Welcome & Discovery Complex


Enter the expanded Botanical Garden through the Welcome and Discovery Complex, which includes the Halsell Welcome Building, The H-E-B Discovery Center, Gift Shop, and a number of seating and gathering areas. The new entrance provides easier accessibility for those with limited mobility. The H-E-B Discovery Center brings expanded opportunities for educational instruction for school programs, camps, professional development, and a variety of garden-related classes.

Halsell Welcome Building

The Halsell Welcome Building, along with the new Gift Shop, creates the dramatic new entrance to the San Antonio Botanical Garden, and contains the educational and volunteer offices. This is where inspiration for garden programs is fleshed out into plans, where volunteers learn important details for their day’s projects, and where staff bustle to prepare for the next field trip program. The new admissions kiosk speeds ticket and membership sales, while nearby the new Cypress Courtyard and Garden Gate Terrace provide resting and gathering spaces for you to meetup with family or enjoy a midday meals. Just inside, the new Mays Family Display Garden highlights the rich colors of South Texas.

Gift Shop, Admissions Kiosk, and Halsell Welcome Building

Breezeway at the Halsell Welcome Building 

Halsell Welcome Building (back view)


H-E-B Discovery Center

The H-E-B Discovery Center is the new home for the Garden’s formal educational programming.

Breezeway at the H-E-B Discovery Center

The center’s Exploration Station is an inviting first stop for your visit as you begin to plan your day at the Garden. It highlights the importance of plants, our region’s water story, environmental stewardship techniques you can do at home, and engaging nature play activities. It invites you in to gather for Garden tours, grab a Discovery Guide to add depth to your visit, and learn about conservation features at the Garden such as the solar panels on the Goldsbury Pavilion and the water harvesting tank under the Culinary Garden. The Exploration Station will showcase what’s in bloom with daily clippings at the Bloom Cart, and be a resource for you to learn about upcoming programs and events at the Garden.

Exploration Station

The H-E-B Discovery Center also includes 2 ‘dirty’ classrooms that allow students of all ages to get their hands dirty in a classroom setting. These classrooms seat 50 students and can be combined to create a larger classroom or meeting space. Hands-on classes will explore many subjects with an underlying theme of environmental education including ecology, biology, and chemistry.

H-E-B Discovery Center classroom

Two outdoor amphitheaters and the shaded East Porch add spaces for children to gather for lessons, dramatic reenactments, and imaginative play.


Mays Family Display Garden

The Mays Family Display Garden is a diverse and ever-changing showcase for texture, color and fragrance. Featuring an abundance of show-stopping native and adapted plants, the Mays Family Display Garden celebrates the rich possibilities of horticulture in South Central Texas.

Garden Gate Terrace and colorful Mays Family Display Garden

The Mays Family Display Garden focuses on long-blooming plants with hot and energetic color schemes that celebrate the heritage of San Antonio. It also celebrates and provides the tranquility richly deserved for the cherished Kumamoto En Japanese Garden. Seasonal plantings will illustrate compositions and act as a living curriculum whether you’re an amateur or professional gardener.


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