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16 Of The Best Hardy Tropical Plants For Zone 7 To Grow In Your Garden

Are you looking to find tropical plants for zone 7? Wondering which plants are hardy enough to survive in this area? It’s very important to choose the right plants for the climate in which you live. Luckily, my guide can help.

I wanted to share my top tips on the subject, as I live in Raleigh, North Carolina — part of zone 7. I have a lot of friends who struggle with their gardening, so I wanted to pass on the bit of knowledge I have gained.

According to A Nest With A Yard, the right landscaping can even increase the value of your home, so it is worth researching. Keep reading for more info and my top tips!

How To Grow Hardy Tropical Plants In Zone 7

Before we get into the specific plants that are best for this climate, there are some important things to think about when gardening zone 7. Here are a few simple tips that will help you to get better results.

Ensure that the plants you want to use are suitable for the size of your yard. Some hardy tropical-looking plants can grow very big and this can mean a lot of maintenance.

Think carefully about colors and how dramatic you want your zone 7 garden to look. Colorful plants that are also hardy can be tough to find.

Use rocks and other affordable and simple design ideas, such as those in this list. This can be a way to complement the look of your plants, but it can also help with irrigation.

Don’t be afraid to keep things simple. It is normally better to choose a few different types of plants to make for a more cohesive landscape. However, a variety of plants means that you’ll need to employ a variety of care techniques.

Flowers For Zone 7


Hibiscus #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #flowers

Hibiscus is the preferred food of sloths, as well as a beautiful flower! It grows in Central America, among other places, but it is hardy enough for zone 7. Plus, they are a way to add some color to your landscape. These beautiful white and red flowers can liven up your yard.

Maypop (Passionflower)

Maypop or Passionflower #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #flowers #vines
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The maypop (also known as the passionflower or wild passion vine) is a perennial vine. The trailing stems are where you’ll find the big gorgeous flowers.

Their stamens provide an interesting look and the deep purple tone is quite unique for a hardy flower. You can train the vine to climb up backyard structures and other design features in your yard.


Azalea #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #flowers #bush

Azaleas are hardy shrubs in the Ericaceae family. They bloom throughout the spring and give a great dash of color that can complement some of the greener plants in your yard.

They’re fantastic for zone 7, as you can plant them in the shade and they will still bloom beautifully. Just keep them out of direct sunlight.

Trees Suited To Zone 7

Crape Myrtle

Crape Myrtle #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #flowers #tree

The technical name of the crape myrtle tree is Lagerstroemia. This genus features about 50 different types of trees that grow in warmer areas all over the world, including Asia and parts of Australia.

Their suitability for hot climates makes them a good contender for zone 7 gardening. Their ruffled petals and flowering branches can create blocks of color.

Fig Tree

Fig Tree #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #tree

Fig trees are notoriously low maintenance and are perfect for a zone 7 garden that you don’t have loads of time to maintain. The figs they produce can also be enjoyed as home produce.

These trees are part of the mulberry family. They’re disease-resistant, but be careful of wasps, which may be attracted when they flower.

Palm Tree

Palm Tree #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #tree

Palm trees are often associated with tropical islands, but they can play an important part in your zone 7 landscaping design.

Palm trees are technically anything in the Arecaceae family, which includes climbing trees, shrubs, or trees. They do flower from time to time, but these hardy trees do a fantastic job of giving a bright green glow to your yard.

Palm Tree Store

If you want to know more, head over to my post about hardy palm trees for zone 7.

Banana Tree

Banana tree #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #tree

Continuing the tropical theme, why not incorporate a banana tree into your landscape? Technically, there are 400 different species of banana trees.

The Cavendish banana plant will grow in zone 7 and this is the variety that provides most of our eating bananas. They can be purely decorative, though. Be patient — it can take three years for your banana tree to produce any flowers!

Lush Greenery For Zone 7

Alocasia (Elephant Ear)

Alocasia, elephant ear #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #elephantEar

The alocasia plant is more commonly known as the elephant ear plant, due to the fact that it has large leaves that look a bit like…well…an elephant’s ear! They could also be described as heart-shaped.

These plants provide some deep green tones for your landscaping needs. They can spread out from two to 10 feet and are perfect for filling in any empty spaces in your garden.

Colocasia (Elephant Ear)

Colocasia Elephant Ear #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #elephantEar

The colocasia is another type of elephant ear. These are a little different from alocasia — they have thick tubers and also droop a bit more than the alocasia variety.

These plants can grow up to nine feet tall! The leaves can get absolutely huge and, occasionally, some varieties even provide flowers.

Gunnera (Giant Rhubarb)

Gunnera, Giant Rhubarb #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips
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Gunnera plants, also known as the giant rhubarb, aren’t actually related to rhubarb in any way, but they certainly do look like a massive version.

There’s something very Jurassic Park about the look of the gunnera plant, which can grow up to four meters across! They can fill huge areas in your yard and don’t require a lot of maintenance. Just make sure you have plenty of space!


Fern #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #fern
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Ferns can actually help you continue this prehistoric look in your zone 7 garden. They don’t need a lot of maintenance either and can actually spread very easily throughout your yard. They reproduce via spores, rather than seeds or flowers.

Ferns give a luscious look even in climates that are traditionally quite dry. Check out some fern landscaping ideas here.

Sugar Cane

Sugar cane #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips

Sugar cane is one of the more unusual plants to make it on my list, but it is perfectly possible to grow it in zone 7. If you are looking for something that grows more up, horizontally, sugar cane could be for you. It needs lots of sunlight, so it is perfect for areas with no shade.


Bamboo #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #bamboo

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Bamboo certainly is hardy. It can tolerate loads of different soil types and, although it needs lots of water, it can grow incredibly quickly. Bamboo makes for an interesting talking point in your landscaping, too. Bamboo isn’t just meant for Asia!

Sumptuous Succulents


Yukka (Yucca filamentosa)
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Succulents, like the yucca, are fleshy and evergreen, so they’ll look good all year. The leaves are long and shaped like swords, but, perhaps the most appealing feature of the yucca is their white flowers. They grow all over the Americas and just about anywhere else hot!


Agave #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #succulents #succulentIdeas #succulentDecor

Agave is very well known for its syrup that can be used in a variety of food, drinks, and even medicines. They’re fantastic for zone 7 and need very little in the way of water to survive.

Their big, luscious clusters of leaves can provide a feature point in your garden. Plant them on their own in pots or as part of a bigger bed of plants.


Opuntia #plants #hardy #garden #gardening #gardenTips  #succulents #succulentIdeas #succulentDecor

Opuntia is closely related to the other succulents on this list, but it is not as widely used in gardens and landscaping. Its unusual fleshy appearance is sometimes combined with its purple-looking fruit, known as the prickly pear.

Opuntia’s unconventional look and the fact the leaves grow in seemingly random directions give it a very different vibe to most of the other plants on this list.

Wrapping Up The Best Tropical Plants For Zone 7

Have you decided on your favorite tropical plants for zone 7? Which ones do you want to use for your landscape design?

I wanted to share everything I’ve learned from my home landscaping and help others in zone 7. It can be tough if you don’t know which type of plants are hardy enough for the area.

Have you enjoyed my list? Feel free to post your thoughts and suggestions in the comments or even share the article with friends who might find it useful.

Some of the most beautiful hardy tropical plants for zone 7 to plant in your garden #gardening #flowers #garden #zone7 #backyardLandscaping #backyardLandscapingIdeas #landscaping #cheapLandscapingIdeas #landscape
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About The Author

Nadya Jones

Nadya is a writer, entrepreneur, and designer based in Raleigh. She writes in her blog, the one you are visiting right now, where she shares her love for landscaping, gardening, and outdoor design. Her husband Brett provides her with a lot of inspiration and behind-the-scenes content. Together, they work on creating beautiful outdoor spaces that serve as an extension of their home and inspire others to do the same. If you are interested in landscaping, gardening, or outdoor design, be sure to check out the blog! Also, follow Nadya on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Flickr!

4 thoughts on “16 Of The Best Hardy Tropical Plants For Zone 7 To Grow In Your Garden”

  1. Thank you! I’m designing a nook in my backyard away from all the traffic. I want it to me a sort of sanctuary where I can getaway and meditate. Nothing like a tropical feel to help me zone out the world and tune into the spiritual.

  2. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with us, very helpful for a couple living in OK and new to the zoning information. We are two amateurs in gardening trying to grow something 😁

  3. This was a great article. A lot of these plants I already knew of but wouldn’t have immediately come to mind for a tropical garden. It was smartly written by a beautiful and talented lady.


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