Dino Days

https://zilkergarden.org/dino-days-2/(opens in a new tab)

February 17-March 16, 2024 | Hartman Prehistoric Garden

Dino Days will activate the Hartman Prehistoric Garden, transforming it into a vibrant showcase of botanical wonders from the Cretaceous Period. It will captivate visitors, offering an educational journey through the geological history of Austin and highlighting prehistoric plants as they spring to life. Through dynamic exhibits and interactive activities, Dino Days celebrates plant diversity and evolution while fostering community engagement through volunteer opportunities. Join us for the kickoff or celebrate the closing party with a dinosaur parade–better yet, get Cretaceous every Saturday!


Ongoing Self-Led Activities Throughout Dino Days

Visit any day of the week to celebrate Dino Days! Self-led activities are available daily, and additional programming will occur each Saturday between February 17 and March 16.

  • Scavenger Hunt: Can you find the 10 objects in the Hartman Prehistoric Garden? Some plants in this garden existed during the Cretaceous Period 100 Million Years Ago! (Available in the Prehistoric Garden on Saturdays, can be found in the gift shop all other days)
  • Story Walk: Walk & read a life-sized version of “We Love Dinosaurs” by Lucy Volpin in the Children’s Garden.
  • Prehistoric Audio Tour: From 70 million years ago to today, learn about the Hartman Prehistoric Garden’s origins and diverse plant life.

Saturday Dino Days Activities

Making a Fossil

Have you ever wondered how fossils were created? In this hands-on activity, guests of all ages can select a prehistoric object and develop their own impression fossil. For Pokemon Fans, select a magnolia leaf to create your very own leaf stone! 


Spore Dispersal

Learn the life cycle of a fern! Ferns are a member of one of the oldest plant families on Earth and appeared during the Cretaceous Period. Guests of all ages can observe tiny fern spores through a microscope, learn about spore dispersal using bubbles, and see what happens when a spore germinates.


Let’s Get Tactile

Have you ever seen a dinosaur tooth up close and personal? Stop by the tactile station to touch ancient fossils that have stood the test of time.


Build Your Own Prehistoric Planter: March 16, 11:00 AM

Join us in the Hartman Prehistoric Garden Pavilion for the prehistoric planter workshop to create your own miniature prehistoric landscape! Each registrant will receive a planter and two prehistoric plants to create the landscape foundation. From there, decorations like rocks and sand can be added. Finally, a mini dinosaur will be added as it would be incomplete without one! Folks will take home everything they create and receive care instructions.


2023 Prehistoric Art Contest Best in Show