Carl's Sims 3 Guide - Skills, Traits, Careers, Rewards, and Lifetime Wishes for Ambitions and World Adventures

The Sims 3 Skills
Advanced TechAlchemyAthleticBot MakingCharismaCollectingConsignment
Laser RhythmLogicMartial ArtsMixologyNectar MakingPaintingPhotography
RidingScienceScuba DivingSculptingSocial NetworkingStreet ArtWriting

The Sims 3 Gardening Skill

How to GardenFind SeedsFertilizer
Plant QualityPlant ListOmni Plant, Steaks, and more

This Sims 3 Guide was originally written for the PC and Mac versions of the game, but also will help owners of the console versions - PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii. Please remember some info or numbers may have changed.

See How Gardening Works in The Sims 4 (With Plant List.

Updated for The Sims 3 SupernaturalThis guide has been updated with information for The Sims 3 Supernatural, which brings 11 new plants to the game in the form of bushes and mushrooms. These new plants are used primarily in the new Alchemy skill to make potions. To learn about all the new plants added in Supernatural, click here. Supernatural also brings a new alternate life state, the Fairy. They can use the powerful bloom power to make a plant grow to maturity or become harvestable. They also come with a hidden Green Thumb Trait, so essentially get six Traits.

The Sims 3's World Adventures expansion pack also brings some exciting additions to the gardening skill. There are now ten more plants that can be grown, and a new way to use fruit. Nectar making goes amazingly well with gardening. You can turn fruit into Nectar, which will age and grow in value over time. Read up on the Nectar Making skill to learn more. Of course the Plant List is updated to show the locations of the new plants along with their rarities and growth times.

This Guide will help newbies by providing a walkthrough for how to get started and learn Gardening in the Sims 3 and its Expansions. Information is provided for all aspects of this skill. I'll show you how to grow perfect plants, by evolving your plants' quality over several generations. I also provide a full plant list for the Sims 3, which can be useful for gardeners by helping them in finding the rare types they've never grown.

I'll try to provide all the secrets I've learned about gardening to help your Sims make the most money and get the best plants from your crop. Tips for the importance of sprinklers and how they can help to save time, upgrading sprinklers with auto-water and general guidelines for how to lay out your gardens are also provided.

A Money Tree in the Sims 3. It's found as an unknown special seed.Your Sim doesn't have to be a large-scale gardener to enjoy the benefits of the Gardening skill. Most Sims will want to someday grow and fish the ingredients for ambrosia. You can easily make a crop of only life plants. Fishermen will also appreciate a nice apple tree in the front yard. Packing an apple for lunch on a marathon day of fishing is a great idea. Used with the steel bladder lifetime reward, one little apple can really go a long way to helping your Sim stay out at the lake longer.

I am striving to learn everything I can about this helpful and profitable Sims 3 skill. The guide has been updated over a dozen times so far, and has slowly evolved into an all-inclusive resource for gardening. I've been incredibly lucky to have readers submit tips through our Sims 3 forum, ask questions and deliver feedback to help me improve it. This is the first guide, of the four hundred or so articles about gaming I've written that I've nurtured and grown to this degree, so I hope I can someday bring it to a level of perfection that rivals my Sim's garden!

Gardening Self Employment

With The Sims 3: Ambitions installed, gardeners can register self employed at the city hall after learning the first level of Gardening. Promotions depend on the amount earned gardening, and come with bonuses and the occasional trophy. Here's the breakdown:

Sims 3 Gardening Self-Employment
Rank NameEarnings Req.Bonus
Cucumber Smasher30-
Dirt Digger375-
Master Weeder1000-
Fertilizer Flinger2500500
Seed Sower150001500
Famed Farmer30,000-
Progeny of the Harvest60,0002500
Agricultural Mastermind-5000

Gardening Cheats

There are no cheats in the Sims 3 specific to gardening, but there are some that can be useful to you. First, you can cheat to raise the gardening skill by making your Sim never fatigue, you can then read skill books. See my guide to raising skills by cheating. There, you'll find information on maximizing mood and needs. Additionally, you can cheat to get any plant in the game. Press Control + Shift + C to open the cheat console, and type testingcheatsenabled true then buydebug. Now enter buy mode and go to sort by function. Click the ? and find the plants section. You can plant any type of fruit, vegetable, or special variety in the game. Harvest just one and you can have your gardener plant them to produce more.


Sprinklers will help a lot when gardening in the Sims 3. They'll allow your Sim to have a larger garden, because one of the steps from tend garden, the watering, is taken care of for you, every morning beginning at four o'clock. Plant your crops around sprinklers to maximize efficiency. In the morning, or before your Sim does their daily gardening routine, click on each of your Sprinklers to water all the plants in your garden. Give them a few seconds, then switch them right back off.

How to use automatic sprinklers
The biggest tip I can give you for gardening is that you should try to get your handiness skill to at least level four so that you can make automatic sprinklers. You'll find sprinklers under the outdoor activities tab. Once the sprinkler is placed, select it and try to upgrade. These sprinklers go off every morning and can water a small area.

In the Sims 3, one auto-water sprinkler upgrade can cover a load of plants and save your Sim a lot of time!How to Improve Sprinkler and General Gardening Efficiency
It's best to keep your garden tight together at first so that one sprinkler will do. It's also more efficient for your Sim to harvest when they can constantly be touching another plant without moving too much. Later, with certain abilities learned through the skill journal, you will have less weeds and your fertilizer can last longer. This also helps your garden to be more efficient.

Making Money Gardening

It takes a bit more work on your part to make money as a gardener than some other methods, but it's very rewarding gameplay and simoleon-wise. Gardening is just behind painting for my favorite way to be self employed in the game. You can use some of your harvest to help with the cooking skill, while the rest can be sold to the supermarket or used with Nectar Making.

To boost your Sim's money-making capacity from gardening, consider working toward making your entire garden perfect. You see, Sims can only spend so long gardening each day before they're exhausted or otherwise interrupted. You want your Sim to spend their time tending better quality plants.

Also keep in mind that it really isn't worth the time spent by your Sim or the resources consumed by fertilizing low cash-crops like lettuce and even death flowers. Why? Well, you will likely take a loss. Gardening can't blossom as a money-maker if you're fertilizing your Sim's tomatoes with all those Vampire Fish you've caught. Use something cheaper, like garlic for these plants. After all, with green thumb, super green thumb, all gardening challenges completed, and level 10 in the gardening skill, your Sim will be pushing plants very close to, if not always perfect anyway. Save the good stuff like perfect life fruit and vampire fish for your money trees and other high value crops!

The Best Plants to grow featuring Money Trees
Eventually the gardener's ultimate wish should be for a crop of Money Trees, Life Fruit plants, Flame Fruit and perhaps fruits for use with Nectar Making. Money trees are the best money makers of all the plants, and life fruit is used as an excellent fertilizer, sells at a decent rate, and is used in the ambrosia cooking recipe. Likewise, Flame Fruit is used in Angel Food Cake, which gives a nice moodlet.

In short, gardening is a great skill, and becomes even more useful to Sims with Nectar Making from the World Adventures expansion pack. It is easily one of my favorite skills in The Sims 3 because of its depth and complexity.

To learn more about the entire process of Gardening in The Sims 3, and how it can be used to make money, Click here.

How to GardenFind SeedsFertilizer
Plant QualityPlant ListOmni Plant, Steaks, and more
The Sims 3 Skills
Advanced TechAlchemyAthleticBot MakingCharismaCollectingConsignment
Laser RhythmLogicMartial ArtsMixologyNectar MakingPaintingPhotography
RidingScienceScuba DivingSculptingSocial NetworkingStreet ArtWriting

Comments (13)

Greenest of them all says...
Having a Fairy Simbot with "Steel Bladder" "meditative trance" and "Hardly Hungry" and a high enough alchemy level to mix potent invigorating elixirs will result amazing cash+LHP. Using "Loves the outdoors" "lucky" "gatherer" "friendly" and "excitable" traits. Quick trick with the elixir. If you have the well rested moodlet before you drink it, or sleep after you drink it, the moodlet will never go away. Furthermore, if you have the magic mirror and select magical makeover you'll get quick refill for social bar, faster than I can fly for fun bar. (located in mirrors, filter by supernatural). With all bonus's added up (including lot bonus, flame fruit, mood light and decoration bonus) you'll always have maximum pps. Mood light is another supernatural item. Lot of passive moodlets from supernatural. Gotta love 'em.
25th September 2012 3:36pm
Arthur Lopez says...
So yeah.. im kind of very late...

But i'd like to say that planted items get updated every in-game day at 5:25 A.M. (They grow further, become harvest-able, etc).

Guess that could help maybe... lol.
21st January 2014 9:28pm
Tessa says...
Hi, I have a question about the Supernatural plant spawners. I placed several of them, including some mushrooms. They don't seem to have any gardening options. Is this normal? They're just a small pile of dirt.
16th September 2012 4:21pm
Destiny says...
That happened to me too. I think you just have to wait for it to sprout a little bit. When I have a fairy I can just use the bloom ability to make it grow. Hope this helped :-)
9th January 2013 2:29am
Billie Sue says...
Help! I want to start a garden but i'm not understanding how to do so. I've got the seeds in my inventory but when I click on them, the only option given is 'Put away'. What am I doing wrong?
29th November 2012 3:38am
Megan says...
If you haven't got any skills you have just use lettuce and tomatoes
9th March 2014 5:23am
JainDo says...
I've been getting an issue with the new Seasons expansion where my plants will get stuck in the 'Harvest' stage, but can't be harvested. This is beginning to get frustrating since I've got a nectar maker, and I kinda need the plants...
4th December 2012 3:37am
morrisc13 says...
I'm getting the same thing!!! It is so frustrating!!!
18th December 2012 5:09am
Jayme says...
I,m having the same problem. Is there any way to fix it?
6th August 2013 5:39pm
AmbitiousAunt says...
I have omni plant boxes in the backpack of my Sims and he is at level 10 gardening. How do I use them? And what are they for? Thanks!
13th December 2012 3:59am
Joria says...
Omni plants can be fed various items, such as death fish or even very expensive books. In a day or so they will then give you back 3 to 4 exact copies of the item fed to the plant, increasing your profit tremendously. Ambrosia making can be so much easier if all you have to do to keep the supply of death fish and life fruit up is feed it to an omni plant! I've never kept any in a planter but I imagine if you take it out of the back pack you will be able to feed it the same as if planted in the ground.
6th March 2013 2:37pm
Cameron Power says...
I have The Sims 3 Island Paradise and I can't find any seeds.Either i'm not looking hard enough or there aren't any?I already have 2 apple trees only because I went to the store and bought apples.I want something a tiny bit more special.Can somebody help me?
31st December 2013 12:25am
katie heidt says...
does anybody know where to find seeds
19th April 2014 8:31pm
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