Disney’s Epcot Greenhouses has one of the coolest plants this Bee has ever seen!

This last year I was lucky enough to visit Disney’s Epcot Greenhouses at The Land Pavilion with a personal tour from Disney horticulturalist Les Frey!

Britt Conley visits with Les Frey and the Hydroponics Gardens of Epcot. © Steve Conley

Les is fantastic and a wealth of information!  Frey has 18 years of horticultural experience here at The Land Pavilion and from that, an amazing institutional knowledge of all its gardening projects. Frey currently supervises the intern program as well as manages the lab and greenhouses.

Britt Conley visits with Les Frey and the Hydroponics Gardens of Epcot. © Steve Conley

There is so much to see and do here!  Especially if you love Hydroponics!  But of all the amazing plants they have, one struck me as the coolest: The Mimosa pudica!

Mimosa pudica © Britt Conley

On first glance it probably looks like any other plant.  Well at least it did to me. Imagine my surprise when Les touched it!

Britt Conley visits with Les Frey and the Hydroponics Gardens of Epcot. © Britt Conley

The Mimosa pudica is a sensitive plant.   It immediately reacts to touch.  In this case it closes up and wilts beginning where the touch began.  It’s really remarkable.   Check out the video below!

Les explained this is one of the self defense mechanisms for the plant against insects and other predators.  The reaction of the movement, according to Wikipedia, “occurs when specific regions of cells lose turgor pressure, which is the force that is applied onto the cell wall by water within the cell vacuoles and other cell contents. When the plant is disturbed, specific regions on the stems are stimulated to release chemicals which force water out of the cell vacuoles and the water diffuses out of the cells, producing a loss of cell pressure and cell collapse”

Here is a great time-lapse video showing the blooms popping up and falling away each day.

I had never heard of such a plant.  Although I photograph flowers all the time, I am always learning.  One of the other lovely surprises I enjoy about the Mimosa are the lovely pink blooms!   The Mimosa is actually a common plant and can be grown at home.  For more information visit: http://www.bio.miami.edu/mimosa/mimosa.html I may just have to get one of my own.

Mimosa Pudica © Britt Conley

For more information on Disney’s Epcot Greenhouses at The Land visit; http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/parks/epcot/attractions/living-with-the-land/

For an The Photo Garden Bee’s multiple post In depth look visit: http://thephotogardenbee.com/?s=Disney+epcot

‘Til Tomorrow…

Britt : )

6 Replies to “Disney’s Epcot Greenhouses has one of the coolest plants this Bee has ever seen!”

  1. Martha

    Search TickleMe Plant to easily grow them in doors in the TickleMe Plant Greenhouse. This is more the a craze. It’s a new a easy way to get kids excited about nature.

  2. Samantha

    Thanks so much for the post. My grandmother had one of these when I was a kid and I have been tickling plants ever since trying to find one. Just ordered a TickleMe Plant kit on line. Hope to see the big one a Epcot one day.

  3. Bren

    I’m off to tweet this… love what you share Britt! The video shares are fun.
    YOU TAKE NOTES while on photo shoot? I know… silly question for someone who use to report for a living right?!

    YOU ARE ROCKIN’ the garden world with your shares. I need to get back to Orlando soon. I miss the greenhouse.

  4. Britt

    Thanks Samantha! In order to se it you’ll need to sign up for one of the behind the scenes tours of the greenhouses. They have a few and they are great!

  5. Britt

    Thanks Bren! You so rock! I take notes any time i’m doing an interview and sometimes when just out shooting. It’s how I remember the exchange or something neat about a particular plant. I hope to get back there soon as well!

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