These are pictures of the modest garden I assembled over a 3-year period between 2012 and 2015. It was planted with full knowledge that we wouldn't be in the house forever, and I wanted the entry way to feel tropical and overgrown (I called in my SoCal-style grotto). Thus many species are planted in very close proximity (e.g. the Chilean wine palm). The garden, to my knowledge, included many plants not found anywhere else within the city (such as the floss silk tree and dragon trees). Here are the palm species: queen palms, Mediterranean fan palm, pindo palm, Guadalupe fan palm, Chilean wine palm, bird-planted Washingtonia, king palms, pygmy date palm, two types of bamboo palms, and a lady palm.
In 2012 we bought this, our first home, in the Waterman area of Fairfield, CA. Elevation was just over 100', and we had a large hill one block behind our home and a street sloping down from us across the street. The 1-square-mile area (at various elevations within 20-100' of our elevation plus or minus) includes several giant bird of paradise, two houses with king palms, several houses with bougainvilleas, and other 9b plants. I decided to ignore what the local nurserymen told me and plant a mixture of 9a and 9b plants. The winter of 2013 was devastating (I'd say zone 9a). I lost few plants, and the king palms in the picture were uncovered and undamaged, but another set was damaged and took months to fully recover.
Our lot was very small (under 4,000 square feet), and a two-story house and full garage had to fit on that. The yard was long and narrow, with four sections. Section one included the tiny front yard, which was largely grass, but included the queen palms and pindo palm toward the top; section two is the one pictured here; section three was a side yard with only a single plam; section foure was the back yard, which was mostly cement patio, though I did manage to squeeze the bamboo palms, a small floss silk tree, a small lady palm, and a nice Tasmanian tree fern back there.