Walt Disney World Resort

Pirates and Princesses Reign April 5-June 3, 2007, During 14th Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival at the Walt Disney World Resort

Walt Disney World Flower Festival Expands to 60 Days
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- A flower-festooned pirate ship will drop anchor and Disney princess topiaries will color the landscape at the 14th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival April 5-June 3 at Walt Disney World Resort. Previously a seven-week event, the popular festival expands to 60 days this year and offers more floral fantasy and gardening fun than ever before.

The first-ever pirate ship topiary will feature Peter Pan and his nemesis, Captain Hook, plus Tinker Bell -- all as intricately designed topiaries. Pirate Mickey Mouse and Princess Minnie Mouse, plus Cinderella and Prince Charming, Belle and her Beast from "Beauty and the Beast," and other popular characters make topiary appearances throughout the park. A towering Pirate Goofy, with Donald Duck and Pluto, offers Disney gardeners a chance to reach new topiary heights.

In all, there will be more than 70 topiaries -- plus 30 million blooms, artfully designed floral beds, expertly crafted bonsai trees and lush rose gardens -- gracing the 300 acres of Future World and World Showcase. For the first time in the festival's history, Disney's horticultural team will plant two crop rotations during the fest, producing "the biggest opening show ever" and allowing for a more brilliant floral display for the festival's duration, according to Disney horticultural manager Eric Darden.

Beyond the dazzling displays of bursting blooms, the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is known by gardening aficionados for its celebrity guest speakers, hands-on seminars and innovative planting demonstrations and exhibits such as the new Art of Outdoor Living garden next to the Morocco pavilion.

Each evening, Flower Power concerts will rock the park with live entertainment from top acts of the 1960s and '70s. This year's scheduled acts include The Guess Who, Davy Jones, Jose Feliciano, Petula Clark, The Box Tops and other crowd pleasers.

Minnie's Magnificent Butterfly Garden is back with hundreds of butterflies in a walk-through screened enclosure that will include a live exhibit showing how caterpillars form a chrysalis and emerge as butterflies. The family-oriented Growing Future Gardeners area, complete with colorful (and tasty) planting ideas for kids and parents, doubles in size this year following an overwhelming response during its 2006 debut.

A new themed weekend event May 4-6 will salute Cinco de Mayo. Back by popular demand are Art in the Garden weekend April 20-22, the child-friendly I Dig Bugs weekend April 27-29, and the time-honored Mother's Day celebration May 11-13, among others.

Other festival highlights include:

  • The new Garden Odyssey Festival Center, where guests can find program guides and festival merchandise, attend speaker presentations and demonstrations and ask gardening questions of the experts.
  • The popular Great American Gardeners series, kicking off April 5-8 with Paul James of HGTV's "Gardening by the Yard."
  • A "Lift and Sniff" Fragrance Garden at the France pavilion showcasing flowers and plants used to create several Guerlain perfumes.
  • Disney Gardening at Home presentations during which Disney horticulturists share tips and secrets for at-home gardening.
  • Kids' activities, including an upgraded, fun-filled Tinker Bell's Fairy Garden, the new Pluto's Play Zone with climber, Disney character meet-and-greets and daily ladybug releases.

The festival, including all gardening programs and exhibits, is included in regular Epcot admission.

Academy Travel is an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
Specializing in Walt Disney World, Disneyland Resort, Disney Cruise Line and Adventures by Disney Vacations
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