Fire Emblem: Three Houses Gardening guide: seeds, gardening combos and advice for using the greenhouse
There's a lot of different tasks you can undertake at the monastery in Fire Emblem: Three Houses, many of which are covered in our extensive guide. All are useful in different ways - and one you definitely shouldn't sleep on is gardening.
Gardening is unlocked very early on in Three Houses - keep an eye out for Dedue in Chapter 1, as he'll give you the side quest called Green Thumb Beginnings. This quest is basically a mini tutorial for using the greenhouse for the gardening mini-game - and once unlocked, it should become a staple of your time in Fire Emblem: Three Houses.
How Gardening Works in Fire Emblem: Three Houses: rewards, gardening combos and general advice
Once you've unlocked use of the greenhouse for gardening through the Green Thumb Beginnings quest, you'll be able to plant seeds any time you're free to roam the monastery. The good news is that unlike faculty training, tea time and the like this doesn't use an action or take up Byleth's in-game time - so it's basically a 'free' source of professor EXP and other bonuses, much the same as fishing and using the advice box.
Crops planted rely on the passage of time, so once an exploration day ends the crops will grow. That means a week later, on your next exploration day, you can harvest the crops.
A player making the most of gardening will be planting and harvesting every single time they're set loose in the monastery. As Byleth's professor level increases, he or she will be able to plant more seeds at once for greater rewards.
There is a management aspect to gardening, too. You should consider the following:
- The type of crop. Seeds come in a variety of different colors, and they will yield different results and rewards.
- The level of the crop. Every crop has an associated level out of five, as with many things - the more stars, the better it is.
- Finally, consider Cultivation. These options available after planting and cost money, but they'll help ensure you create a healthy crop with good rewards. If you have the cash, you should always cultivate.
As a rule of thumb, while you can mix and match different seeds, the best and most predictable results are always when you plant a bunch of seeds of the same color and type.
We haven't found any specifically powerful gardening combos - but we have discovered a way to slightly game the random aspect of this mini-game to get more reliable results - and instead of using specific gardening combos, the advice is simply to group together seeds of the same type. While mixed seeds can have unexpected results, there's a lot to be said for the reliability of grouping seeds together, especially for getting certain rewards.
Gardening Rewards in Fire Emblem: Three Houses
Gardening well with net you a few different types of reward:
- Primarily, you'll get professor EXP for every single time you plant and harvest flowers. Professor EXP is valuable, as professor level determines how much time you have to do other things.
- On top of the experience bonus, you'll get items. There'll be food you can use for cooking, and flower items that can then be used to improve your support rank with characters. Check out our gifts and flowers guide for an idea of what flower you should be giving to each of the cast.
- Finally, other unique items can also drop this way, including powerful items that can increase a character's stats when given to them. More on these below.
Gardening Combos & Seeds to get Stat Boost Items
As well as raising your professor level by granting you a bunch of professor EXP, gardening is useful because just like how gardening can produce ingredients or gifts, you can also focus on certain crops in order to create special items that in turn can be used to raise a character's stats.
This is especially useful if you want to shape a recruited character towards a specific class or master class, and it's also just handy for taking the rough edges off the random stat gains characters get upon level up in Fire Emblem: Three Houses - sometimes a favorite character can end up a little uneven.
Given that gardening in the greenhouse doesn't take up time or action points, you can do this every single month. You'll want to cultivate the plants each time to ensure the booster item drops, so you'll need some gold aside - but it can prove invaluable as a way to help the grind.
All of the seed types can be purchased as of a certain point in Chapter 5. As a broad recommendation, as previously mentioned we advise that you avoid using complicated gardening combos of various seeds and instead suggest that you use seeds of the same type together and then, as mentioned, cultivate them to maximize your chance of one of the stat-increasing items dropping when you harvest.
Here's all of the gardening flower colors and what sort of stat-boosting items they tend to offer. Keep in mind there is an element of random luck to this and this is still a work in progress, so treat this as a guideline rather than gospel:
- White Flower Seeds: HP or Charm up
- Root Vegetable Seeds: Defense (DEF) up
- Purple Flowers Seeds: Strength (STR) up
- Yellow Flower Seeds: Magic (MAG) up
- Pale Blue Flower Seeds: Speed (SPD) up
- Green Flower Seeds: Dexterity (DEX) up
- Red Flower Seeds: HP or Resistance (RES) up