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ZBG Guidelines for Visitors & Photographers

Visitors are welcome to explore designated areas of the 22 acres of Zilker Botanical Garden, and are asked to comply with the following park guidelines. Your cooperation and understanding are appreciated.

Visitor Guidelines

  • No Food - No Picnicking Allowed in the garden.
  • Do not pick the flowers, or take plant cuttings.
  • Stay on the pathways and grass areas. (If you are not on a pathway or grass areas you may be in a flowerbed.)
  • No climbing on trees, rocks or other structures.
  • Keep out of the ponds and waterways (this includes pets).
  • All pets must be on a leash at all times.
  • If your pet poops you must scoop and dispose.
  • Do not bother the critters that live here.
  • Do not feed the fish or critters.
  • No boom boxes or loud music allowed.
  • No butterfly or fishnets allowed.
  • Park or walk your bicycle, scooter, skateboard, etc.
  • No alcoholic beverages allowed.
  • Pack out what you bring in.

Photographer Guidelines & Required Registration

  • Please stay out of the flowerbeds and do not remove any plant identification signs. You may use any paved or gravel surface and the turf areas.
    • Even though the flowerbeds look empty, perennial plant shoots are growing just below the surface of the soil. Stepping on these shoots will kill the plants.
    • Stepping between the plants compacts the soil, turning it into a cement-like substance that repels water and kills roots. This creates a bald spot for the rest of the growing season.
  • Do not block any of our garden trails. Always allow enough room for park visitors to go around.
  • Do not pose your subjects in trees, on rocks or other structures.
  • The Austin Area Garden Center building does not have any place for the changing of clothes for photo sessions.
  • Ladies should wear walking shoes and carry high heels between shots to prevent tripping or ruining good shoes.
  • Please observe the hours of operation and allow enough time for your photo session. We close promptly at the posted closing hours.

All commercial and professional photographers are required to register with the Zilker Botanical Garden Event Office in order to be allowed to take photographs at the Garden. Registration is free. In addition, there is a photograph session fee of $50 per session (includes one admission fee). This includes, but is not limited to, bridal, engagement, quinceañeras, posed, formal, and family or group photo opportunities. Snapshots and nature photography are generally not included; please contact the office if you have questions.

Registration and payment of the fee must be done Monday – Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. in the Zilker Botanical Garden Event Office (in the Garden Center at Zilker Botanical Garden ). 

Please schedule your photograph sessions in advance.  There are regularly scheduled events and meetings held at ZBG that may interfere with gaining access to that perfect location for your photo.  Call 512-477-8672 x 10 to schedule your session or if you have questions.

To film and video at Zilker Botanical Garden a City permit is required. For details about working with the Parks and Recreation Department for filming, please contact Jason Maurer at 512-974-2427 or jason.maurer@austintexas.gov.

If a planting is accidentally damaged or someone accidentally steps into a display: Please make a check for $25 payable to the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department. Give the check to the hostess at the front desk. You will receive a receipt in the mail.

If you have questions, please contact Julye Evans at Julyette.Evans@austintexas.gov or 512-477-8672, Ext. 10.

 
©Zilker Botanical Garden,
Austin Area Garden Council
512.477.8672
info@zilkergarden.org