Photography Reservations

Photography Info

The Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden is a beautiful and unique location for photography. We encourage our visitors to take casual photographs (still and video) with their phones or digital cameras for personal use. This Photography Reservation Policy is designed to ensure all guests—those taking photos and those who are not—have a positive experience during their visit.

Please review the photography reservation types, reservations, and policies below before calling to schedule a reservation. Photographers and/or guests must call ahead to make photography reservations and ensure policies and pricing are understood prior to arriving at the Botanical Garden.

Reservations can be scheduled during these hours:

Monday: Closed

Tuesday-Thursday: 10am-4pm

Friday: 10am-2pm

Saturday: 9am-2pm

Sunday: 9am-4pm

All reservations are for one hour, require advance payment, and are subject to availability. Reservations are recommended to be made at least one week in advance. Walk-in reservations are not guaranteed.

Portrait| Family, Maternity, Engagement, etc.

Cost: Free for Family Plus members, Grandparent Plus members, Garden Giving Club members, and Annual Photography Permit holders. All others, $175 (group size 12 and fewer), $225 (group size 13 to 20).

To Reserve: Fill out Photography Reservation Form below.

Special Events| Prom, Formals, etc.

Cost: FREE for Family Plus members, Grandparent Plus members, Garden Giving Club members, and Annual Photography Permit holders. All others, $175 (group size 12 and fewer), $225 (group size 13 to 20).

To Reserve: Fill out Photography Reservation Form below.

Wedding | Rental Clients

Cost: Included in the cost of rental.

To Reserve: Schedule with rental coordinator.


Cost: Pricing varies on scope.

To Reserve: Fill out Photography Reservation Form below.

Press and Media

Cost: Free

To Reserve: Contact the Director of Marketing by email: [email protected].

Educational Photography Group Visit

Cost: Pricing varies on scope.

To Reserve: Call 515.323.6290 ext.6

Reservation Form

Photography Reservation Form

Complete this form to request a photography reservation at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden. Once submitted, a member of our team will review your request and contact you within five business days. Completion of this form does not guarantee confirmation of a photography reservation. All reservations must be paid for in advance. You and your photographer are responsible for reviewing our photography policy in advance of your visit. Thank you for choosing the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden.

What type of photography reservation are you requesting?
MM slash DD slash YYYY
MM slash DD slash YYYY
Are you or your photographer an Annual Photography Pass holder?(Required)
Number of Photography Reservation Participants(Required)

Reservation Guidelines

In addition to the garden etiquette and guidelines, please review and adhere to photography guidelines below:

  • Tripods, lighting, and reflectors are not permitted. Monopods are permitted outdoors only if there is no interference with guest access.
  • Photographers are not allowed to block pathways or visitor access to any area of the Garden. Those violating this restriction will be asked to cease or leave the premises.
  • Photographers and subjects may not enter or disturb any of the flower beds, plant displays, water features or climb on any art sculptures or other structures.
  • Props are not permitted. Props include, but are not limited to, chairs, luggage, baskets, signs, balloons, and cakes.
  • Outfit changes are not allowed. Please come prepared for your session and do not use the Botanical Garden restrooms for changing.
  • Photographers are liable for any damage to Botanical Garden property.
  • The Botanical Garden and its employees are not responsible for any losses or damage that may occur.

Photography Policies


Portrait and Special Event

Portrait and special event photography, taken on digital cameras or phones, includes but is not limited to posed photography of individuals, families, quinceañeras, school dances, senior photos, engagement, and wedding photography, or any other formal photos of individuals or groups using the Garden as a backdrop. Portrait photography reservations are not available during Botanical Garden special events, venue rentals, or when large numbers of guests are anticipated, e.g., winter and spring breaks. Guests and/or photographers are charged a location fee* between $175 and $225 depending on group size.

Botanical Garden members at the Family Plus or Grandparent Plus membership level, and Garden Giving Club members receive one complimentary photography reservation per year.


Weddings (rental clients)

Wedding rental clients receive one photography reservation included in the price of their rental. These reservations are for two hours and times must be scheduled in advance. Please note that photography policies and guidelines still apply and must be adhered to throughout the photography reservation.


Commercial photography is defined as photography or video sold or used for commercial purposes (such as advertising, magazine photo shoots, stock photography, etc.) or obtained through a commercial vendor. Commercial photography may be permitted at the sole discretion of the Botanical Garden. Please contact Botanical Garden staff for more information and to discuss the scope and feasibility of your commercial photography reservation.

Press and Media

Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden is honored by media publicity highlighting our brand, mission, and passion for public horticulture. Media photography is defined as photography used to promote the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden in association with coverage in print publications, TV, radio, digital promotions, tourism advertisements, or other opportunities identified and approved in advance by designated Botanical Garden staff.

  • Media photo shoots should be scheduled at least one week in advance to arrange for a staff host and to avoid any scheduling conflicts with the use or maintenance of the facility.
  • The Botanical Garden regularly provides images for print and digital publications. Photo credit information will be provided by Botanical Garden staff and should be used to credit the photographer whenever possible.

Educational Photography Group

The Botanical Garden welcomes photography clubs, groups, and photography classes. Group rates are available for admission if the group books at least one week in advance.


Annual Photography Permit

The Annual Photography Permit is a benefit to professional photographers who want to grant their customers access to the Botanical Garden without the customer having to pay the location fee for their session. The Annual Photography Permit provides access for one named photographer to conduct portrait and special event photography at the Botanical Garden.

Price: $400 annually
Purchase or renew your Annual Photography Permit today!

  • Permit holders are allowed unlimited photography reservations if they are scheduled at least one week in advance.
  • Photographers must adhere to the Photography Guidelines and the Garden Etiquette as outlined above


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