The already lush landscape of Disney’s Epcot gets a floral boost during the International Flower & Garden Festival, March 4 through May 17, 2015. This year’s event feature a host of new gardens, character topiaries, menu items and musical performances. Special weekend festival events will offer surprises for families, art lovers and gardening buffs.
Epcot’s Character Topiaries
Flower and Garden Festival guests can wander among nearly 100 expertly crafted topiary characters that include Snow White, Bambi, Mickey Mouse and Peter Pan as well as sweeping floral beds and exhibits. My personal favorite is always Lady and the Tramp, which is located near the Italy pavilion.
Disney’s first Anna and Elsa topiaries will appear in a garden vignette from the film’s finale. Icy pops of “Frozen” color mix with white and silver blooms of delphinium and alyssum along with spring blooms of gerbera daisies, petunias and sweet William. This heart-melting display can be seen at the park’s World Showcase Plaza.
Other new Disney character topiaries include Chip and Dale taking a star turn in two front entrance “Goofy About Spring” vignettes. Topiary Goofy, Daisy and Pluto will also be in on the fun.
The festival’s 11 outdoor kitchens will offer a variety of fresh new menu items. The new Bonitas Botanico, located between France and Morocco pavilions, will showcase treats like cachapas with farmer’s cheese (a sweet yellow corn pancake) and seafoof ceviche with shrimp, scallops and grouper with mango and avocado.
Sip the new La Tizana, a non-alcoholic punch finished with fresh fruit that can become an adult beverage with just a splash of Santa Teresa RHUM orange liqueur.
As in years past, guests can taste garden and spring-inspired tapas-sized food and beverages, see how the ingredients are grown, and have their Garden Passports stamped as they stroll the streets of the World Showcase.
Ten new gardens will greet guests at Epcot’s 2015 International Flower & Garden Festival. Discover a new healing and health garden, a Southwest desert garden, a pepper garden, a dinosaur-plant garden and a Shakespeare garden. Each garden is uniquely designed with its own storytelling aspect.
A Healing & Health Garden, located near The Land pavilion in Future World, will display ancient medicinal plants such as garlic, aloe, chamomile, fennel, mint and many more. Plants used to develop modern prescriptions include papaya, periwinkle, turmeric, yew, thyme and valerian.
The new Shakespeare Garden at the United Kingdom pavilion will feature roses to represent “Romeo and Juliet,” rosemary from “Hamlet” and lavender from “The Winter’s Tale” as well as poppy, lily, honeysuckle and willow.
Leave it to Disney to create kid-friendly gardens. The kids can climb and go crazy in gardens that feature state-of-the-art climbing equipment and hands-on activities in Mike and Sully’s Monstrous Garden and The Living Desert Road Rally Garden with Mater and Lightning McQueen.
Disney gardeners will lead weekend hot-to Gardening Seminars and workshops at the Festival Center, where guests can also pick up signature festival merchandise.
Illuminated topiary and play gardens will glow brightly for an after-dark festival experience.
Guests can follow the story of the monarch butterfly’s journey across the continent and see butterflies emerge from their chrysalises at the Butterflies On the Go exhibit in Future World.
Special weekend events at Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival include:
- March 13-17: Spring into Spring Weekend – St. Patrick’s Day festivities
- March 27-29: Art in the Garden Weekend – outdoor art displays
- April 17-22: Earth Day Weekend – nature activities for kids and families, Disney’s Animal Kingdom specialists April 17-19, and a sand-sculpture creation to showcase Disneynature’s upcoming “Monkey Kingdom” film
- April 24-26: Florida Fresh Weekend – a bounty of edibles and other plants that thrive in Florida
Garden Rocks Concert Series
The popular Garden Rocks concert series takes place each weekend of the festival at the park’s America Gardens Theatre. The line-up includes fan favorites such as the Village People, Starship, and The Guess Who along with festival new-comers En Vogue, Jon Secada and Gin Blossoms. Please click here for a full list of Epcot Garden Rocks concert performers.
Garden Rocks concerts are included with park admission and take place at the America Gardens Theatre at 5:30, 6:45, and 8:00 p.m. every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday of the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival.
Concert line-ups could change, so be sure to check ahead of time to make sure your favorite artist will be performing.
For more information about the 22nd Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, please call 407/WDISNEY (934-7639). As it gets closer to festival time, more details will be available at Epcotinspring.com.