Nature Play and Explore


Our guided nature program provides your students with fun, sensory filled experiences learning about plants, wildlife and ecology while exploring the gardens. Each program consists of sensory activities, a story and guided nature walk. The topics available for these programs include wildflowers, prehistoric life, birds, pollinators and habitats.

This program can accommodate up to 2 classes.

About the Pre-K program

This nature play and explore program consists of one hour of a guided program along with nature play. For the program, Wildflower Center staff will lead one class through a program starting with sensory based activities and a story. The program concludes with a guided nature walk. Either after or before the program the class will enjoy time to explore the Luci and Ian Family Garden. In this child-orienteered space students can climb on logs in the Stumpery, explore Dino Creek and the waterfall, walk the Woodland Trail, play on the Play Lawn, journey through the Metamorphosis Maze, build structures in the Nature Build, and more.


Group size: 12-40 students
: Monday, Wednesday, or Friday mornings starting at 9:30 a.m.
Duration: 1-hour program with 1-hour free nature play
Cost: $5.00 per person*

*Title 1 schools receive a $1.00 discount per person

Before You Arrive
  • We love to call your students by name. Please provide students with nametags.
  • Please ask all chaperones to silence their cellphones.
Additional Information & Policies

Drop Off & Parking

The bus passenger drop-off area is in front of the admissions kiosk. Buses may unload and load passengers in this zone. Buses should proceed to the bus parking area near the parking lot exit or to La Crosse Avenue for parking.

Running early or later? Please let us know by calling 512-232-0100 (press 8 to speak with someone).


Please check-in at the Admissions Kiosk. All remaining fees are payable at the kiosk via cash, check or credit card. Only one payment is accepted per group. Any additional payments are charged full price admissions.

Garden Etiquette 

Please review the Garden Etiquette rules before you arrive and communicate those to your leaders and students.


Teachers and chaperones are required for all visits. The recommended chaperone to student ratio is:

  • One chaperone per five pre-K to elementary school students
  • One chaperone per 12 middle to high school students

Additional chaperones may join the group at the general admission fee. All school and youth group reservations must be paid in one payment to qualify for the group rate. Payments are final and non-refundable. Coupons and member benefits (free admission) do not apply to group visits.

Food & Picnics

There are two designated areas with one in the parking area and one in the gardens. Tables, inside and outside, for the Wildflower Café are for restaurant customers only. Picnic areas are first come, first served. All trash generated from school lunches and picnics must be packed up and removed by the group. The Wildflower Center would like to encourage all school groups to generate as little trash as possible during their visit.

Cancellation and No-Show Policy

Cancellations should be made no less than ten business days before the reserved date to avoid the $30.00 cancellation fee. Groups that do not show up for the reserved date will be assessed a $30.00 No-Show fee. Fee must be paid within 30 days of cancellation or no-show date.


If you must reschedule or make changes, please contact us as soon as possible and preferably no later than 10 business days before your scheduled visit. Trips canceled due to weather can be rescheduled depending upon available dates.

Rain Policy

Field trips may be canceled due to weather by either the Wildflower Center or school staff. Generally field trips are held as scheduled as long as the weather is free of thunder, lightning, and heavy rains.  f it should be raining on the day of your scheduled visit, here are our guidelines: As long as it is only drizzling and there is no thunder and lightning, come on out. Bring rain ponchos and have a great time. Schools should check the radar and use their own discretion whether they want to go ahead and visit.

Please call 512.232.0100 (press 8 to speak with someone) and let us know if you decide to not visit due to rain.

Weapons Policy

Please review the weapons policy here.



Contact education coordinator Julie Graham at [email protected] or 512.232.0249.

Kids with bug masks

Teacher Resources

Our “Exploring the Native Plant World” curriculum provides instructors with materials to use at the Wildflower Center, in the classroom and anywhere.

Download »

Roadrunner bus

Bus Scholarships

Scholarships for bus transportation to the Wildflower Center are available for the 2018-2019 school year. Priorities for the busing scholarships are given to Title I schools and schools that utilize the Roadrunner Outdoor Adventure Bus.

Apply for the Scholarship »