The Terrarium - Garden Idle App for iPhone and android, created by Green Panda is a fun, simple and relaxing idle game where the aim is to plant seeds and grow your plants to create a window garden or terrarium.
I’ve had so much fun playing this, so I decided to write a complete guide on planting, unlocking and growing your plants in the game. It won’t help you live greener, but if you have an interest in plants, it is a great stress buster.
It’s the type of game that really doesn’t take up much time (which I like), its completely free, and you just check in on it periodically and plant new plants or upgrade them whenever you feel like it.
Each plant makes oxygen bubbles and are planted on what looks like window ledges. From what I can tell so far, there is no limit to the number of shelves and plants you can have.
There is no requirement to add friends or compete, just grow at your own speed.
There are so many unusual and beautiful plants in this game and its strangely satisfying to watch them grow and move them around to design your own windowsill garden. If you’re an impatient gardener, like me, you might want to know how each plant looks, but I’ll get to that in a minute.
It is family friendly and although some of the ads are a bit strange, I haven’t seen anything yet that I wouldn’t want my kids to see and it has no in app purchases. So many games have inappropriate ads, even little kids games will show clips of horror movies and M rated war games which I absolutely detest. So yes, there are ads in the game, but mostly optional and they allow you to earn 3x your bonuses and replenish boosters. It isn’t necessary to do this, which I also like a lot. There is nothing worse than finding a fun game only to discover you have to collect rare items in order to play.
Idle games usually require tapping to earn points, or in this case oxygen, and will also earn a certain amount while you are away from the game. Some idle games really mess with my head and are far from relaxing, but this one. Personally, I can’t be bothered with constantly tapping my screen so I prefer to use the boosters, level up and then use my oxygen for new plants or upgrades when I have a few minutes downtime.
It's a very easy to game to play and no need to read through complicated instructions. From the start, you will be guided on the basics and just follow the prompts.
This is how it appears when you first start the game:
Complete List of Terrarium Plants To Unlock (and How much they Yield)
A new Plant is unlocked every 5 levels you progress up until you hit level 150, and I expect in time they may add some more options. There are some pretty cool options, and it is feeding my desire to have more interesting real life indoor plants. There is a small wait between planting the seed and starting to see the plant grow, this can be accelerated by watching an advert, but I haven't bothered as they really don't take long.
I’ve searched for a list of levels and an indication of what the plants look like when fully grown and came up with absolutely nothing. So - Here’s a list of all the plants, which level they are unlocked, how much they cost to plant AND what the yield is every 10 levels (which is when their appearance changes)
I missed taking note of the planting cost of the Chinese Lantern, so if you do know, I'd love it if you added it into the comments and I can update the list, giving you credit of course)
Here's what the first several plants look like when fully grown, a big difference from the initial seed planting:
1. Snake Plant, 2. Aloe Vera, 3. Rubber Fig, 4. Maidenhair Fern
5. Zebra Plant, 6. Jade Plant, 7. Yucca, 8. Chain of Hearts.
9. ZZ Plant, 10. Moonstones, 11.Chinese Money Plant, 12. String of Pearls
13. Air Plant, 14. African Milk Tree, 15. Pine Bonsai, 16. Lotus
15. Heart Fern, 16. Corkscrew Rush, 17. Weeping Fig, 18 Corkscrew Albuca
(I'll keep adding to the list and screenshots of fully grown plants when I get a chance)
Don’t unlock plants too quickly
As you upgrade, your plant will change appearance and give you a greater yield of oxygen. It is tempting to work at simply unlocking all of the plants, but you really need to upgrade some existing plants as you go to increase your oxygen.
For example, the first plant is free and will start out by yielding just $1, but the plant you unlock at level 150 costs a whopping 14,5 million and will only yield around 38 oxygen. Your first plant is so much cheaper to upgrade and start earning.
Combine upgrading and unlocking as you can afford it. You don’t want to spend all your oxygen on costly plants only to yield tiny amounts. You may also want to be selective, there is no reason you have to have every plant, so get creative with what you love and skip the plants that don’t appeal. My favourite is the lotus and I plan to have several of these down the track.
You Cannot Remove Plants
You can move plants around and rearrange them, but you cannot delete them from your garden. I wish this was an option. This is a great reason not to plant a heap of Snake Plants and then have no space for new additions until the level up.
Unlocking Floors or Shelves in your Terrarium
You begin with 2 rows for planting and you can fit 4 plants on each row. When you level up to 20, you can unlock a new shelf (or floors as they are called in the app) in your garden. This happens every 20 levels and when available, will show you the cost. This continues beyond level 150, which is good to know as initially I just stuck to planting one of each plant in case I ran out of space.
3rd Floor (Level 20) – cost unknown
4th Floor (Level 40) costs 202.5k oxygen
5th Floor (Level 60) costs 640k oxygen
6th Floor (level 80) costs 1.56m oxygen
7th Floor (level 100) costs 3024m oxygen
8th Floor (Level 120) costs 6m oxygen
9th Floor (level 140) costs 10.24m oxygen
10th Floor (Level 160) costs 16.4 m oxygen
Boosters - Intensive Rain, Fertiliser and Repellent
Click the rainbow to access and view your boosters. Intense Watering is my favourite as it quickly boots the oxygen and is fun to watch.
You can use both the intensive watering AND the fertiliser booster at the same time and earn great amounts without having to repeatedly tap.
Do NOT level up during the booster time as you will miss out on some of your earnings.
If your watering runs out but you still have time on the fertiliser, then tap the 2 highest earning plants at the same time to maximise your earnings. I have really only managed to tap 2 plants at the same time. Most idle games will allow you to tap more items at once.
Level 2 of the Fertiliser Booster triples your yield for 11 seconds (if you don’t use the intensive watering, you might want to tap your biggest plants during this time). Each level up gives you an extra second of x3 production.
The Repellent gives you a certain amount of oxygen instantly, which of course increases when you level up this booster. This is handy if you’re getting close to levelling and up and don’t want to do a lot of tapping.
(You can see the timer in the top left hand side of your screen as in the picture above)
Table of Terrarium Boosters and rewards from level 1 to 30
Offline Earnings Booster
This is important as you want to have oxygen being created while your away, so you can enjoy planting and upgrading when you play instead of waiting. Upgrade it as much as you can for the most benefits, but it does get costly each level up and you will find yourself choosing between upgrading this booster, or upgrading a plant. From what I can tell, offline earnings booster is impacted by home many or the level of your plants. I sat on level 12 for sometime and initially got 805 oxygen per minute offline which went to 1180 and then 1250 without levelling up.
Level Up Bonuses
As your plants release oxygen, the meter bar progresses until you can level up. To level up, you must press the button and it will be orange when available. Each level has a bigger bonus attached to it and you can triple it by viewing a short ad.
I DO have a list of levels and the bonus value from 2 - 150. It is a little tedious to put into a table, so I haven't done so yet, but If anyone does want to see this, just ask in the comments below and I'll get onto it! But basically, the amount increases every level up and you can opt to watch an advert for 3x the bonus.
Playing Late at night?
Screen time before bed is not great for us, so switch on the night mode, I think it looks pretty awesome. Just head to the settings cog where you can switch this on or off and also your music , sound and vibration.
Beyond Level 150
Yes – the game goes beyond level 150! so if you are relying on bonuses in order to upgrade your plants, then you will still receive them each time you level up. Today, I'm on level 162(ish), so I guess we'll see if it is infinite...... eventually.
(See the comments below, One person is up to level 600!!)
Got any more tips or things you have noticed about the game?
Feel free to add any thoughts in the comments below.
I'd seriously love to know if anyone is growing any of these plants in real life. I have a beautiful Peace Lily but I noticed it isn't included in the game!
If you're looking for another cute mobile game, then I totally recommend checking out the Forest App which is based on productivity and reducing screen time while planting virtual trees. I've written a guide and review here if you want to check it out.