50 Unique Tropical Flowers

The world is home to an enormous variety of plant life, including countless tropical flowers and botanical wonders. What’s great is you can still enjoy these stunning plants inside your home or garden during the warmer months. This list brings you 50 stunning types of tropical flowers with photos and interesting facts.

Tropical Flowers With Pictures and Care Tips

50 Types of Tropical Flowers:

1. Amaryllis

Bright red tropical Amaryllis flowers in bloom

Not to be confused with plants from the Amaryllis genus, the Hippeastrum genus of the Amaryllidaceae plant family contains about 90 species and over 600 hybrids of bulbous flowering plants that are commonly called amaryllis flowers. These tropical flowers are native to Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, and Brazil. The cherry-red varieties have become popular to grow and gift around the holidays.

Scientific Name:Hippeastrum
USDA Growing Zones:7 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Partial sun
Flowering Colors:Red, burgundy, pink, orange, salmon, yellow-green, and white
Flowering Season:Spring or summer but can be force-bloomed in winter

2. Paperflower or Lesser Bougainvillea

Paperflower or Lesser Bougainvillea showcasing deep purple flowers against green leaves

Native to eastern South America, the Bougainvillea glabra is a species of climbing shrub in the Nyctaginaceae plant family and one of the most commonly grown types of bougainvillea. They produce large clusters of blossoms with large, showy, bright, purplish, and pink flowers bracts that surround smaller, white flowers. Grown as hedges, the lesser bougainvillea is quite striking when it is in bloom, as the bright blossoms ultimately overtake the dark-green foliage.

Scientific Name:Bougainvillea glabra
USDA Growing Zones:9 (with winter protection) to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Showy pinkish-purple bracts with small white flowers
Flowering Season:Year-round in native climate. Summer to fall in cooler climates.

3. Garden Cosmos or Mexican Aster

A cluster of vibrant pink tropical Garden Cosmos flowers with yellow centers growing in a garden

These flowers are native to Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize; the Cosmos bipinnatus belongs to the daisy plant family (Asteraceae) and is, perhaps, the most popular variety of cosmos to grow from seeds in the garden. This herbaceous flowering plant produces cheerful 8-petaled blossoms in various pretty colors with prominent golden-yellow pom-poms at their centers.

Scientific Name:Cosmos bipinnatus
USDA Growing Zones:2 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red, pink, purple, white, and yellow
Flowering Season:Summer through fall

4. Anthurium or Flamingo Flower

Lipstick red Anthurium plants in bloom

Native to the rainforests of Columbia and Ecuador, the Anthurium andraeanum is a flowering plant species belonging to the Araceae plant family. In their native habitat, these epiphytes grow from the sides of trees or rocky outcroppings, primarily pulling nutrients in from the air and water rather than through their roots and soil. They have lush, broad foliage, producing heart-shaped pinkish-red spathes with a central yellow-white spadix.  

Scientific Name:Anthurium andraeanum
USDA Growing Zones:11 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red or pinkish-red
Flowering Season:Year-round in three-month intervals

5. Bush Lily

A flowering Bush Lily showcasing funnel-shaped tropical orange flowers against deep green foliage

Native to South Africa, the Clivia miniata is a rhizomatic flowering plant belonging to the Amaryllidaceae family. The plant has also been naturalized in Mexico and is commonly grown in gardens in Australia and New Zealand. This plant produces thick, strappy leaves that span out from a central stem in two opposite rows, almost like fans or wings. The plant produces bright-orange funnel-shaped flowers that are quite ornate and beautiful. In some rare flower cultivars, the blooms are a buttery yellow hue.

Scientific Name:Clivia miniata
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Orange and rare yellow flowers
Flowering Season:March or April (later for less mature plants)

6. Blood Lily

Red globe shaped flower heads of the Blood Lily plant in bloom

Belonging to the Amaryllidaceae plant family, the blood lily has a broad native range, including the Arabian Peninsula, most of Sub-Saharan Africa, and Seychelles. Blood lilies grow from rhizomatic bulbs and produce false stems that are made of leaves. At the top of these closely wound leaves, they produce a globe-shaped cluster of 10 to 200 small, individual flowers that range from a fiery red to a faded pinkish-red hue. Certain species of this plant are highly toxic and have been used to make poisons for fishing hooks or arrows.

Scientific Name:Scadoxus multiflorus
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun to partial shade
Flowering Colors:Scarlet, pinkish-red, or orange-red
Flowering Season:Late summer through fall

7. Jewel Pagoda Ginger

Jewel Pagoda Ginger plants flowers growing in a tropical environment

Native to Jawa, Zingiber neglectum, commonly called jewel pagoda, is one of nearly 200 ginger plants belonging to the Zingiberaceae plant family. This family contains the true gingers, which have a prominent place in the culinary arts thanks to the unique zing of their aromatic flavors. This specific species of ginger plant is most beloved for its ornate and fleshy cone-shaped flowers that feature ruffles of lime-green petals rimmed with a fiery red.

Scientific Name:Zingiber neglectum
USDA Growing Zones:9 and up
Sunlight Requirements:Partial sun
Flowering Colors:Lime green rimmed with red
Flowering Season:Spring and summer

8.’Ohe Naupaka

'Ohe Naupaka plants growing on a tropical island close to the seas with mountains seen in the distance against a deep blue sky with scattered clouds

The ‘ohe naupaka is a flowering shrub that belongs to the Goodeniaceae plant family and is native to Hawaii’s Oahu and Kauai islands and endemic to the entire state. The shrub can grow to be up to 12 feet tall. With lush, green, ovate foliage, the ‘ohe naupaka produces long, tube, or trumpet-shaped yellow flowers with a slight flare at their tips and purplish, almost-black fruit.

Scientific Name:Scaevola glabra
USDA Growing Zones:10 and 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun (at least 6 to 8 hours daily)
Flowering Colors:Yellow
Flowering Season:Year-round in native habitat, summer in cooler climates

9. Hawaiian Hibiscus or Chinese Hibiscus

A cluster of exotic looking yellow and orange Hawaiian Hibiscus flowers growing in a tropical setting

The Hibiscus rosa-sinensis belongs to the Hibsceae tribe of the Malvaceae plant family, and its common names include the Chinese Hibiscus, Hawaiian hibiscus, China rose, rose mallow, and shoeblack plant. Although the Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is widely cultivated throughout the tropics, its native range is relatively small as it originally comes from the volcanic island nation of Vanuatu. It features exotic-looking, papery, trumpet-shaped flowers in fiery tropical colors with prominent red and yellow stamens.

Scientific Name:Hibiscus rosa-sinensis
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red, yellow, apricot, orange, white, and several shades of pink
Flowering Season:Year-round in warm climates, late summer to fall in cooler climates

10. Bird of Paradise

A single tropical Bird of Paradise flower in bloom with spikes of range and purple

Native to South Africa, the Strelitzia reginae is a flowering plant species belonging to the Strelitziaceae plant family. Its unique bird-shaped blossoms can most easily be recognized. Birds of paradise can be cultivated indoors outside of their natural habitats, but they can be tricky to care for. They do not bloom until they are three or four years old and simply won’t bloom if they do not receive enough sunlight and the proper nutrients. Coaxing an indoor bird of paradise into full bloom, however, can be a greatly rewarding experience for indoor gardeners.

Scientific Name:Strelitzia reginae
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun (at least 6 hours daily)
Flowering Colors:Predominantly bright orange with three blue petals and red accents
Flowering Season:Late winter to early spring in natural habitat

11. Sacred Lotus

A small group of pink Sacred Lotus flowers in bloom against large green leaves in the background

Nelumbo nucifera, commonly called the sacred lotus, is one of two living species of flowering aquatic plants comprising the Nelumbonaceae family. They have a relatively wide native range, growing naturally in India, Indochina, East Asia, Russia, and around the Caspian Sea. The sacred lotus seeds are impressively long-lasting; the oldest seeds known to have been successfully germinated and grown into plants were about 1,300 years old. For this reason, the sacred lotus has become a symbol of longevity.

Scientific Name:Nelumbo nucifera
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun (at least 6 hours daily)
Flowering Colors:Most often white with pink tips or accents, but also pink, red, yellow, blue, purple, and white
Flowering Season:June through August

12. False Bird of Paradise or Hanging Lobster Claw

Hanging Lobster Claw plants showcasing pendulous flowers that are deep red tinged with yellow and green

Native to parts of Central and South America, the Heliconia rostrata is one of nearly 200 flowering plants belonging to the Heliconaceae plant family. This plant is an excellent choice for growing in tropical gardens thanks to its impressive size, large banana-shaped leaves, and eye-catching flowers that give way to showy fruit. These plants can grow up to 6 feet tall, and their predominantly red flowers shaped like lobster claws hold nectar that attracts hummingbirds.

Scientific Name:Heliconia rostrata
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun to partial shade
Flowering Colors:Predominantly red marked with yellow and green at the tips
Flowering Season:Spring and summer

13. Orchids

Bright yellow tropical Orchids in bloom

All of the plants that we know as orchids belong to the Orchidaceae plant family, a highly diverse and widespread plant family that contains somewhere around 28,000 officially accepted species of orchids that come from a variety of regions all around the world. While many types of orchids come from tropical regions, others grow naturally in temperate zones and much cooler climates. About 70% of orchid species are epiphytes, meaning they have aerial roots that help them cling to trees instead of roots that hold them in the ground. Additionally, the appearance of their flowers and blossoms is highly varied, depending on the species.

Scientific Name:Orchidaceae
USDA Growing Zones:6 to 11 (depending on species)
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Almost every shade and combination of pink, red, blue, purple, green, yellow, orange, and white
Flowering Season:Winter, spring, summer, or fall, depending on the species

14. Scarlet Sage

A cluster of vibrant red Scarlet Sage flowers in bloom

Salvia splendens, commonly called scarlet sage, belongs to the Lamiaceae (sage) plant family and is native to Brazil, where it grows in the warm humidity at 6,600 to 9,800 feet. Its wild form grows to just over 4 feet in height, but more compact cultivars are much more popularly cultivated for growing in garden beds. They typically feature brilliant racemes of scarlet-red flowers that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Still, the flowers of cultivars also come in various other colors and combinations of colors.

Scientific Name:Salvia spendens
USDA Growing Zones:2 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Usually scarlet red but also pink, salmon, lavender, purple, blue, white, and color combinations
Flowering Season:Late spring to early fall

15. Star Flower or Egyptian Star Cluster

Star Flower or Egyptian Star Cluster plants in bloom with clusters of tiny red flowers with pink centers against deep green leaves

The Pentas lanceolata belongs to the Rubiaceae plant family and has a native range from Yemen to East Africa. This species is commonly called the star flower or Egyptian star cluster, about the five-petaled, star-like shape of the small flowers, which comprise the shrubby plant’s globe-shaped flower clusters. These beauties are a perfect choice if you wish to attract butterflies to your garden, and they can be grown as annuals in cooler climates.

Scientific Name:Pentas lanceolata
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Lilac, magenta, pink, or white
Flowering Season:Summer

16. King Protea

A single large King Protea flower in bloom showcasing pink petals with a white center surrounded by green leaves and foliage

The Protea cynaroides, commonly called the king protea, has the most prominent flower head of all species in the Protea genus in the Proteaceae plant family. It is both native to and the national flower of South Africa. The king protea is widely beloved for its alluring blossoms that have an almost alien or otherworldly appearance with flower heads that can be 6 to 12 inches across and bowl-shaped brightly colored bracts surrounding a central pom-pom of flower blossoms. King proteas are commonly used in cutting gardens and in floral bouquets and arrangements.

Scientific Name:Protea cynaroides
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Pink, red, purple, green, white, orange, and yellow
Flowering Season:Year-round but primarily during warmer months

17. Chenille Plant

An exotic Chenille Plant blooms in a tropical setting with plumes of red flowers and deep green leaves

Native to Malesia, Acalypha hispida, commonly called the chenille plant, is a flowering shrub belonging to the Euphorbiaceae family. Common names for the chenille plant include the Phillippine Medusa and the red hot cattail. Both names reference the shrub’s racemes of flowers, which appear fuzzy and red (or sometimes purple). Smaller blossoms have a shape similar to that of chili pepper, while longer blossoms look similar to tails or red snakes. They make very popular indoor hanging plants.

Scientific Name:Acalypha hispida
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun to partial shade
Flowering Colors:Bright red to purple
Flowering Season:Year-round in tropical climates

18. Indian Shot

A close shot of orange and yellow Indian Shot flowers in bloom

Canna indica belongs to the Cannaceae plant family and is native to Mexico, the West Indies, Central America, and South America. These perennial flowering plants produce large, dark-green foliage and flowers in bright yellow or red and, sometimes, orange in specific cultivars. The plants are edible and used in various ways, such as making sweet starch or other desserts from the roots and wrapping foods in the leaves for cooking.

Scientific Name:Canna indica
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun to partial shade (with at least 4 hours of direct sun daily)
Flowering Colors:Red, yellow, or orange
Flowering Season:Late summer through fall

19. Christmas Cactus

A Christmas Cactus plant in bloom showcasing salmon colored flower heads atop long green stems

Native to the tropical and humid coastal mountains of Southeastern Brazil, the Schlumbergera truncata belongs to the Cactaceae plant family and is commonly called a Christmas cactus thanks to the timing of the plant’s flower blossoms in the northern hemisphere around Christmastime. The plants have attractive, fleshy segments instead of stems and leaves. Toothed edges mark each segment. The flowers and buds sprout from the ends of these segments and are ornate, frilly, and funnel-shaped.

Scientific Name:Schlumbergera truncata
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red, pink, purple, lavender, orange, apricot, yellow, cream, and white
Flowering Season:Late fall to mid-winter (mid-spring in natural habitat)

20. Persian Cyclamen

A collection of low growing pink Persian Cyclamen flowers in bloom

Native to Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey, the Cyclamen persicum (or Persian cyclamen) belongs to the primrose plant family (Primulaceae). They feature deep-green, sometimes silvery-green, heart-shaped foliage that sprouts into a rosette. The blossoms shoot up from the center of the foliage and are shaped like shooting stars. During dormant months, cyclamen plants appear dead, but their growth will return the next autumn. Cyclamen flowers symbolize devotion, empathy, and a sincere heart, making them a wonderful gift for anyone about whom you care deeply.

Scientific Name:Cyclamen persicum
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red, magenta, lavender, pink, and white
Flowering Season:Late winter to early spring

21. Damask Rose

Two soft pink Damask Rose flowers in bloom against green leaves and foliage

A member of the Rosaceae (rose) plant family, the Rosa x damascena is a cultivated plant that does not grow naturally in the wild. However, it is thought to be a hybrid of three different species of plants from the Rosa genus, placing the native habitat of its parent plants in central Asia. This particular rose grows as a shrub and has several common names, including damask rose, Arab rose, Turkish rose, Bulgarian rose, Taif rose, and lokelani rose. The large, multi-petaled flowers produce a strong and sweet fragrance used in perfumes worldwide.

Scientific Name:Rosa x damascena
USDA Growing Zones:4 to 8
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Deep pink to white
Flowering Season:Summer

22. Wild Lantana

An incredibly colorful Wild Lantana plant in bloom showcasing clusters of red, orange, and pink flower heads on a sunny day against a deep blue sky

Lantana camara belongs to the Verbenaceae plant family and is native to Central and South America. Although it produces pretty foliage and ornate flowers in variegated combinations of warm colors that attract hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees, it is considered an invasive species in many tropical regions worldwide. Common lantana is notoriously difficult to eradicate from these areas because its roots have a spreading habit, making it quite difficult to kill. That said, it is a lovely tropical plant to grow in container gardens in cooler climates where it cannot survive the winter.

Scientific Name:Lantana camara
USDA Growing Zones:7 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red, yellow, pink, and white
Flowering Season:Year-round in the tropics, spring and summer in cooler climates

23. Florist’s Daisy

A close shot of Florist's Daisies blooming in pink and yellow

The Chrysanthemum x morifolium belongs to the Asteraceae (daisy) plant family. It is a hybrid cultivar that is thought to have likely come from species of chrysanthemums that were native to China or East Asia since there were more than 500 varieties recorded there as early as 500 BC. This type of chrysanthemum comes in several varieties with flat, daisy-like blossoms and large pom-pom-shaped blossoms in various colors.

Scientific Name:Chrysanthemum x morifolium
USDA Growing Zones:5 to 9
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red, purple, pink, orange, gold, yellow, green, and white
Flowering Season:Autumn

24. Bromeliads

A collection of bromeliad plants showcasing tall, lance-shaped flower heads that are yellow, orange, and red in a rainforest setting

Native to the American tropics, the bromeliad plant family (Bromeliaceae) contains nearly 3,600 species of flowering plants, including the pineapple plant. Bromeliads from the Aechmea and Guzmania genera are commonly grown as ornamental plants for their attractive rosettes of lance-shaped foliage and prominent flowers that blossom in bright, tropical colors. Bromeliads can be enormously rewarding to grow, but they only bloom once in a lifetime before producing offshoots that can be potted and grown into new plants.

Scientific Name:Bromeliaceae
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red, orange, yellow, pink, and blue
Flowering Season:Bromeliad plants bloom just once at any time of the year.

25. Tropical Milkweed

A group of flowering Tropical Milkweed plants in shades of orange, yellow, and red

Native to the American tropics, Asclepias curassavica belongs to the Apocynaceae plant family. Other common names for this milkweed species include bloodflower, Mexican butterfly weed, and cotton bush. These plants are subshrubs that reach about 3 feet in height. They have narrow, ovate leaves and globe-shaped flower clusters with fiery red corollas and yellow or orange corona lobes. The flowers are a strong attractant for monarch butterflies. Still, it is thought that the presence of tropical milkweed outside its native range could potentially be harmful to the migration patterns of monarchs.

Scientific Name:Asclepias curassavica
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red, yellow, and orange
Flowering Season:Late spring to early fall

26. Māmane

Bright yellow flowers in bloom from the Māmane plant in Hawaii

Native to Hawaii, where it goes by the common name, māmane, the Sophora chrysophylla is a flowering plant that belongs to the pea or bean plant family (Fabaceae). This plant is considered polymorphic, meaning it can grow as a tree or a smaller shrub. In tree form, it can reach up to almost 50 feet. When in bloom, it produces copious amounts of showy, pendulous golden-yellow flowers that make the tree or shrub look like it could be on fire.

Scientific Name:Sophora chrysophylla
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Yellow
Flowering Season:Winter and spring

27. Blanket Flowers

A field of tropical Blanket Flowers bloom with deep red centers tinged with orange and yellow at the tips of each petal

Gaillardia (aka blanket flowers) is a genus of flowers that are native to both North and South America, belonging to the Asteraceae (daisy) plant family. The genus consists of several species, cultivars, and hybrids that are bred to produce flowers that are even more showy and ornate than their wildly growing varieties. The flowers feature fuzzy brown centers surrounded by tri-tipped ray florets in sunset colors that fade from red to orange to yellow at the tips.

Scientific Name:Gaillardia
USDA Growing Zones:3 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red and/or yellow
Flowering Season:Summer through fall

28. Barberton Daisy

A collection of colorful Barberton Daisies growing in a garden

The Gerbera jamesonii is native to southeastern Africa and belongs to the daisy or composite plant family (Asteraceae). It is commonly called the Barberton daisy or Transvaal daisy, producing showy, daisy-shaped flowers in single or double styles. The blossoms are typically orange-red, but hybrids and cultivars of the species have brought about a wide range of shades that range from deep red to pastel pinks, yellows, and whites.

Scientific Name:Gerbera jamesonii
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun to partial shade or moderate sunlight
Flowering Colors:Shades of Red, pink, orange, yellow, and white
Flowering Season:Summer and fall

29. African Violet

Deep purple African Violet flowers in bloom

Streptocarpus sect. Saintpaulia is a section of the Steptocarpus subgenus containing about ten flowering plants belonging to the Gesneriaceae plant family. These plants are commonly called African violets and native to southeastern Kenya and Tanzania. African violets produce rosettes of fuzzy, dark-green, heart-shaped leaves. Slender stalks of flower blossoms sprout from the centers of the plants and produce five-petaled, velvety flowers in various beautiful colors and color combinations with bright yellow stamens at their centers.

Scientific Name:Streptocarpus sect. Saintpaulia
USDA Growing Zones:i.e. 9 to 12, 9 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:i.e. full sun exposure / bright, indirect sunlight / partial shade
Flowering Colors:i.e. Pink, red, blue, and yellow
Flowering Season:i.e May to September

30. Showy Medinilla or Rose Grape

Showy Medinilla or Rose Grape plants showcasing pendulous clusters of pink flower heads and large green tropical leaves

The Medinilla magnifica is native to the Phillippines and belongs to the Melastomataceae plant family. Commonly called the showy Medinilla or rose grape, the plant produces large (8 to 12 inches) leaves that are ovate with a glossy, leathery texture and showy flowers that consist of bell-shaped bracts and small pendulous flowers that resemble bunches of grapes.

Scientific Name:Medinilla magnifica
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red, pink, violet, or coral
Flowering Season:Mid-spring to late summer

31. Morning Glory or Purple Moonflower

A group of bright blue Morning Glory flowers in bloom against green leaves and foliage

The Ipomoea muricata belongs to the Convolvulaceae (morning glory) plant family. It is a flowering vine that most commonly produces delicate, trumpet-shaped flowers in shades of purple or lavender. This species of morning glory is thought to possibly grow natively in Bolivia, but they are common throughout the tropical regions, making the plant’s specific origin unclear. Moonflowers attract pollinators, including butterflies, moths, and hummingbirds.

Scientific Name:Ipomoea muricata
USDA Growing Zones:3 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Purple, lavender, pink, blue, magenta, and white
Flowering Season:Early summer to fall

32. Hinahina or Silver Geranium

Hinahina or Silver Geranium shrubs growing low to the ground

The Geranium cuneatum is a flowering shrub that belongs to the Geraniaceae plant family and is native to the higher elevations of Hawaii. The plant grows naturally in drier areas and is surprisingly drought-tolerant for being native to such a wet, humid climate. It produces silvery-green foliage and pretty clusters of delicate flowers that blossom in a snowy shade of white that is sometimes touched with stripes of purple flowers that are most prominent toward the base of the petals.

Scientific Name:Geranium cuneatum
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 13
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:White or white with purple stripes
Flowering Season:Year-round in natural habitat, spring or summer in cooler climates

33. Kahili Ginger or Ginger Lily

An exotic Kahili Ginger plants showcasing a large central orange flower cluster and long dramatic green leaves

Native to the Himalayas of Bhutan, India, and Nepal, the Hedychium gardnerianum is a flowering plant species belonging to the Zingiberaceae (ginger) plant family. Despite belonging to the ginger plant family, this species is primarily grown as an ornamental plant in gardens thanks to its impressive size (up to 8 feet tall) and its showy, attractive bright-green foliage and spikes of yellow flowers that feature fiery-red stamens.

Scientific Name:Hedychium gardnerianum
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Yellow flowers with red stamens
Flowering Season:Summer through early fall

34. Powder Puff

A close shot of a bright pink Powder Puff flower in bloom against green leaves

Native to the tropical and sub-tropical regions of the Americas, the Calliandra haematocephala is one of about 140 species of the Calliandra genus that belongs to the Fabaceae (pea and bean) plant family. This species grows into shrubs that spread with a rambling habit or small trees. The plant’s common name, powder puff, comes from the appearance of its fluffy, globe-shaped flowers, each of which features a puff of airy stamens in a deep crimson hue.

Scientific Name:Calliandra haematocephala
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red
Flowering Season:Spring to fall

35. Molokai Ohaha

White, start-shaped flowers emerge from the Molokai Ohaha plant with large rubbery green leaves
Credit: “Brighamia rockii” (CC BY 2.0) by D.Eickhoff

Native to Hawaii’s island, Molokai, the Brighamia rockii is a species of flowering plant, commonly called the Molokai ohaha, that belongs to the Campanulaceae (bellflower) plant family. It features rosettes of bright green, egg-shaped leaves. From between the leaves, large, white, trumpet-shaped blossoms protrude. With only five known occurrences of the plant growing naturally in the wild and an estimated 200 total growing worldwide, the Molokai ohaha is officially on the endangered list.

Scientific Name:Brighamia rockii
USDA Growing Zones:12 to 13
Sunlight Requirements:Part sun to light shade
Flowering Colors:White or cream
Flowering Season:Late summer to early fall

36. Kadupul Flower or Queen of the Night Cactus

A single bright white Kadupul Flower in bloom

The Epiphyllum oxypetalum is native to Sri Lanka and is a type of cactus that belongs to the Cactaceae plant family. This alluring plant only blooms at night, one night per year, making its flower blossoms a rare and treasured sight. When the kadupul flower does bloom, its milky white flowers can open up to 9 inches in diameter before they wilt right in front of your eyes.

Scientific Name:Epiphyllum oxypetalum
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:White
Flowering Season:Spring and summer

37. Sampaguita or Arabian Jasmine

A single creamy-white Sampaguita or Arabian Jasmine flowers blooms against large forest green leaves

Jasminum sambac, commonly called Arabian jasmine or sampaguita, is a species of flowering shrub or vine that belongs to the Oleaceae (olive) plant family. It has a twining or scrambling growth habit and produces lush, vibrant green foliage in addition to delicate, pure-white flowers that fade to a gentle shade of pink as they mature. The flowers are powerfully, yet pleasantly, fragrant and have been traditionally used to make jasmine tea.

Scientific Name:Jasminum sambac
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:White fading to pink
Flowering Season:Year-round in native climate, summer to fall in cooler climates

38. Peace Lily

A single bright white flower emerges from a Peace Lily plant

Native to the tropical regions of East Asia and the Americas, Spathiphyllum is a genus of 47 species of herbaceous flowering plants (commonly called peace lilies) that belong to the Araceae plant family. Peace lilies produce full clumps of foliage from which shoots carrying spoon-shaped spathes and rod-shaped spadices rise. As the common name for plants of this genus implies, peace lilies are a symbol of peace in addition to prosperity, purity, innocence, and sympathy.

Scientific Name:Spathiphyllum
USDA Growing Zones:11 to 12
Sunlight Requirements:Bright to low indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:White, yellowish, or green
Flowering Season:Spring and fall

39. Common Jasmine

Common Jasmine plants in bloom showcasing start-shaped, bright-white flowers against deep green leaves

Jasminum officinale is a species of flowering herb or vine, commonly called common jasmine or jasmine, that belongs to the Oleaceae (olive) plant family. The plant has a very wide native range with natural habitats spread throughout western China, the Himalayas, India, Nepal, Tajikistan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, northern Iran, and the Caucasus. Jasmine flowers are prized for their fragrant essential oils released at night and used in perfumes, skincare formulas, and aromatherapy.

Scientific Name:Jasminum officinale
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:White
Flowering Season:Summer and fall

40. Angel’s Trumpet

A group of orange Angel's Trumpet flowers hanging from the plant like a cluster of bells

Native to the tropical regions of South America, Brugmansia is a genus containing seven species of woody, flowering shrubs or trees that belong to the Solanaceae (nightshade) plant family. They have fluttery foliage and large, trumpet-shaped flowers that hang like clusters of bells. The plants of this genus contain tropane alkaloids and are some of the most toxic garden plants grown for ornamental purposes. If you introduce them to your garden, be extremely careful to keep animals and young children away from them.

Scientific Name:Brugmansia
USDA Growing Zones:8 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Purple, magenta, pink, red, orange, yellow, peach, cream, white, and almost black
Flowering Season:Spring through fall

41. Yellow Ilima or Golden Mallow

Yellow Ilima or Golden Mallow plant with a single golden flower head in bloom

Native to Hawaii and other Pacific islands, Sida fallax is a species of herbaceous flowering, shrub-like plant, commonly called golden mallow or yellow ilima, that belongs to the Malvaceae (hibiscus) plant family. The plant produces dusty-green foliage and small golden or yellow-colored flowers that are usually no larger than an inch in diameter. In ancient Hawaii, these flowers were used to weave traditional lei, and just one lei required about 1,000 blossoms.

Scientific Name:Sida fallax
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Yellow
Flowering Season:Year-round

42. Nānū or Forest Gardenia

Nānū or Forest Gardenia plant plant blooming with a snow-white, propeller-like flower head

Commonly known as nānū in its native Hawaii, the Gardenia brighamii belongs to the Rubiaceae (coffee) plant family. The plant is a small tree that produces glossy, deep-green, ovate leaves and small, snow-white flowers. Each flower features six lobes or petals that connect at the base to form a tube-like shape. The flowers are highly fragrant.

Scientific Name:Gardenia brighamii
USDA Growing Zones:10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:White
Flowering Season:Spring, summer, and winter

43. Blue Passionflower

An exotic and tropical Blue Passionflower blooms with soft white petals, bright blue stigmas, and yellow stamens

Native to South America, the Passiflora caerulea is a flowering deciduous or semi-evergreen vine that belongs to the Passifloraceae plant family. Its common names include blue passionflower, common passionflower, and bluecrown passionflower. Its flowers have an unusual and alluring appearance, with symbolic white sepals surrounding a fringe of a blue-white corona of filaments that further encircles a few purple stigmas and greenish-yellow stamens that protrude prominently from the complex flower’s center.

Scientific Name:Passiflora caerulea
USDA Growing Zones:7 to 9
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Blue
Flowering Season:Summer

44. Orchid Trees

Orchid Trees in bloom in a tropical setting showcasing vibrant purple flowers and green leaves

Bauhinia is a genus of flowering trees that belong to the Fabaceae (pea or bean) plant family. While many individual species have their common names, many are referred to as orchid trees or mountain ebony. Plants of the genus have a broad native range and grow commonly in tropical regions worldwide. The five-petaled flowers are fragrant and resemble orchids or hibiscus flowers with their exotic colors and prominent stamens.

Scientific Name:Bauhinia
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Pink, purple, red, orange, yellow, or white
Flowering Season:Late winter to mid-spring or fall (depending on the species)

45. Allamanda

Bright yellow Allamanda flowers in bloom

Native to the tropical regions of Mexico, Central America, and South America, Allamanda is a genus of 15 species of flowering vines, evergreen trees, and shrubs that belong to the Apocynaceae (dogbane) plant family. They produce large, trumpet-shaped flowers. The flowers of most species are yellow or golden colored, and these species are commonly called golden trumpet. Other species and cultivars, however, produce flowers in various hues.

Scientific Name:Allamanda
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Yellow, apricot, white, cream, purple, pink, and red
Flowering Season:Year-round

46. Tobacco Flower

A cluster of pink Tobacco Flowers in bloom

Native to South America, Nicotiana alata belongs to the Solanaceae (nightshade) plant family, and it is toxic to pets. Commonly called the tobacco flower, sweet tobacco, or jasmine tobacco, the Nicotiana alata is primarily cultivated as an ornamental plant for its pretty clusters of trumpet-shaped flowers. These plants mainly bloom in the late afternoon into the evening, and their blossoms emit a lovely, sweet fragrance into the night air.

Scientific Name:Nicotiana alata
USDA Growing Zones:10 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun to partial shade
Flowering Colors:White, red, maroon, pink, yellow, and yellow-green
Flowering Season:Summer through fall

47. Mussaenda

Mussaenda plants blooming with clumps of soft pink and mauve flower heads against deep green leaves

Native to the tropical regions of Asia and Africa, Mussaenda is a genus of flowering shrubs or small trees that belong to the Rubiaceae (madder or coffee) plant family. They have vibrant green foliage and produce copious clumps of flowers in various colors ranging from a bright crimson red to soft pinks and mauves. Several species and cultivars of Mussaenda are commonly grown as garden ornamental plants.

Scientific Name:Mussaenda
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight to partial shade
Flowering Colors:Red, white, pink, mauve, and apricot
Flowering Season:Late spring through fall

48. Begonias

A group of Begonias in bloom showcasing flowers in red, pink, and yellow

Begonia is a genus containing about 2,000 species of flowering undershrubs and herbs that belong to the Begoniaceae plant family. These plants are commonly called Begonias. They feature attractive foliage that can be fuzzy or glossy and range from dark or vibrant green to deep burgundy. Their flowers are ornate and beautiful to behold. Begonias grow naturally in tropical and subtropical regions worldwide but are primarily native to South America, Central America, Asia, and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Scientific Name:Begonia
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 11
Sunlight Requirements:Bright, indirect sunlight
Flowering Colors:Red, pink, orange, yellow, and white
Flowering Season:Summer

49. Freesia

Bright white tropical Freesia flowers in bloom with yellow centers

Native to South Africa, Freesia is a herbaceous flowering plant species belonging to the Iridaceae (iris) plant family. These perennials grow from bulbs and produce fragrant, funnel-shaped flowers atop leafy stalks. They are popularly used in perfumes for candles, soaps, and lotions thanks to their fragrant purple flowers. They bloom in almost every color and shade, making them a popular addition to floral designs and cutting gardens everywhere.

Scientific Name:Freesia
USDA Growing Zones:9 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red, pink, purple, mauve, lavender, orange, yellow, cream, and white
Flowering Season:Late winter to early spring

50. Crown Imperial

A collection of Crown Imperial plants featuring flame-shaped leaves in a vibrant shade of green and a prominent stem from which a whorl of bell-shaped flowers hangs

The Fritillaria imperialis is a perennial, flowering, herbaceous, bulbous plant that belongs to the Liliaceae (lily) plant family. Commonly called the Kaiser’s crown, imperial fritillary, or the crown imperial, the plant grows natively in various regions, including Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Pakistan, Afghanistan, northern India, and the foothills of the Himalayas. The 3-foot-tall plant features flame-shaped leaves in a vibrant shade of green and a prominent stem from which a whorl of bell-shaped flowers hangs. This cluster of flowers is topped with even more spikes of green foliage.

Scientific Name:Fritillaria imperialis
USDA Growing Zones:5 to 10
Sunlight Requirements:Full sun
Flowering Colors:Red, orange, reddish-orange, and yellow
Flowering Season:Spring

Types of Tropical Flowers FAQs: 

What are the main tropical flowers?

Some of the most popular and main types of tropical flowers include Amaryllis, Paperflowers, Mexican Aster, Anthurium, Bush Lily, Hibiscus, Bird of Paradise, Orchids, Scarlet Sage, Proteas, Persian Cyclamen, Wild Lantana, Bromeliads, and Tropical Milkweed.

What is the flower of the Caribbean?

Yellow bells are the Virgin Islands’ national flower and the Bahamas. These tropical blooms are native to several Caribbean nations, including the West Indies, Jamaica, and the Cayman Islands.

What is the most popular tropical flower?

The Amaryllis is a beautiful bulbous plant that produces stunning, vibrant flowers. Native to South African shores, these charming tropical flowers are incredibly popular, steeped in history, and have several fascinating stories to tell.

What flowers are native to Jamaica?

Many tropical flowers are native to Jamaica, including Turkey Tangle Fogfruit, Orchids, Hibiscus Elatus, Trumpet Tree, and Yellow Passionflowers.

What is the name of the national flower of Barbados?

The Official National Flower of Barbados is the Pride of Barbados (Dwarf Poinciana).

Warm Up Your Garden With Tropical Flowers Like These

Even if you don’t live in a tropical climate, you can still warm up your garden or home with flowering tropical plants. Be sure to keep indoor tropical flowers away from cold drafts and to overwinter outdoor tropicals in warm locations to continue enjoying them year after year.

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