BOH, I know you asked Squidles, but I'm familiar with zone 8 and many lazy gardener techniques. It sounds like you've got a bed with a lot of potential. There are a few questions I need to ask for better recommendations.
How much water do you get by rainfall each month and how much do you want to apply water?
How much time per week or do you want to spend gardening?
Are you looking for functional plants ie. herbs and vegetables?
Are you looking for ornamental? Just something to fill in the space and forget about it? Do you want a mix of ornamental and functional?