My name is Eddie Walker. I started back in 2004 with a flat piece of land that was used for farming. I live in South Mills, North Carolina, just 45 minutes inland from the Outer Banks and in Zone 8a most years. My passion is gardening. I’ve always loved the warm weather and tropical designs that I had seen in Florida and farther south, and I am the owner of Walker’s Palms and Desert Plants. There has always been skepticism about growing palm trees this far north, but with the right selection of species it is possible to have that tropical-looking landscape in your own backyard! Gardening can be relaxing to the mind and soul and has been very helpful to me.
A formal line of trees leads up to the house, not hinting at the tropical splendors waiting ahead.
A hardy, lovely looking palm tree. This is Chinese windmill palm (Trachycarpus fortunei, Zones 8–11) and works wonderfully to bring a tropical look to nontropical climates.
Despite the tropical look, it does get cold and snowy in this garden! But the palms can survive anyway.
A beautiful pool surrounded by lush tropical plantings.
The bold leaves of fatsia (Fatsia japonica, Zones 8–10) contrast with the finer textured leaves around it.
A beautiful water feature flanked by two enormous sego palms (Cycas revoluta, Zones 8–11). Sego palms aren’t true palms but are actually a kind of cycad, an ancient group of plants. Their bold, dark green, frondlike leaves look wonderful here.
When you create a tropical garden, you need a tiki-themed seating area!
A wide view of the garden, showing the rich diversity of plants and places to relax and enjoy the beauty. Toward the center of the shot, notice a huge agave plant sending up a truly enormous flower spike. Agaves die after flowering, but what a dramatic way to go!
What a magical spot. Who wouldn’t want to lie back in that hammock, look out at the garden, and listen to the water feature?
Have a garden you’d like to share?
Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!
To submit, send 5-10 photos to GPOD@finegardening.com along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.
If you want to send photos in separate emails to the GPOD email box that is just fine.
You don’t have to be a professional garden photographer – check out our garden photography tips!
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