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24 Tropical-look plants that are purple and green

In this article, we will explore 24 stunning plants with purple and green foliage that are sure to add a tropical vibe to your outdoor oasis. We’ve even included some purple flowering tropical plants so that you can cut their gorgeous blooms and bring them indoors. Get ready to infuse your garden with vibrant colors and create a tropical paradise right in your backyard!

Purple and Green Foliage in Tropical Gardens: Before we jump into the plant selection, let’s take a moment to appreciate the beauty and significance of purple and green foliage in tropical gardens. The combination of these colors creates a vibrant and dynamic atmosphere. Purple foliage symbolizes royalty, mystique, and elegance, while green represents growth, freshness, and harmony. Together, they can evoke a sense of enchantment, a contemporary palette or a restful tranquility in your garden space.

Now, without further ado, let’s discover our top 24 tropical-style plants with captivating purple and green foliage:

Purple oxalis triangularis growing in a pot.

Purple Oxalis

Purple Oxalis (Oxalis triangularis): First on our list is the charming Purple Oxalis, with its distinctive triangular leaves and rich purple color accented by pink flowers. This low-growing perennial is characterized by its distinct three-leaf clover-like shape, which creates a visually interesting pattern. The leaves open during the day, revealing their captivating coloration, and then close up at night, adding an element of fascination to your plant display. Cultivate Purple Oxalis in well-draining soil and partial shade for optimal growth and vibrancy.

Eucomis comosum sparkling burgundy purple flowering piapple lily.

Pineapple Lily

Pineapple Lily (Eucomis spp): Introducing the enchanting Eucomis, also known as the Pineapple Lily, with its unique and captivating appearance. This  bulbous perennial showcases large, strappy leaves in shades of purple  and green, topped with a cluster of pineapple-like flowers. Pineapple  lilies have many varieties that are different shades of purple plants  and green plants. Eucomis loves bright light so thrives in sites that  have direct sunlight or partial shade and well-drained soil. ‘Sparkling Burgundy’ is the variety shown above.

Persian shield foliage as ground cover in shady location (Strobilanthes dyeranus).

Persian Shield

Persian Shield (Strobilanthes dyerianus): Persian Shield is a favorite of all the purple-leafed plants, most likely for its iridescent purple leaves with metallic undertones. This tropical plant loves warmth and humidity, making it an  ideal choice for tropical-style gardens. Be sure to provide  well-draining soil, ample sunlight, and occasional pruning to maintain  its lush foliage. If you’re not lucky enough to live in the tropics then  you’ll be happy to know that you can add Persian Shield to your  collection of purple houseplants.

Calathea white fusion plant in wicker basket

Calathea White Fusion

Calathea White Fusion (Calathea ‘White Fusion’): Discover the ethereal beauty of Calathea White Fusion, a stunning variety known for its captivating blend of white and green foliage with a purple underside. This tropical gem thrives in bright, indirect light and well-draining soil. Like other Calathea varieties, it prefers consistently moist soil and prefers an environment with high humidity. Calathea White Fusion adds a touch of elegance and sophistication as a statement plant indoors, with its unique and ever-changing leaf patterns.

Red Mambo alocasia plant in white pot on table

Red Mambo Alocasia

Red Mambo Alocasia (Alocasia azlanii): Have you seen the dazzling Alocasia azlanii, a rare and sought-after jewel variety known for its stunning purple and green leaves? This tropical beauty showcases large, arrowhead-shaped foliage with prominent veins and contrasting colors. Alocasia azlanii thrives in bright, indirect light and well-draining soil. Provide ample humidity and consistent moisture to keep its foliage looking its best. With its regal appearance, Alocasia Azlanii becomes a striking focal point in any tropical garden or as an indoor statement plant in your living space.

Close up of Peacock Plant (Calathea mayokana) foliage - dark green leave with lime green pattern and purple underside.

Peacock Plant

Peacock Plant (Calathea mayokana): This popular Calathea variety features stunning purple and deep green leaves with intricate patterns. The oval leaves have a deep purple underside with vibrant green colors in a peacock feather pattern on the leaf surface. Calathea mayokana thrives in medium to bright, indirect light and well-draining soil. Keep the soil consistently moist and provide ample humidity to maintain its vibrant foliage. Its striking appearance and ability to purify the air make Calathea mayokana a popular choice for tropical-style indoor gardens or shaded outdoor spaces.

Overhead shot of Rubber Tree in pot

Rubber Tree

Rubber Tree (Ficus elastica ‘Burgundy’): This stunning variety of Rubber Tree has deep purple, almost black, glossy leaves. The Ficus elastica ‘Burgundy’ thrives in bright, indirect light but can tolerate lower light conditions. Its robust and upright growth habit makes it an ideal choice for adding height and structure to your tropical garden or as a statement plant in a large container indoors. Ensure well-draining soil and regular watering, allowing the topsoil to dry slightly between waterings. With its rich and velvety foliage, Ficus elastica ‘Burgundy’ is an elegant feature plant that brings a sense of sophistication to your plant collection.

Close up on foliage of Cordyline australis

Cabbage Palm

Cabbage Palm (Cordyline australis): Introduce a touch of architectural beauty with Cordyline australis or as it is better known by its other common names of Cabbage Tree or Torbay Palm. This evergreen tree showcases long, sword-shaped leaves in shades of green and purple, creating a stunning vertical element in your tropical garden. Cordyline Australis thrives in full sun to partial shade and well-draining soil. It is a hardy plant that can withstand various soil types and coastal conditions. With its tall and slender form, Cordyline Australis is an excellent choice for adding structure and height to your landscape.

Overhead shot of purple and green neoregalia bromeliad

Neoregelia Bromeliads

Neoregelia (Bromeliaceae family): Embrace the tropical spirit with the vibrant Bromeliads, a diverse family of plants known for their stunning rosettes of colorful leaves. Many bromeliads, such as Neoregelia, feature foliage in shades of purple and green. These hardy plants thrive in bright, indirect light and well-draining soil. Bromeliads are often epiphytic, meaning they can grow on tree trunks or in containers with a well-draining medium. With their striking foliage and occasional vibrant blooms, bromeliads add a touch of exoticism to any tropical garden.

water droplets on purple Alternanthera foliage.

Purple Alternanthera

Alternanthera (Alternanthera brasiliana.): Add a touch of texture and color with Alternanthera plants. Their compact growth, purple stems and foliage in shades of purple and green make them an excellent choice for borders, edging, or as ground cover. Alternanthera thrives in full sun to partial shade and prefers consistently moist soil. Regular trimming will help maintain their compact form and promote new growth.

Close up of Tradescantia pallida (Purple Heart Vine) foliage

Purple Heart

Purple Heart (Tradescantia pallida syn Setcreasea pallida): Discover the captivating beauty of the Purple Heart Vine, cousin of the Wandering Jew or Inch Plant (Tradescantia zebrina), a trailing plant with cascading vines adorned with purple and green leaves. This plant is perfect for hanging baskets, where its vibrant foliage can cascade gracefully. Purple Heart thrives in bright, indirect light and well-draining soil.

Dark purple foliage and flower stalks with pink flowers on Heuchera Wildberry

Coral Bells ‘Wildberry’

These perennial plants enchant with their vibrant purple foliage. Heuchera thrives in partial to full shade and prefers moist, well-draining soil. Delicate bell-shaped flowers adorn tall stems above the foliage in late spring or early summer. Resilient and adaptable, these long-lasting plants retain their striking color throughout the season, making them ideal for shaded areas as focal points, borders, or mass plantings.

Magenta and green foliage on Ti Plant

Ti Plant

Ti Plant (Cordyline fruticosa): Introduce a touch of drama with the upright growth and variegated foliage of the Ti Plant. With its large leaves striped in tones of purple and green, it adds height and structure to your tropical garden. Foliage also comes in a range of other various colors including pink, orange, yellow and lime. Ti Plants thrive in warm climates and need bright, indirect light and well-draining soil. Ensure regular watering to keep the soil evenly moist, but avoid overwatering.

Purple fountain grass

Purple Fountain Grass

Purple Fountain Grass (Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’): Add movement and texture with the graceful Purple Fountain Grass. Its arching blades and purple inflorescences sway in the breeze, making it perfect for coastal gardens. This ornamental grass thrives in full sun and well-draining soil. Regular pruning in late winter or early spring will help maintain its neat appearance.

Mangave succulent leaves

Mangave ‘Mission to Mars’

Mangave ‘Mission to Mars’: Combining the best traits of Agave and Manfreda, Mangave is a succulent hybrid that offers remarkable foliage in shades of purple and green. These architectural beauties feature rosettes of thick, fleshy leaves with intricate patterns and colors. Mangave plants are drought-tolerant and prefer well-draining soil. With their unique textures and eye-catching colors, Mangaves add sculptural elegance to any tropical garden or xeriscape design.

Close up of Purple Velvet Plant

Purple Velvet Plant

Purple Velvet Plant (Gynura aurantiaca): You won’t be able to resist stroking the velvety leaves of the Purple Velvet Plant. With its soft, fuzzy leaves and purple undersides, this tropical beauty  adds a touch of luxury to any garden. It prefers bright, indirect light  and well-draining soil. Prune regularly to maintain its compact form and  encourage bushier growth. Consider using Purple Velvet Plant in containers or as an accent in mixed foliage displays for a pop of rich color.

Purple and green leaves of Coleus plant


Coleus (Plectranthus scutellarioides): Get ready to be dazzled by the kaleidoscope of colors that Coleus brings to your tropical garden. With their intricate patterns and vibrant shades of purple and green, Coleus plants are true show-stoppers. They thrive in partial shade or filtered sunlight and prefer consistently moist soil. Pinch off the flower buds to promote vigorous foliage growth and maintain their stunning appearance.

Colorful green, pink and deep purple croton foliage.


Croton (Codiaeum variegatum): If you are searching for tropical foliage plants then Croton is your solution. With their multicolored leaves featuring shades of purple, green, yellow, and orange, Croton plants are a true feast for the eyes. These plants thrive in tropical regions. They are happy in full sun to partial shade and require well-draining soil. Keep in mind that Crotons are sensitive to cold temperatures, so protect them from frost or extreme drops in temperature.

Moses in the Cradle foliage silvery green lieaves with magenta pink underside.


Moses-in-the-Cradle (Rhoeo spathacea): Discover the unique beauty of Moses-in-the-Cradle, featuring vibrant purple and green sword-shaped leaves with green stripes on top and purple stripes on the underside. This low-maintenance plant is perfect for borders or mass plantings, adding a splash of color to your tropical garden. It thrives in partial shade and well-draining soil. Provide regular watering, allowing the soil to slightly dry between waterings. Moses-in-the-Cradle is a resilient and eye-catching choice for adding texture and interest to your outdoor space.

Toad lily flower

Toad Lily

Toad Lily (Tricyrtis hirta): Discover the enchanting beauty of the Toad Lily, a unique perennial known for its exquisite flowers and variegated foliage. The leaves of the Toad Lily showcase shades of green and its orchid-like flowers bloom in late summer or early fall, featuring intricate patterns in cream and purple. Plant Tricyrtis in shaded borders or woodland gardens for a pop of color and an unexpected element of surprise. Tricyrtis prefers partial to full shade and moist, well-draining soil.

Purple aeonium plant

Purple Aeonium

Purple Aeonium (Aeonium arboreum): Embrace the striking beauty of the Purple Aeonium, a succulent plant with rosettes of deep purple or dark burgundy leaves. These dramatic foliage plants are perfect for adding texture and color to your tropical garden or container displays. Purple Aeonium thrives in full sun to partial shade and well-draining soil. It is drought-tolerant and requires minimal water once established. With its unique and eye-catching rosette form, the Purple Aeonium creates a focal point and adds a touch of architectural interest to any landscape.

Close up of dark green caladium leaves with magenta veins


Caladium (Caladium spp.): Introduce a splash of tropical flair with the vibrant Caladium, known for its colorful and patterned foliage. These tuberous perennials feature heart-shaped leaves in shades of green and various shades of purple, magenta and pink, creating a visually stunning display. Caladiums prefer partial shade and moist, well-draining soil. Plant them in containers, borders, or as bedding plants for a burst of color and texture. Keep in mind that Caladiums are typically grown as annuals or as a tropical houseplant in cooler climates. With their bold and showy foliage, Caladiums are sure to capture attention in your garden.

Purple flowers and variegated foliage of Liriope Muscari

Lily Turf

Lily Turf (Liriope muscari): Add a charming ground cover or border plant with the evergreen Liriope Muscari. Its grass-like foliage features slender, arching leaves in shades of green and purple. Liriope Muscari produces spikes of delicate, purple flowers that add a splash of color to your tropical garden. This versatile plant thrives in partial to full shade and well-draining soil. It is a low-maintenance option that requires minimal water once established. Use Liriope Muscari to create edging along pathways or to fill in bare spots with its attractive foliage and delightful blooms.

Flowers and foliage of purple shamrock plant (Oxalis regnelii)

Purple Shamrock

Purple Shamrock (Oxalis regnellii): Last but not least, indulge in the delicate and charming Purple Shamrock. With its clover-like dark purple leaves and white flowers it will bright up a shady part of your garden. Plant Purple Shamrock in well-draining soil and partial shade for optimal growth. It works beautifully in containers or as a ground cover, creating a carpet of purple foliage. Keep the soil consistently moist but avoid overwatering. The Purple Shamrock brings a sense of enchantment and playfulness to your shade garden.

There you have it, fellow tropical garden enthusiasts; 24 tropical-style plants with captivating purple and green foliage to transform your outdoor space into a tropical paradise. By incorporating these stunning plants you can create a vibrant and exotic atmosphere in your garden. Remember  to consider each plant’s specific growing requirements, such as  sunlight, soil conditions, and water needs, to ensure their successful  cultivation. So go ahead, unleash your creativity, and let these beautiful plants bring the magic of the tropics to your doorstep.

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Bettina Christensen wearing a straw hat and blue and green shirt

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