India is marked by tropical jungles in the northeast, the Himalayas in the north and the Thar Desert in the northwest. The largely tropical and subtropical country fosters significant biodiversity in its native flora. As a result, garden plants native to India can find a home in corresponding climate zones in most other parts of the globe.
A member of the verbena family, pagoda flower (Clerodendrum paniculatum) is an evergreen flowering shrub that reaches 3 to 5 feet on average. Also native to Malaysia and Sri Lanka, pagoda flower is an ornamental used as a specimen shrub or as a naturalizing border plant. The plant boasts large tropical leaves accented by pinkish white blooms, that contain long, thin red stamens. Pagoda flower is a warm weather lover that does best in full sunlight in USDA zones 8 to 11. A rich soil that's watered frequently is ideal for this plant. Applying fertilizer in the summer helps keep pagoda flowering.
A member of the olive family, downy jasmine (Jasminum multiflorum) is an evergreen flowering vine or naturalizing shrub. Unlike many jasmine species, the flowers of the plant aren't very fragrant. The fast growing plant may grow to 10 feet in length, and it can be trained to grow up a trellis, over a fence or across the garden as a ground cover. An ornamental, downy jasmine produces glossy green leaves and crisp white flowers. Downy jasmine is best suited to full sunlight in USDA zones 9 to 11, but it will tolerate some shade. The plant is tolerant of a wide range of soil pH and drought conditions.
A native of India and Indonesia, ginger lily (Hedychium coronarium) is a flowering perennial that may grow to 7 feet. The plant is notable for its fleshy green leaves, which burst into bloom in the summer and autumn with silky white flowers. The deeply fragrant flowers, which can be cut for use in bouquets, resemble butterflies. Ginger lily can be grown as a border or backdrop plant in USDA zones 7B to 11. Ginger lily prefers full sun or partial shade in a rich soil that's kept consistently moist to the touch. Fertilizing during the summer promotes flower growth.