The Tropical Look

An Encyclopedia of Dramatic Landscape Plants
by Robert Lee Riffle

Shipping to the U.S. only. Please see our International FAQ for more information.


Also available at

Meant primarily for gardeners in USDA zones 8–10, The Tropical Look encompasses most of the southern U.S. and the West Coast. This groundbreaking encyclopedia of lush plants will also be useful to gardeners in other zones who are interested in growing tropical-looking plants (as opposed to strictly tropical plants, which...
Read More

Published By Timber Press

Format Paperback


Number Of Pages 524

Publication Date 03/27/2009

ISBN 9781604690835

Dimensions 8.25 inches x 11 inches

“It’s margarita time! If you’re looking for a banana that can bounce back from zero-degree temperatures or plants that merely look tropical, this book has them, along with 400 color photographs.” —The Boston Globe

“Gardeners and horticultural professionals alike will find much to be excited about in this expansive and significant resource. Riffle’s effort will contribute immensely to the development of many fantastic indoor and outdoor displays around the country. . . . Timely, comprehensive, and beautifully produced.” —American Gardener

“The essential book for anyone interested in tropical plants.” —Newark Star-Ledger

“This compendium of nearly 2000 plants is an excellent resource for learning about hundreds of tropical plants and their cultural needs.” —Orchids

“In the context of the scores of books on horticulture that I own or have seen, Riffle’s comprehensive work is ‘truly unique.’ . . . What makes this work so unusual is not so much its superb, lavish illustration, 409 color photos (their captions happily with Latin names). . . . but rather its inclusion of many horticulturally ‘obscene’ or little-known taxa treated only in the specialist literature. . . . This horticultural encyclopedia is destined to become a classic.” —Taxon

“Although The Tropical Look is directed for Zone 8 and higher, those of you with greenhouses, or who are adventurous may want to try the unusual as annuals or ‘die-back’ plants.” —Garden Spot

“Who knew an encyclopedia could be so much fun!” —Gardening on the Gulf Coast

“From Acacia to Zombia, this hefty volume lists basic descriptions for nearly 2,000 plants—and color photographs of many. The author shares his extensive knowledge enthusiastically.” —Neil Sperry’s Gardens

“One of the most excellent sources for unearthing specific plants and determining whether or not they will suit your needs and growing conditions.” —Palatka Daily News

“This is an informative guide of nearly 2,000 such [tropical] plants that can add drama and excitement to the garden.” —Manchester (CT) Journal Inquirer