An article I did a while back on using tropicals in the garden specifically for DC-area home owners was reprinted with permission and minor edits in the client newsletter for Landscape Projects, Inc. It should be archived here in a few weeks. Right now you'd only be able to get it if you are on their client list. If you email me directly I can send you a PDF version.
I don't use too many tropicals myself as I think they look a tad odd in my mostly English cottage-style ramble of a garden. I do have several canna in big pots on my sun porch and a few caladiums (pictured here) in my shade garden plus a black-stemmed colocasia in my pond. All of these will need digging and storing for the winter. Will that happen? Judging by my track record in past seasons -- not likely. I don't know if it is laziness or just plain stubbornness, but I just have some mental block of denial when it comes to admitting that our hot, hazy summers are over and that these tender tropicals will not survive a frigid February in DC. Somewhere inside I want to believe our harsh 6-weeks-or-so of winter is not coming. It just seems so improbable!
UPDATE: The link to the July/September 2007 (Tropical Plant Wave) client newsletter from Landscape Projects, Inc. is now online here.