We were influenced by the many lush tropical gardens in our coastal neighbourhood and overseas, too, she says. Tropical plants are also amazingly hardy. It also helps that Bilgola is full of red volcanic soil so everything grows really well! - Jolene's Gardening
You don't need to live near the equator to enjoy the beauty of tropical plants. As long as the temperatures are hot and humid, tropical plants will reward you with colorful foliage and flowers all summer long. This grouping includes Alocasia, coleus, impatiens, African mask plant, elephant's ear, and Cuphea.
Use Bromeliads of different colors and heights and "layer" them as shown here. Bromeliads do well in full sun on the cooler windward side of the Hawaiian Islands........on the dry Lee side, they need to be in part shade.