Wednesday, March 19, 2014 | 2:57 p.m.
It’s officially spring on Thursday, and the horticulturalists at the spectacular Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens have made it official, too, with flowers in full bloom. (I’ve even planted my tomatoes and squash already for upcoming outdoor picnics!)
It’s always a pleasant 68.4 degrees at the Bellagio gardens, and this year’s spring display captured this morning by contributing photographer Tom Donoghue brings a bounty of more than 8,200 colorful flowers and floral creations through May 11, free to visitors and open 24 hours daily and seven days a week.
Surrounded by tulips, daffodils and lilies, there’s a 45-foot-tall cherry blossom tree with a wooden stage nestled in its branches for nightly music performances. Visitors can stroll through the winding pathway of the oversized tree surrounded by magnificent koi. Forty oversized raindrops sprinkle spring showers throughout the garden overhead.
Guests will wonder at the 800 live butterflies from Costa Rica, the Philippines and Kenya fluttering inside the 36-foot-long greenhouse located in the east garden. Around the greenhouse is an assortment of yellow, pink and white flowers. The north garden features five aluminum watering cans streaming into a pond ringed by 14-foot-tall multicolored tulips and 22-foot-tall yellow daffodils.
Flowers in the south garden rise up to a 22-foot-tall neon green garden shovel and oversized hand-painted flowerpots. Two 8-foot-long caterpillars with happy hand-painted faces wiggle around a performance stage, the second in the conservatory, through rows of shrubs including gardenias, hibiscus and bougainvillea.
Two floral ladybugs embellished in red carnations rest throughout the garden, and 50 butterflies made from organic materials, including green crushed Manzanita leaves, orange carrot flakes, lentils, radishes and rice, flutter overhead.
To celebrate the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art’s new exhibit “Painting Women,” the conservatory has created a floral interpretation of Polly Thayer’s “My Childhood Trees” with 1,200 mixed flowers. The re-created painting is fitted within a 6-foot-tall carved frame.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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Inspired by the beautiful villages of Europe, the AAA Five Diamond Bellagio overlooks a Mediterranean-blue, 8 ½-acre lake, where fountains perform a magnificent aquatic ballet choreographed to music and lights.
Within Bellagio are award-winning dining experiences including two AAA Five Diamond restaurants, Julian Serrano's Picasso and Le Cirque from the renowned Maccioni family.
Bellagio is home to an impressive collection of luxury retailers including Louis Vuitton, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Tiffany & Co., Breguet, Prada, Fred Leighton, Chanel, Dior, Fendi, Bottega Veneta, Hermès and OMEGA.
A world-class art gallery, the exquisite Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, the stunning “O” by Cirque du Soleil, a luxurious spa and salon, dynamic nightlife at The Bank, Hyde Bellagio and Lily Bar & Lounge and an elegant casino all add to the extraordinary Bellagio experience.