Six Plants That Will Transport You to the Tropics

Yes, you can grow a banana tree in the Hamptons!

Love the foliage and all the frills of tropical plants? Wishing your backyard plot could look more like a Caribbean getaway? Surprisingly, many hot-weather-loving favorites from points farther south are hardy on the East End, so if you’re looking for a little lushness in the garden, give them a try.


  • If you’re fond of hardy tropicals but don’t completely trust Mother Nature, bring them inside for the winter before the first frost.
  • Mulch or leaf litter is always a good idea for protecting plants that are marginally hardy in our region.
  • Be sure to use these “exotics” in cut-flower arrangements, including their wonderful foliage. A vase of Farfugium leaves looks terrific on its own and will last a long time.
  • Many of these plants grow rapidly, so learn how to propagate them, and share cuttings with friends.
  • Regularly apply a good organic fertilizer, such as fish emulsion, and give some to your houseplants while you’re at it.

The print version of this article appeared with the headline: Tropical Punch.