Redesigning a landscape with multiple plant types - help!

Raleigh, NC(Zone 8a)

I know I am not the only person in this dilemma -- a plant collection spanning roses, gardenias, lilies, elephant ears, banana plants, cannas, and a host of other hodge-podged foliage. Currently there is no rhyme or reason to where I have it planted. Rather, it's been a situation whereby I see something I have to have, bring it home, then try to figure put where it should go. By default, I just dig a hole and get it planted. now, I want to redo my backyard, add some beds, and give the yard some definition vs the hodge podge it is today.

Aside from varying height of plants (lower in front, taller in back) how else would you consider grouping your tropicals with evergreen/native plants? I basically have a rectangular back yard that is 70' wide by about 35' deep. I am open to (and would like to) create some raised beds since my yard is highly clay-filled. But I don't want them too tall; ideal height would not exceed 2' above ground level. If you have pictures of your beds and plant combos, I would love to see them to get ideas.

Thanks in advance for any ideas or suggestions!

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