Design The Art of Landscape

At Tropic Greenery, the art of Landscape design is one of the passions of our lives. We’ve lived it and breathed it for two generations and are now teaching it to a third. After over thirty years designing and maintaining landscape we have developed a unique and comprehensive philosophy.


Our design philosophy revolves around four main principles. The first two are the age old maxims of landscaping; Simplicity & Restraint. The second two involve the landscapes relation to the client; Functionality & Sustainability.

Simplicity & Restraint

First it must be understood that simplicity and restraint do not mean “boring or mundane”. Rather, it refers to keeping with the scope of the landscape. Whatever the design theme is it should be kept throughout the landscape. The color scheme of each area should also have continuity. Simplicity and restraint is like the virtue of humility applied to landscaping. It is using plants and methods that are proven to work and not the latest fad that is sure to come and go.

Functionality & Sustainability

Landscapes are meant to involve the client or homeowner. It must have a purpose or a “function” that draws people into it. Whether it is aesthetics, an outdoor living area, or a winding path that leads to a secluded hideaway every layout must have a use to it.

The long term viability of the landscape is also important. It should be “sustainable” and not need excessive maintenance or pest control. It should be planned considering the long term. What will it look like mature? What will the maintenance costs be? Proper plant selection and placement is key to this principle.

Computer Generated Design Image

Do you find it hard to visualize that flat design plan? Well,  we can create a three dimensional picture with our design program. See the example below, on the left is the computer generated picture on the right is the installed landscape!

Specialty Theme Design

Below are just a few of the many theme designs we have created for an entire landscape or special area.We offer various interpretations and combinations of these and other design themes according to the preference of the client. Visit our Photo Gallery Page to view some of the following.

Classic and Specialty Landscapes

Sustainable Living Landscapes

  • Urban Homesteads
  • Organic Gardens
  • Citrus Orchards
  • Agriculture & Rare Fruit Collections
  • Edible Landscapes

Environmentally Friendly Landscapes

  • Xeriscapes
  • Rock Gardens
  • Sea Gardens
  • Florida Native Ecosystems
  • Low Maintenance Landscapes
  • Butterfly Gardens
  • Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Mulch

Landscape Lighting
Tropic Greenery can design a light show that will highlight your gardens, light your walkways and accent your water features. Pictures speak better than words click to view our Landscape Light Photo Gallery.

Landscape Installation
Tropic Greenery has over thirty years of landscape installation experience. We have the experience, the knowledge, manpower and equipment to transform your yard into a garden! Whether a simple design or a large intricate installation let us handle it for you.

We let our customers speak for us!

——– Original Message ——–

Subject: National Joe Appreciation Day

Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2013 05:50:35 -0700 (PDT)
From: Shirley
To: [email protected]

Dear Joe Alf,

Fifteen years ago, our home was new construction, and the newly installed landscaping was the typical one found throughout this area. At the time, the HOA required twelve trees for our property, two of which had to be those oaks that line the street but the other ten could be oaks, washingtonias, or queens. We chose queens.

Over the years, Michael and I struggled to create a yard with depth and interest but we worked in frustration with the redundancy of what felt like more and more of “the same old, same old” choices for our area. We were seriously stuck in inertia.

Fast forward to last summer 2012, we witnessed the transformation of our neighbor’s yard. Tropic Greenery was performing a magic spell and we were truly captivated. That’s when we met you, Joe. We met your son and crew, and even met your dog…all so wonderful! You came over to our yard, and stunned us with such creativity! Next, your son drew up the design, and the rest is a beautiful history. You gave us something akin to the fourth dimension as opposed to an ever-continuous “Flatland” (Edwin Abbott).

We had issues that you addressed and fixed; however, there’s especially one, which deserves recognition. When it’s evening, and during the low dark of wintertime, cars coming out of the cul-de-sac facing the front of our home would streak headlights across our windows. Well, no more! Our home no longer carries like a fishbowl.

Two more special mentions…our neighborhood newsletter gave rave reviews to the landscaping you provided us, and people who don’t even live in our neighborhood stop by with compliments. You worked with what we already had and blended the old with the new…so it looks as if it were always this way. They think we have extraordinary green thumbs, but the reality is, we have YOU.

It is now springtime, eight months after Tropic Greenery performed its magic. Joe, it’s still captivatingly beautiful magic but the truth is, you gave us more than that. You’ve given us a dream come true, with a solid foundation that we can build upon in phases, coming back to you for even more creativity!

To make a plain and simple customer appreciation, we could say, “Tropic Greenery is awesome!” But you are better than awesome, and we offer no apology for the length for what’s written. Hopefully, it’s not too long a read.

Thank you, Tropic Greenery, more than either of us know how to say.

Sincerely, Michael and Shirley