Welcome to the Riverside Nature Center

Located at 150 Francisco Lemos Street in downtown Kerrville at the confluence of Guadalupe River and Town Creek. Riverside Nature Center or RNC for short, is opened to the public, free of charge.

The Visitor Center and Garden is open Monday – Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. except for major holidays.

Our garden is one of the most diverse collections of native plants to the Hill Country region. It is also a wildlife sanctuary – therefore, no pets are allowed within the fenced area. Thank you.

Mission Statement: Advancing the stewardship of our natural environment.

Vision Statement: To be the leader in education and discovery of our natural world.

Explore, discover and learn.

Visitor Center houses exhibits and displays, gift shop, resource library and meeting rooms (which can be rented).  Outdoor decks and patio provide views into the garden.  Restrooms are open only during business hours.

The Garden:  The crushed granite Nature Trail is approximately 700 feet long and winds through a 2-acre garden/arboretum that includes more than 100 species of native trees and shrubs plus 200+ species of wildflowers, grasses, ferns.  Plants lists and wildlife checklists are available here. 

RNC is a certified Wildscape Demonstration Site and Backyard Wildlife Habitat by both the National Wildlife Federation and Texas Parks and Wildlife. RNC’s site features the 3 essential components all wildlife need in their habitat: food (native plants), shelter (thickets, brush piles, rocks) and water.  The gardens are maintained by a group of dedicated volunteers.

Butterfly Garden is certified by the North American Butterfly Association and is also a Monarch Waystation.  More than 90 species of butterflies have been documented.

The Meadow is a mixture of wildflowers and native grasses that shift throughout the seasons.

Native Healing Garden includes plants with medicinal properties used by Native Americans. NOTE:  just because wildlife can eat a native plant doesn’t mean humans can.

Stone Circle is a quiet place to enjoy nature. It also is used as an outdoor classroom.

Riverscape is a model that shows how the creeks and rivers start in the Hill Country – as seeps and springs coming out of the Edwards Limestone.

Demo Gardens are maintained by the Kerrville Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas.

Soil Making Factory (compost demo area)

Hill Country Loop features the unique and rare trees and shrubs of the Hill Country and includes the Carroll Abbott Garden.  Carroll was a major proponent of Texas wildflowers and worked with Lady Bird Johnson to establish Texas Wildflower Day (4th Saturday of April).


  • Nature Lab is used as a classroom.
  • Pavilion houses annual events such as plant sales and is available for rent.
  • Lawson Store (circa 1900) is used as office space.

Rainwater Harvesting system: Rain is collected from all buildings into 5 tanks (total storage 17,500 gallons) and is used for irrigation and Riverscape.

PROMISE, a limestone sculpture was carved by local stone mason, Dean Mitchell

RNC is a trail head for the City of Kerrville’s River Trail.                                                                               

Parking is available at RNC & at Louise Hays Park.

See a complete map & learn more about the river trail.