Flower bed drainage problems

Last year we put in a concrete patio surrounding a pool and added two flower beds, that are enclosed with the concrete. We put a drainage pipe in the middle, but when we have excess amount of rain the soil does not dry properly. I originally planted hibiscus for the tropical look, but the are slow growing and some have died due to the wet soil. What do you recommend to plant, for a tropical feel, and how should I amend the soil. I would like some color. I live 30 miles north of houston, Texas.
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

The first two plants that come to mind for a tropical look and wet soil are Cannas and Papyrus. I know the Cannas would go bonkers during your hot summers. Other plants that tolerate wet soil include cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) and other Lobelias, marsh marigold (Caltha palustris), Iris (I. virginica and I. versicolor, among others), Joe Pye weed (Eupatorium fistulosum), and bee balm (Monarda didyma). I didn't check to see if any of these are listed as invasive for your state; that would be a good idea so you don't end up with aggressive take-over-the-garden plants.


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