropical plants and trees can add beauty and interest to your yard, but keep in mind these plants may be expensive and may not thrive in every climate. Before investing in any of these, be sure to research which plants will thrive in your environment.

Bird of Paradise

Bird of paradise plants can be grown both indoors and outdoors. They are known for their stunning, brightly colored flowers that resemble the head of a bird. The plant also features bold, glossy leaves.


With their vibrant colors and dense growth habit, cordyline plants can make a bold, beautiful addition to your tropical landscape design.


Ferns are known for their delicate, lacy leaves. They are easy to care for and can thrive in a variety of environments. These plants can add a touch of elegance and greenery to your space

Banana Tree

Banana trees are a classic tropical plant that can add beauty and functionality to your yard. These tropical plants feature long, broad leaves. They also produce tasty, nutritious fruit that you can enjoy during the summer.


While bamboo is not typically considered a tropical plant, it can add a unique and exotic touch to your tropical landscape garden.


The passionflower is a beautiful and exotic tropical plant that is known for its striking flowers and unique, intricate patterns.

When looking for plants for your tropical garden, don’t limit yourself to plants usually found in hot areas. Focus on foliage with the visual characteristics of tropical plants such as large leaves, colorful greenery, and vibrant blooms. If you want to add to the beauty of your yard, you can ask a professional landscaper to help you choose plants that attract hummingbirds and butterflies.

2. Install Water Features

A tropical landscape design can’t be complete without an element of water. Water features can add a touch of beauty and tranquility to any tropical yard. Some ideas for water features in a tropical yard include:

Small Pond or Water Garden

A pond or water garden can add a serene and peaceful atmosphere to your tropical yard. You can plant colorful water lilies and other aquatic plants to add to the tropical vibe.

Waterfall or Fountain

A waterfall or fountain can add the soothing sound of trickling water to your yard. You can choose a fountain that features tropical-themed designs, such as palm trees or exotic birds.

Swimming Pool

If you have the space and budget for it, a swimming pool can be a great addition to a tropical yard. You can choose from a variety of shapes and sizes, and add tropical plants and palm trees around the pool for a true island vibe.

Koi Pond

Koi ponds are a popular water feature in tropical yards. Koi are colorful fish that are native to Asia, and they can add a beautiful and serene touch to your yard.

A Stream or Babbling Brook

If you have a large yard, you can create a small stream or a babbling brook that flows through your garden. This can add a natural and serene touch to your yard. You can also plant tropical plants and flowers along the banks of the stream.

These water features can enhance the beauty and add a touch of luxury to your tropical yard. Choose the one that best suits your space, budget, and personal preferences

3. Incorporate Rocks into Your Tropical Landscape Design

Rocks can add texture, color, and interest to a tropical landscape. They can also serve a functional purpose, such as creating a border or retaining wall. Here are a few ways to incorporate rocks into your tropical landscape:

Use Rocks as Accents in Your Garden Beds

You can scatter small rocks around plants to create a natural, textured look. Larger rocks can be placed among plants as focal points or to create a sense of movement.

Create a Rock Garden

This is a garden bed dedicated to rocks. These rocks will provide a natural and attractive backdrop for your tropical plants. You can use different types and sizes of rocks to create a variety of textures and visual interests.

Utilize Rocks as a Focal Point in Your Landscape

You can use a large boulder or a group of rocks arranged in an interesting formation. This is a great way of adding authentic texture to your outdoor area.

Create Borders or Edging

Place larger rocks along the edges of garden beds or walkways to create a defined border. This can add structure to your landscape and help keep plants in place.

Use Rocks as Bases for Water Features

Rocks can be used to create a natural-looking base for water features such as fountains or waterfalls. This can add a relaxing and soothing element to your tropical landscape.

Include Rocks into Your Hardscaping

Use rocks to create patios, walkways, or retaining walls. Hardscaping can add texture and interest to your outdoor space and create a cohesive look with the rest of your landscape.

Adding rocks to your tropical landscape design can create visual interest in your yard. Be sure to choose the right size and type of rock for your specific landscape needs.

4. Add Whimsical Elements

Incorporating whimsical elements into your garden can add a touch of fun and creativity to your outdoor space. Some ideas for tropical-themed garden art include:

Statues and Sculptures

These can add a touch of elegance and interest to your garden. You can choose sculptures that depict tropical plants or animals, such as palm trees, parrots, or turtles.


Using unique and colorful containers can add a pop of color and texture to your garden. Look for containers that feature tropical patterns or colors, such as bold greens and blues, to tie in with your tropical theme.

Vintage Items

Adding vintage items to your garden can give it a unique and eclectic feel. For a tropical garden, you could use vintage items such as old boat oars as plant stakes, or an old wooden canoe as a planter.

Remember to vary the sizes, shapes, and colors of your garden art to create visual interest and balance in your garden. With a little creativity and imagination, you can create a tropical oasis that is truly one-of-a-kind.

5. Fit in Outdoor Lights

Outdoor lighting can be a great way to enhance the beauty and enjoyment of your garden, especially in a tropical setting. When it comes to adding outdoor lighting to a tropical landscape design, there are a few key things to keep in mind.

First, consider the overall aesthetic and feel of the garden. Tropical gardens are often lush and vibrant, so the lighting should complement this look and feel. Consider using warm, soft lighting to create a cozy and inviting atmosphere.

One popular option for outdoor lighting is to use string lights. These can be hung from trees, poles, or other structures to create a festive and inviting atmosphere.

You can also use lanterns or outdoor tiki torches to add a tropical touch. These can be placed on tables, along walkways, or in other strategic locations to provide both ambiance and practical lighting.

Be sure to consider the type of light bulbs they use when choosing outdoor lighting fixtures. LED bulbs are a popular choice because they are energy-efficient and long-lasting. They also come in a wide range of colors and styles, so you can find the perfect lighting for your lawn.

6. Build Elements of Fun and Entertainment

Once you have everything together, you can incorporate several elements to bring a sense of fun and entertainment to your tropical yard. Some ideas to consider include:

Outdoor Kitchen

Not only can an outdoor kitchen provide a beautiful and relaxing space, but it can also be a practical and functional area for cooking and entertaining. In a tropical garden, an outdoor kitchen can be designed to blend in with the natural surroundings, using materials such as bamboo, stone, and natural wood.

Fire Pit or Fireplace

This feature can be a great addition to modern landscape designs. It can provide warmth on cooler evenings while creating a beautiful focal point in your tropical garden.

Lounge Area

Creating a comfortable lounge area in your backyard can provide a serene and peaceful atmosphere for you to unwind and recharge. For a tropical landscape design, you can place the lounge area near a pool or water feature for a refreshing and cooling atmosphere.

Tiki Bar

Tiki bars are typically associated with a tropical theme. They can add a fun and exotic atmosphere to your garden. To create a private tiki bar in your garden, invest in some tiki-themed decor, such as masks, statues, and carved wooden totems, to give your space a truly authentic tiki bar feel.

Enhance Your Tropical Landscape Design

After you've created a tropical getaway in your own yard with these tropical landscape design ideas, it's time to ensure your entire outdoor space matches its greatness.

With Heroes Lawn Care services, you can enhance your lawn to complement the beauty of your tropical paradise.

Our professional maintenance services will keep your yard lush and vibrant, allowing you to enjoy your slice of paradise all year round. Contact us today to learn how we can enhance your tropical oasis to the next level!

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