Take a Retro Journey to The Land Pavilion With This 1987 EPCOT Teacher’s Guide
With Disney Parks around the world closed for the foreseeable future, WDWNT is dipping into our archives of vintage parks materials for a look back into parks history! Today, we’re sailing into EPCOT’s past with a bountiful 1987 teachers’ guide to Listen to The Land––Located in EPCOT’s The Land Pavilion!
Note: This article will detail the brochure page by page, but WIGS Members will have access to download a full-resolution PDF of the entire guide book. Head on over to Patreon.com/wdwnt to join WIGS, the WDWNT Inner Globe Society, for as little as $2 a month and unlock access to great content like this, and much more!
EPCOT history buffs will know that Listen to The Land was the original name of Living with the Land, before the name changed to its current one in 1993.
The introduction offers a brief overview of the various features of The Land in the 1980’s, including Listen to The Land, Kitchen Kabaret, Symbiosis, The Land Grille Room and the Farmers Market (known today as The Garden Grill and Sunshine Seasons, respectively). A fact of note is at the time, the pavilion was “the world’s only major display of food and fiber crops from all climate zones under one roof.”
A majority of the guide is dedicated to facts and statistics about the crops found on Listen to The Land, including rice and peanuts.
Did you know that bananas grow off of pseudostems which constantly grow off of an underground main stem, and that the pseudostems only live long enough to produce one fruit bunch each? Or that the vanilla orchid, the main source of vanilla, is the only edible member of the orchid family?
Moving onto aquaculture, an interesting fact is that the species of fish that are found in the Aquacell were selected for their ability to yield the highest crop in the least amount of space. Other desirable factors include adaptability to poor water sources, the efficiency of the use of inexpensive feed, and the ability to reproduce in captivity. Hence why species like catfish, tilapia, bass, and shrimp are used.
And if you ever wanted to see how the recirculating water system works in the Aquacell, this is the guide for you!
Moving onto the Desert House, a fascinating species is the Leucaena tree, used for wood for cooking, as well as paper and furniture materials, which forms a symbiotic relationship with Rhizobium bacteria in its roots. The Rhizobium “fix” nitrogen in the air and deliver it to the plant, while the Leucaena tree provides the sugars the bacteria need, making it easier for this plant to survive in the arid desert.
The Production House is focused on getting the highest possible yield from the crops, with techniques including vining and using rockwool insulation slabs.
And if you’ve ever wanted to make the greenhouse’s hydroponic fertilizer solution at home, they’ve even provided the recipe. Now where did I leave my Chelated Fe 330 sequestrene…
Meanwhile, in the Creative House, new techniques are tested to create the agriculture of tomorrow.
This is probably my favorite part of the ride. Who doesn’t love no-soil tomatoes!
Did you know that the some of the soil used in the space farming experiments was based on the soil samples brought back from the moon? The Land, meet Mission: SPACE! (Or, since this is 1987, meet Horizons!)
While that may be the end of the ride for guests, the tour in this booklet has just begun. There’s a deeper look into the technology and techniques used to farm in these greenhouses. This page discusses tissue culture, used to propagate asexual crops.
For those who want some state of the art (for 1987) computer technology in their agriculture, this page discusses the computerized irrigation and monitoring systems that help protect and maximize the yield of crops.
If you’ve ever wanted to learn about Integrated Pest Management, this is the booklet for you!
There’s even pest management tips for home gardeners! (Because teachers may like to garden, too.) But I really dig that picture of the backstage greenhouses.
Of course, there are other things to enjoy at The Land, including fine, greenhouse-fresh dining!
Enjoy a lesson on good nutrition with some catchy tunes at the Kitchen Kabaret!
Or see the first EPCOT film to show how humans have changed the natural balance and what we’re doing to keep it in check, Symbiosis.
If you were a student of agriculture in 1987, you could’ve joined Kraft’s Agricultural Student Program and spent six months working and learning in The Land’s greenhouses!
What a healthy, nutritious lesson! I’m hungry to learn more already!