• Welcome to The Great Outdoors

    Welcome to The Great Outdoors

  • Monster adansonii

    Monster adansonii

  • The Great Outdoors Succulent Tent

    The Great Outdoors Succulent Tent

  • The Great Outdoors Cacti

    The Great Outdoors Cacti

  • The Great Outdoors Seeds

    The Great Outdoors Seeds

  • The Great Outdoors Pottery Deck

    The Great Outdoors Pottery Deck

  • The Great Outdoors Roses

    The Great Outdoors Roses

  • The Great Outdoors Waterfall

    The Great Outdoors Waterfall

  • Ceropegia woodii

    String of Hearts


Located on South Congress, just 2 miles south of downtown Austin. We are by definition an urban garden center. However, with 2 acres of majestic Oak trees, a serene waterfall, a gigantic wind chime, and a tropical greenhouse The Great Outdoors is a bucolic destination. We carry a wide selection of native and adapted plants suitable for Central Texas gardens and homes. Our inventory includes seasonal vegetables, perennials, cacti and succulent, indoor plants, palm trees, shrubs, water plants, vines, roses, fruit trees, and more.

We aren’t just about plants here at The Great Outdoors. We are a full-scale garden center. We carry a wide variety of soils specifically crafted for certain plants. We also carry fertilizers, insect management solutions, disease control options and specific plant foods.

You also get us! With our extensive plant knowledge and hands on landscaping experience that we can lend to your gardening project, big or small. We'll also send you on your way knowing exactly how to care for your new plant! We also have a team of loaders who will carry heavy items, bring your soil to your car, and help you get that impossible plant to fit in your vehicle for a safe ride home!

Learn more about our rooms & programs.


Monday - Saturday 9 am to 6 pm - Sunday 10 am to 6 pm.

Closed July 4th, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve and Jan 1-5 (to take inventory).

  • Calathea orbifolia

What's happening

See this months events and workshops!


Fairy Garden Workshop

  • 1st Saturday every month 11:00am. Our Fairy Garden expert will lead you in creating your own Fairy Garden. Adults and Children welcome.
  • Learn More
The Great Outdoors Garden Party

Garden Party

  • 2nd Saturday of every month fun for the whole family!
  • Learn More

Want to hear more from TGO??

Just scroll down to the Newsletter section🔻 We have archived all of our past editions. Check out our videos with the amazing Mark Gibbs! Each is full of helpful information and years of expertise.

  • GreatOutdoors waterfall

Our Services

While we know the importance of starting a garden with a well-designed plan, we also value the Do-it-Yourself mind set. With this in mind, we offer three design services (Garden Coach, Plan and Plant, and Off-Site Consultations), delivery, and special orders to help you achieve a great garden.

Learn More

  • The Great Outdoors in Summer

Our Nursery

Our inventory includes seasonal vegetables, perennials, cacti and succulent, indoor plants, palm trees, shrubs, water plants, vines, roses, fruit trees, and more. But, we aren’t just about plants here at The Great Outdoors. We are a full-scale garden center. Learn More

Recent Newsletters

In the Land of Tillandsias: Caring for Air Plants

Looking for plants that dont require dirt or soil? Check out the selection of tillandsias, also known as air plants, in our gift shop. Mark Gibbs is here to give us the scoop on Tillandsia varieties, care instructions, and ideal locations! These plants are gorgeous, unique, and easy to care for (with a little knowledge). Tillandsias are epiphytic, which means instead of growing in soil, they grow on and in trees and wood crevices. This allows for so many design options for this plant: you can mount them to a piece of wood, incorporate them in terrariums, or use them as decoration in centerpieces or arrangements. This is a craft person's dream plant, so get yours and get creative!

Xeriscaping in Austin

Save water, save time, save money! Mark Gibbs guides us through the basics of creating a water wise xeriscape. Water conservation is important to Austinites, and there is no better way to conserve water than installing drought tolerant native and adapted plants. Mark introduces the incredibly informative Grow Green guide which was created by the city of Austin to help spread the word about installing drought tolerant xeriscapes that use far less water than tradtional turf landscapes.With a little knowledge, and a plan creating a xeriscape is as easy as a warm summer breeze.

Organic Pest Control in Austin

The weather has warmed up and the rains are crossing Texas, and you know what that means: PESTS! Mark Gibbs has the organic solutions for your plant pest problems. Ditch the harsh chemicals, which are bad for you and the environment. The Great Outdoors carries lots of safe alternatives to harsh pesticides and we would be happy to help get rid of unwanted insects!

Butterfly Gardening in Austin: Herbs

Butterfly season is upon us! 🦋 Mark Gibbs is here to help you create a butterfly garden that will host and feed our graceful winged friends throughout their life-cycles, from egg to radiant butterfly.This week we cover perennials! Passionflower, salvias, lantana, gaura, mistflower, milkweed and more! Learn about guarding your butterflies from the wind by using tiers and which perennials work best for Austin butterflies. Stay tuned for our next video about butterfly gardening with Herbs!

Butterfly Gardening in Austin: Perennials

Butterfly season is upon us! Mark Gibbs is here to help you create a perennial garden that will host and feed our graceful winged friends throughout their life-cycles, from egg to radiant butterfly. Passionflower, salvias, lantana, gaura, mistflower, milkweed and more! Learn about guarding your butterflies from the wind by using tiers and which natives and perennial flowers work best for Austin butterflies. Stay tuned for our next video about Butterfly gardening with Herbs!

Is it Deer Proof? Deer Resistant Plants

One of the best parts of Austin is our hill country wildlife. That is true, until you start landscaping your home or garden! Deer can destroy a beautiful landscape in no time flat. Do not fret! You can plan ahead to create a Deer Proof landscape or garden. Mark Gibbs is here to tell ya there are certain plants that have qualities which our horned and hoofed friends do not like! Let Mark teach you how to outsmart deer with these deer resistant plants!

How to take Cuttings: Cut a Twig, Grow a Plant

Making Clones? Taking Cuttings? Its time to learn how! The ever stylish Mark Gibbs is here to teach you just how easy it is to clone your special plants! Finally learn the skills to cut a twig, and grow it into a tree! Trees, vines, indoor plants, outdoor plants, woody plants of all kinds can be grown from cuttings. Come in to the nursery to find out if your plant or tree can be cloned by taking a cutting and what you need to do it. Stay Tuned for our next video is about cloning your plants with a technique called Air Layering

Rose Pruning: Part Three

Its Valentines Day and Mark Gibbs is here to help you with fertilizing your freshly pruned roses! Fertilization is crucial to producing rose bushes that explode with blooms, and lush happy foilage. Follow these steps when fertilizing your roses and insure your Roses BOOM with blooms! This is the final segment in our three part Rose Pruning series, check out our first two Rose Pruning videos!

Rose Pruning: Part Two

Mark Gibbs is back again with Part Two in our Rose Pruning series! It's time to perfect your Rose pruning technique. How to cut, Where to cut, How many Canes to leave and How Long? Mark is here to help you take your roses to the next level! Stay Tuned for Part Three on fertilizing your Roses and getting the biggest boom from your blooms!

Rose Pruning: Part One

Its time to prune those Roses! Valentine's Day is around the corner and Mark Gibbs is here to walk us through the first steps of rose pruning prep and gives us some helpful tips on what to look for! In Part Two, we go through the process and in Part Three, we cover fertilization and how to get the biggest boom from you blooms! Stay Tuned for more!

Texas Patio Potato Farming

Its time to strike Yukon Gold! Farm a Potato "goldmine" in your backyard or patio! This week, the Dean of Green Mark Gibbs is back out on The Great Outdoors patio and he is planting Yukon Gold potatoes. Now is the perfect time to plant potatoes in Central Texas and you do not need a ton of space to grow them! Whether you are an urban micro-farmer or you are planting a large crop of potatoes, this is your guide to starting them right!

Planting Onions in Austin

The time to plant Onions is here again! Come into The Great Outdoors on South Congress to find our onion sets today. Austin gardening wizard Mark Gibbs shares some tips on planting onions in Austin. This glorious root crop doesn't have to bring tears to your eyes anymore! 110 days to harvest, big beautiful Texas onions!

Re-purposing your Christmas Tree & our Fall Vegepod

Once the day is done, and your Christmas tree comes down, rather than throwing it away here are some tips on re-using it! The charming, now bearded, Mark Gibbs shares tips from 25 years of taking down trees! We also have an update on our fall veggies grown in the amazing Vegepod. Instagram: @greatoutdoorsaustin Twitter: @GreatOutdoorsTX Facebook: The Great Outdoors

How To Pot a Bonsai

Our greenhouse manager Chaeli Cardenas has been potting bonsai for people to purchase as Christmas gifts, so we asked her to talk us through her process! She has so many tips and tricks for you!

Christmas Tree Magic!

This is a video we made of our Christmas Trees! Watch the timeline of them being unloaded, prepared, set-up on the floor and processed for guests. The ever-knowledgeable Mark Gibbs shares some facts about the fir tree, including some tips on how to get that 'Christmas tree smell' throughout the house (04:04)! Mark wasn't miked up for this segment... so you may need to bump up the volume a bit when he is speaking! Let us know what you think in the comments. Follow us on social media: Instagram - @greatoutdoorsaustin Twitter - @GreatOutdoorsTX Facebook - The Great Outdoors

The Christmas Cactus - everything you need to know

The Christmas Cactus is a unique plant, one that can be induced to flower during the festive season! The knowledgeable Mark Gibbs lays out everything you need to know, from lighting, to watering, to the tricks behind making the best blooms. It is so rare to have such amazing blooms in the winter season. A real Christmas treat!

Living Christmas Trees - Grow a Family Tradition

Cut trees are great, but living trees are better! In this video the insightful Mark Gibbs lays out all the info you need to keep your tree happy and healthy! After its first Christmas inside, you can plant these evergreens in your yard. You can decorate it outside in years to come! It will grow with your family and be a wonderful seasonal reminder of years past, and years to come!

Preparing for a Freeze! What to do, what not to do, and everything in between!

it’s getting cold in Central Texas tonight! So the affable Mark Gibbs shares over 25 years of experience, that’s 25 winters! He has loads of ideas, tips and tricks that you can use to prepare your plants for colder weather. For some this may mean a move inside, and battling the dryer air of central heating, for others it may be how best to keep their roots from freezing ☃️!! Come visit us for all your wintering needs, and we’ll help you and your plant babies get through this! Any questions, let us know.

Wildflower Seeding, Fall for Spring

The enigmatic Mark Gibbs shares everything you need to know about seeding wildflowers for the spring. Wildflowers are a special part of the landscape here in Texas. With this video you will learn about picking the best seed for your yard, preparing the soil, and a bunch of tips that will ensure your success! Questions and comments are welcome! Instagram: @greatoutdoorsaustin Twitter: @GreatOutdoorsTX Facebook: The Great Outdoors

How to Repot your Orchid

In this video the knowledgeable Mark Gibbs walks you through repotting an orchid! This video covers everything from soaking your potting medium to the right choice in pottery! Have a look and let us know what you think. Questions and comments welcome! Instagram: @greatoutdoorsaustin Twitter: @GreatOutdoorsTX Facebook: The Great Outdoors

Planting a Fall Veggie Garden - with Vegepods

It’s time to plant your fall vegetables and here is a comprehensive guide on preparing, planting and fertilizing! We are using @vegepod, a great product that is a fantastic alternative to a raised bed. Mark Gibbs guides you through planting starts and imparts decades worth of tips and tricks! Contact us for more info on the @Vegepod Instagram - greatoutdoorsaustin Facebook - TheGreatOutdoors

How To Properly Pot A Plant

The fantastic Mark Gibbs shares his many decades-worth of experience in potting plants with you! In this video we pot a small fig from start to finish. This video is good for beginners looking for a how-to, or seasoned gardeners looking for a tip or two. This video also relates to new pottings and repottings. If you have any questions, let us know!

Seeding Made Easy - Veggies For Fall

Have you ever wanted to seed your own fall veggie garden? This video talks you through exactly what is needed for an easy and successful start. From what seeds to plant, to tips and tricks on how and when to plant them. Mark Gibbs has it all! Instagram: @greatoutdoorsaustin Twitter: @GreatOutdoorsTX Facebook: The Great Outdoors

How To Prepare for a Garden Project

Mark Gibbs gives you some pointers on how to prepare for a larger garden project. With fall coming this is the time to get a lot of your trees etc in the ground so they can develop a decent root system before the winter. Use this video as your guide!

Desert Gardening: An Intro to Yucca, Cactus and Agave

It's still pretty hot here in Texas, despite it being August! It is hard to grow and sustain plants in the heat but some varieties of desert plants love this weather! In this video we introduce you to a variety of cacti, agave and yucca. We also talk about how to plant, maintain and get the most out of these heat loving beauties!

Do It Yourself - Mounting a Staghorn Fern

We talk you through mounting a Staghorn Fern to a piece of wood, creating a very beautiful plaque! Lay it flat or set it on the wall. We talk you through the whole process. It’s very easy - something fit for kids!

Getting Started with Bonsai

Thinking about getting started with a bonsai? Well with this introductory video we go over what you need, what you should look for and a few tips on soil etc. everything you see in this video is for sale, so come on down to The Great Outdoors when you are ready to begin!

Getting The Most Out of Your Air Plants: Bark Mounted Tillandsias

In this video we show you how to make an arresting centerpiece or wall hanging out of Tillandsias (air plants), bark and moss! All you need is a glue gun (we recommend cold glue sticks), your bark and an assortment of Tillandsias and moss. This is a great family activity, or over a glass of wine with friends! Enjoy the video!

Staying Cool in the Summer Heat

Mark Gibbs shares how to stay cool in the summer heat.

Republic of Austin Visits the Great Outdoors Nursery

In this transmission from the Republic of Austin, Jasmine and Chris visit the most magical garden center ever, the Great Outdoors Nursery. Founder Tom Tinguely takes us on a tour of this bucolic nursery, showing us some of the spots that make this South Austin attraction worth visiting. http://www.RepublicofAustin.com

Home Gardening Tips: Tomatoes, Eggplants, Basil, and Dewberries.

In this video Jill walks us through her home garden and gives us tips about harvesting tomatoes, eggplants, basil, and dewberries in Austin Texas. Filmed by mishnoon.com