Go ahead, snap away!

We encourage guests to take personal photos at the gardens and the arboretum, especially at low-traffic times and areas.

Amateur and professional photography

Visitors taking pictures of plants are welcome anytime at Matthaei Botanical Gardens. The use of tripods, and other equipment beyond your hand-held camera, however, is not allowed in the Conservatory during high traffic times (Saturdays, Sundays, and during tours & events) and drones for photography or any other use are not allowed on University of Michigan property.


Amateur or professional photographers at Matthaei taking pictures of people using the outdoor gardens or indoor conservatory for photo shoots will be charged according to the schedule below. Just stop at the front desk to pay the fee and pick up your Photo Pass.

  • Senior Photos and individual portraits: $35 for each individual
  • Engagement and couples portraits: $50 for each couple
  • Family group portraits (with up to 16 people): $100 for each family group
  • Wedding Party group portraits: Must be scheduled in advance; $100 per 30 minutes. Call 734-647-7808

Commercial photography

There are also fees for amateur or professional photographers taking pictures of products for commercial or other uses. Arrangements must be made through our rental coordinator, [email protected].

Professional photography

There is no charge for amateur or professional photographers in Nichols Arboretum to take pictures of people in our natural areas. For larger-scale projects such as TV or magazine/internet commercials, or for film or video projects, please seek approval from the University of Michigan Film Office before proceeding.