For the past 19 years, Epcot/Disney World has hosted the International Flower & Garden Festival. From the first week of March through the end of May, the park is blanketed with 30 million blossoms….yes, I DID say 30 MILLION blossoms!!–dozens of Disney character topiaries, floating mini-gardens and maxi flower-towers!! Because this year’s event was sponsored by HGTV, the indoor Festival Center was buzzing with showcases and demonstrations given by celebrities from the network, as well as staff from the University of Florida/IFAS who were also responsible for staffing the Ask an Expert booth. As luck would have it, I was one of 4 people selected from my Master Gardener class to work a 2 hour shift in the booth on Saturday, April 21!!!
Most of the questions we fielded were much like those at Gardenfest–people curious about organic growing, tree diseases, types of local soils, and the all important, “Where’s the closest restroom)
But the REAL fun were the hours before and after my shift, when I got to explore! The first thing I did was take a 16 minute ride through time and space on the iconic Spaceship Earth:
Then it was off to explore the flowers and gardens:
The amaranth at Showcase Plaza were so unbelievably stunning, I had to get a closer look!
What amazed me next was this HUGE floral arrangement:
and an unusual brown butterfly in the semi-tented area behind it:
I’d never seen a common crow (aka euploea core) butterfly before and was fascinated by the white “dots!” I followed it across a path to a garden sponsored by the National Audubon Society:
And what a gorgeous garden it was! Here’s a “macro” view:
On the way back, I passed the first of two floating gardens; one under the monorail:
and another, at the entrance to the Festival Center, featuring taller planters
As we left, I took one final picture with 12ft topiaries to commemorate the day:
I’ve barely touched on all there is to see and do at this annual festival, but you can see more by watching the video below….(and remember, click on the pictures to see full size versions!)
Until next time……
- My Fantasty Land – Epcot 2012 Flower & Garden Show (kraylfunch.wordpress.com)
- Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival – Wordless Wednesday (betterinbulk.net)