Whether Des Moines is your final destination or just a stop along the way, there is something for guests of all ages to enjoy at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden. Immerse yourself in the world of plants as you walk through seven acres of vibrant, resilient plantings in this urban retreat.
Location and Hours
Located right off I-235 in Des Moines’ East Village, the Garden is ideal for making a quick stop to stretch your legs or to spend a relaxing afternoon surrounded by flowers.
Find us at 909 Robert D. Ray Drive in Des Moines, IA 50309, where we are open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
What to Expect
When walking up to the Garden’s entrance, you will be greeted by our bustling Wells Fargo Rose Garden. Take a few moments to enjoy the unique selection of plants in this dynamic space, then continue inside to check in at the front desk.
We offer a wide variety of admission options, including daily admission ($10 for adults, $9 for seniors and military, $7 for youth ages four-17 and free for children three and under), family and individual memberships, or free admission for up to four people with a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card and a valid ID through Museums for All.
In the front lobby, you can see our tropical conservatory beyond two glass sliding doors. Under our iconic geodesic dome lives thousands of surprising plants including Iowa’s very first corpse flower, banana plants, a chocolate tree and many more unusual finds.
Revel in the tropical temperatures and vibrant colors, then make your way to the Gardeners Show House for rows of wow-worthy houseplants, including the world’s largest-known coleus collection, unusual orchids and much more. This carefully curated and creatively designed greenhouse is perfect for a quiet moment of relaxation or to spark your own planting creativity.
After you have seen the greenery and tropical plants inside, take the west exit out of the conservatory to explore the outdoor gardens. First, you will cross over the water garden’s boardwalk. From there you can view a colorful assemblage of water lilies and lotuses with a stunning view of downtown Des Moines. Then, continue to the other end of the boardwalk to roam freely through the rest of the Garden.
Surround yourself with the plants of generations past in our native Lauridsen Savanna, or view the kaleidoscope of color in our perennial Koehn Garden. And don’t miss our collection of winter-hardy cacti in the Dorothy and Max Rutledge Conifer Garden—if you’re lucky, you might even catch them in bloom! Finally, walk up to the hillside garden to discover an assortment of spring ephemerals and hydrangeas. Be sure to pause at the top of the waterfall to take in the beautiful view overlooking the Garden and Des Moines River.
Plan Your Visit
We invite you to enjoy the Garden for its beauty but also encourage you to celebrate its greater ecological significance as a model for more sustainable and organic urban gardens.
Interested in exploring the Garden firsthand? To find out when you’d like to plan a visit, browse our photo gallery and view our event calendar. Until then, keep up with what’s blooming on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.