Whether we can come up with "on the line of" tropical depends on what shrubs native to Florida look tropical to you. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, home of Mr. Smarty Plants, is committed to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the areas in which those plants grow naturally. The reason for this is that a plant in its native soil, climate and amount of rainfall will consume fewer scarce resources such as water, chemicals and back muscles.
Having said that, we will go to our Native Plant Database and, using the Combination Search, select Florida under State, "shrub" under Habit and "shade" under Light Requirement. The designation of "shade" is going to make it more difficult to find anything with impressive blooms and there will be few evergreen, but let's see what's out there:
Shrubs for Shade from Jacksonville FL:
Amelanchier arborea (Common serviceberry) - deciduous
Ceanothus americanus (New jersey tea) - deciduous
Chiococca alba (West indian milkberry)- evergreen
Clethra alnifolia (Coastal sweet pepperbush) - deciduous
Cornus alternifolia (Alternateleaf dogwood)- deciduous
Hydrangea quercifolia (Oakleaf hydrangea) -deciduous
Ilex vomitoria (Yaupon) - evergreen
Physocarpus opulifolius (Atlantic ninebark)- deciduous
Rhus glabra (Smooth sumac) - deciduous
Sabal minor (Dwarf palmetto) - evergreen
Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (Coralberry)- deciduous
Viburnum acerifolium (Mapleleaf viburnum) - deciduous
Follow each plant link to our webpage on that plant to discover its expected height, bloom time and color, preferred soil, etc. You may have difficulty finding native plants in the large commercial nurseries in your area. In that case, go to our National Suppliers Directory and put your town and state or just your zip code in the "Enter Search Location" box. This will give you a list of native plant nurseries, seed suppliers and consultants in your general area. All have contact information so you can find out if the plant you want is in stock.