Brookside Gardens is a stunning 50-acre enclave in the heart of Montgomery County, Maryland. For decades, people have documented their unforgettable moments here in the Gardens, and we welcome you to continue this tradition.
Our mission is to support the horticultural environment and integrity of the grounds. Though the Gardens are free to the public, we do require a Photo Permit Contract and a fee for all group photo sessions, including wedding and engagement photos, quinceaneras, prom photos, family portraits, and filmography.
If you answered “YES” to any one of these questions, you must have a paid photo permit.
Your One-Hour Photography Session permit gets you non-exclusive access to all 50 acres of outdoor garden areas. The Conservatory is not available for portrait/formal photography.
You can purchase your photo permit up to 6 weeks prior to your photo session. We recommend at least two weeks. Less than seven days in advance incurs a higher fee. See the rate chart below. You can also check the Photo Permit calendar for availability.
Please don’t! We recommend booking your session in advance to guarantee that you get the date and time you want, and that your session does not conflict with other events. We cannot guarantee access to the Gardens for photo permits on a walk-in basis, due to other scheduled events.
We understand scheduling an outdoor photo session can be tricky. If you need to reschedule a photo session for any reason, simply email Event.Manager@MontgomeryParks.org before the start of your session and we will help you move your session to a different date. You may email any time before your session begins, even on the day of your session. Email confirmation is needed to reschedule. Check the Photo Permit calendar for availability.
You are welcome to bring as many costume pieces and hand-held props as you like for your photo shoot. Any free-standing materials, such as tables, chairs, clothing racks, or free-standing arches, are not allowed as they could block the pathways for other guests. If you are interested in a more elaborate photo shoot, please contact Event.Manager@MontgomeryParks.org to discuss special rates and media exchanges.
If your group is planning to arrive in a limousine, party bus, or other large transport vehicle, please indicate that on your request form. Parking for large vehicles is not available on the premises. Drop off and pick up from large vehicles is available at the Visitor Center only.
Group Photography and Filmography Permit Rates
|A paid permit is required for all group photography in the Gardens.
Payment is due in full at the issuance of Permit Contract.
(see details above)
|Group Size||Reserved more than
7 days in advance
|Reserved less than
7 days in advance
|26+ People||Minimum 4-hour Rental||N/A|
|One-Hour Prom/Homecoming Photography Session||Per person/Per hour||$5||N/A|
Are you taking photos of just the Gardens? Individual photographers are welcome to photograph the plants and gardens of Brookside. No permits are needed, though we ask that you follow the hobby photography guidelines:
*Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission Department of Parks, Montgomery County Policy on User Fees:
(Effective January 1, 2010, approved by M-NCPPC Planning Board, October 2009)
Basic facilities, services, and programs (such as trails, playgrounds, and picnic areas), which appeal to a broad spectrum of the community, are supported by general tax dollars and are provided at no additional charge to residents. User Fees are charged for those facilities, services, and programs which provide an individual benefit or an exclusive use. User Fees may also be charged to balance use with capacity and demand, and to allocate scarce resources.