Thursday, March 05, 2009

Sneak Peek at Epcot Flower & Garden Festival

At the beginning of February, the Groundhog predicted six more weeks of winter. Since then, the country has endured its fair share of snowfalls, icy roads, and chilly temperatures, with which even Orlando has had to contend. But March 20, the first day of spring, is finally right around the corner, and Walt Disney World plans to ring in the season with a floral celebration that will make even Mother Nature jealous. Taking place from March 18 to May 31, the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival will light up the city with colorful tableaus and topiaries, fun exhibits and activities, and groovy concerts all intended to celebrate spring.

Presented by Disneynature, the festival is now in its 16th year, and it looks like this one will be better than ever, starting with the topiary. Every year, one of the staples of the festival is the intricate topiary created by Disney’s imaginative gardeners, and we’ve heard they’ve outdone themselves this time around with an extraordinary display set against the backdrop of Spaceship Earth. The topiary will feature beloved Disney characters like Cinderella and Prince Charming, Show White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sleeping Beauty, and Belle and the Beast, all made out of a variety of plants, flowers, grasses, and mosses. The display will welcome guests as they head into Epcot, though 70 other topiaries will also be spread throughout the park.

Aside from fresh sights and flowery scenes, there’ll also be lots of spring-themed fun during the festival, from colorful butterfly gardens to gardening presentations. There are so many activities and events that we can’t cover them all, but a few highlights include the Green Garden, which teaches anyone how to make an environmentally friendly garden, the Flower Power concert series featuring popular bands from the 60s, and the Great American Gardeners series, which will include appearances by gardening celebrities and authors from around the country.

Kids will find plenty to keep them entertained with the Pirates Adventure Zone, “Kids Paint Out” celebrations, and the Pixie Hollow Fairy Garden, featuring colorful topiaries of Tinker Bell and her friends along with hands on activities for kids.

And be sure to check out all the festival fun around the World Showcase. At the France pavilion, a Fragrance Garden tells the “love story” of plants and perfume; at the United Kingdom’s English Tea Garden, complimentary guided tours explore the art and history of blending tea plants; and at the Japan pavilion, guests can learn about the art of bonsai.

During the festival, those who need to shake off the gloomy winter can lift their spirits with beautiful flora and fauna displays. And with plenty of educational exhibits and presentations, wannabe green thumbs will learn tips from the experts that they can take home and try out on their own gardens. The Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is all about spreading springtime fun, so gear up for the season by attending this fun and natural celebration. Admission to the festival is included with regular admission to Epcot, so all you need are Walt Disney World tickets from


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