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So much more than just flowers and gardens at Epcot Flower and Garden Festival

Some scenes from the 2014 Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival.
Some scenes from the 2014 Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival.
Barb Nefer

When you visit the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, you certainly expect to see lots of colorful flowers and elaborate gardens, just as the name promises. Of course, you'll also want to see the famous topiaries that have been a big part of the event since its start.

What you might not realize is just how much the festival has grown beyond its humble origins. Over the past two decades, it's grown from floral displays and plain topiaries to vast themed gardens, many of which have playgrounds for the kids or educational components, Flower Power concerts with classic performers, and topiaries with characters so realistic that you'll think they've just stepped off the movie screen.

This Walt Disney World festival has a lot more, too, like food booths, displays, themed souvenirs, and talks by gardening experts and HGTV celebrities. Click the slideshow accompanying this article for a quick overview of just a few of the many activities that await you this year. Be sure to allow a whole day to see the festival. Arrive when Epcot opens and enjoy the topiaries, gardens, and butterfly house in Future World, then grab some grub when World Showcase opens and continue your exploration around the world.

If you'd like a peek at one of the HGTV celebrity talks, go to this article. For an overview of what's inside the Festival Center, go here. To pop inside the butterfly house, jump here.

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