Photography and Drones

Photography Policy for MSU Horticulture Gardens                        

We welcome and encourage the popularity of the MSU Horticulture Gardens (“the Gardens”) as a destination for photographic events and memories.  The following guidelines are presented to ensure the safety of our guests, visitors, and staff, as well as the protection of our facilities, gardens, and plant collections.

Professional photography activities such as family portraits and senior, engagement, and wedding photos are permitted at the Gardens.  Professional photographers are required to become a Garden Member at the Contributor level ($120) and may be asked to provide their membership card while on the premises.  For information on memberships please visit our Memberships page.  The membership is renewable annually.

The use of drones (unmanned aerial systems) on the Gardens’ property for photography, videography, or any other purpose is prohibited per Michigan State University policy and Ordinance 9.01 and 9.02.

All public areas of the Gardens are available to photographers; however, all visitors must also be granted admission to all public spaces and should not be denied access due to photographic activity.  In addition, some areas of the Gardens are rented for weddings and other private parties.  We ask that photographers respect those events and photograph their clients elsewhere. 

Photographers and their clients are asked to please comply with the following:

  • Neither photographers nor subjects are permitted to enter into garden beds, seasonal decorations, or plant display areas.
  • Neither the photographer nor clients may pick or cut flowers from the gardens.
  • Plants, containers, chairs, benches, signs, labels, and decorations shall not be moved to accommodate photographic activity.
  • Use of glitter, confetti, paper streamers, balloons, etc., is prohibited in any part of the Gardens - both indoors and outdoors.
  • Photographers and their clients are expected to comply with any directives given by the Gardens’ staff or be subject to dismissal from the Gardens.

Please call 517-353-0443 or email if you have questions or need more information.