For the version in Plants vs. Zombies Heroes, see Grave Buster.

Grave Buster is an instant-use plant and environment modifier appearing in both main series Plants vs. Zombies games. His only use is to destroy graveszombie gravestones, and tombstones, freeing up space for planting and preventing ambush zombies from spawning from them.


It is never stated outright what plant Grave Buster is supposed to be in any of the games he appears in. When asked, series creator George Fan stated that he designed Grave Buster in Plants vs. Zombies to resemble a gravestone himself so that the player can make the connection that his ability had to do with gravestones[1].

However, his appearance of bark-like vertical cracks and description of having a 'rock-like texture' seems to suggest that Grave Buster in the first game is meant to be decaying tree, similar to the ones found in typical depictions of a 'spooky graveyard' in media. His scrapped Plants vs. Zombies inspired redesign in Plants vs. Zombies: All Stars further supports this idea.

In Plants vs. Zombies 2, he was redesigned to resemble a mass of thorny vines. This could perhaps be a reference to how vines, typically ivy vines, are typically seen growing on old gravestones.


Plants vs. Zombies

Grave Buster is obtained by completing Level 2-3 and costs 75 sun to plant. He takes five seconds to fully destroy graves and Zombie Gravestones, during which he is vulnerable to zombie assaults. After completing his objective, Grave Buster will leave behind a random pickup item, ranging from a silver coin to a diamond or Zen Garden plant. If he is eaten before he destroys a grave, the grave pops back in its place.

Plants vs. Zombies 2

Grave Buster is now unlocked by finishing Ancient Egypt - Day 9. Aside from great changes in aesthetic, which changed him from a wooden like plant to a vine, Grave Buster has also received modifications in functionality: He is now a free plant, his recharge rate has been increased, and the time to fully destroy a tombstone has been reduced to four seconds. It also leaves dirt for a few seconds after eating a grave, which can be eaten. On the other hand, Grave Buster will no longer leave behind a consumable after destroying tombstones. He is unlocked in Ancient Egypt to show the player its ability in clearing tombstones. Instead of popping back when the Grave Buster is eaten, the grave slides back up quickly like how it spawns at the beginning of each level when you briefly preview the lawn.


Sound Description
Grave Buster chomping

Almanac entry

Gravebuster almanac pc

Plants vs. Zombies

Grave Buster

Plant Grave Busters on graves to remove the graves.

Usage: single use, must be planted on graves
Special: removes graves

Despite Grave Buster's fearsome appearance, he wants everyone to know that he loves kittens and spends his off hours volunteering at a local zombie rehabilitation center. "It's just the right thing to do," he says.

Cost: 75
Recharge: fast

Plants vs. Zombies 2

Grave Buster


SPECIAL: Bust Speed

FAMILY: Contain-mint

Grave Busters consume graves they're planted on.

Usage: single use, must be planted on graves
Special: removes graves

He may appear spiky or ill-tempered, but Grave Buster just wants to give you a big hug. Unless you're a puppy. He's terrified of those.


Contain-mint effect

When boosted by Contain-mint, Grave Buster can absorb an additional 900 DPS, and his grave clearing time is reduced to one second.

Level upgrades

Level Seed packets Coins Upgrades
Sun Cost Recharge
(Bust Speed)
Damage* Area*
1 0 0 0 10 seconds 300 dps 4 seconds None None
2 10 1,000 10 seconds 400 dps 3.5 seconds
3 75 5,000 9 seconds 500 dps 3 seconds
4 200 10,000 9 seconds 600 dps 2.5 seconds
5 400 20,000 8 seconds 700 dps 2 seconds
6 750 30,000 8 seconds 800 dps 1800 dps Tile
7 1,000 40,000 8 seconds 900 dps
8 1,250 50,000 7 seconds
9 1,500 60,000 7 seconds
10 2,000 75,000 6 seconds 1900 dps

*The Grave Buster after reaching Level 6 can explode after finishing eating a grave.

Plants vs. Zombies Online (China only) (Archived content)


Plants vs. Zombies

Grave Buster serves a vital role in Night levels as the only plant that can destroy graves. This gives the player a noticeable advantage, as not only can graves prevent planting, they can also summon reinforcements during flags, bolstering the already great amount of zombies and putting further pressure to the defending plants. The reward for destroying graves also present an opportunity for farming consumable items. When a Grave Buster is eating a grave, zombies can still come out of that grave. The Grave Buster will continue to eat it but the zombies will try to attack Grave Buster. Therefore, the player should be careful of the time to plant Grave Buster.

Which graves chosen to remove first depends entirely on the player's defensive strategy. Generally, getting rid of the leftmost ones first is preferred, as the left side is usually used for planting production and offensive plants. However, the player may also wish to destroy graves placed on the right side in order to plant a certain few plants, such as Spikeweed, Cherry Bomb and Doom-shroom.

Whack a Zombie

Grave Buster is an essential tool in this mini-game, as while it is still possible to defeat this level without him, the rapidly spawning graves will present a tremendous amount of challenge to the player, especially in the final flag. This is further improved that graves being destroyed by Grave Buster will not attempt to summon zombies, giving the player much needed time for planning and preparing defense.

Grave Buster usage should always be prioritized on the graves closest to the left. One of the best times to plant Grave Busters is when there is a pause in zombies coming out of graves.

Versus Mode

In Versus Mode, Grave Busters play a large role in destroying the Zombie Gravestones the zombie side must create in order to produce brains. They work just like they would on a normal grave, but there is no coin produced when they destroy one. However, great care should be exercised in defending Grave Buster, as the plant has a much slower recharge rate and cannot defend itself from zombie attacks.

Plants vs. Zombies 2

Grave Buster continues to find its use in Ancient Egypt, Dark Ages, and Modern Day as a tool for destroying tombstones, preventing them from blocking straight shots, and in Dark Ages' and Ancient Egypt's case, summoning zombies through ambushes. However, the task of removing tombstones, while being much more important, has been greatly decentralized - since tombstones can now be destroyed by other offensive plants. The player can instead utilize area-of-effect plants instead of Grave Buster to quickly destroy multiple graves. Still, Grave Buster remains as a specialized option to clear the field of obstructions, and will prove to be useful in both normal levels and Endless Zones.

Grave Buster is best used at the start of the level when there are barely any plants or zombies on screen, so that the Grave Buster will have almost no opposition when freeing up space. While it generally best to destroy the tombstones closest to the house, making way for sun producing or offensive plants, clearing graves closer to the zombies to make room for offensive plants like Cherry Bomb and Spikerock is another viable option.

Related achievements

Collect all 49 plants.
Book Learner


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  • Its appearance varies vastly between Plants vs. Zombies and Plants vs. Zombies 2. In the first game, it resembles more of a tree stump, while in the second, it resembles a bunch of thorny vines.
    • It is the one of two plants to receive a drastic redesign like this. The other one is Citron between Plants vs. Zombies 2 and Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2.
  • In Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, there is a hat for the Sunflower called "Grave Buster" which resembles the Grave Buster from Plants vs. Zombies.
  • Its name could be a reference to the popular movie Ghostbusters, although it may just be coincidence.
  • In the comic series, Grave Buster has his old look in Timepocolypse, and his new look in Grown Sweet Home.
  • Some of Grave Buster's sounds can be heard in various pieces of media, typically when a character is on the edge of a cliff.

Specific to Plants vs. Zombies

  • Its Almanac description and appearance is a common play on the phrase, "don't judge a book by its cover." Despite Grave Buster's fearsome appearance, its Almanac description describes a caring personality, a huge difference from the way it looks.
  • There is a glitch that can occur, when the player plants a Grave Buster that is not finishing eating the grave and show the seed selection click Crazy Dave's Twiddydinkies or Suburban Almanac and exit back to the seed selection, the player will hear a Grave Buster sound eating a grave. Also when this glitch happens and the player finishes picking seeds the Grave Buster will continue eating the grave without sounds.
  • It is the only Night obtained plant that is not a mushroom.
  • When Grave Buster is flattened, the player can hear the sound of it removing the grave after being crushed by a Gargantuar, Zomboni, or Catapult Zombie.
  • Even though it is only used at night, it is not considered a nocturnal plant and can be raised in the normal Zen Garden, and is sold for $8000 instead of $10,000.
  • It recharges much slower in Versus Mode, due to balancing matters.
  • There is a glitch in the Nintendo DS version when a new grave appears and the player places a Grave Buster a square away from the grave, it can be used and it will not destroy any graves.
  • The rocks from the grave it is eating look bigger in the iPhone and iPod versions.
  • Its online Almanac entry does not appear to be finished, because when the player clicks on it, it shows the last plant the player checked the entry on.
  • In the online version, it won't give you a reward because money and other prizes aren't available in that version.
  • It can still be selected on any level that is not a night level, but they cannot be used, therefore it wastes one seed slot.

Specific to Plants vs. Zombies 2

  • If transformed into a sheep by a Wizard Zombie, the tombstone will recede to its normal phase, but if the grave is destroyed, the sheep will remain there. Once it becomes Grave Buster again, it will bust nothing. Also when transformed, its dirt will remain.
  • It is the first plant in this game that went through a major redesign. The other plants that were redesigned are Spikeweed, Starfruit, and Tangle Kelp.
  • Instead of kicking Grave Buster when its jam is playing, a Punk Zombie will bite the Grave Buster.
  • Despite having a sun cost of 0, it is available in some Last Stand levels, namely the ones in every world but Ancient Egypt, Dark Ages and Modern Day.
    • In the three mentioned worlds, it is because there are tombstones in said worlds.
      • It is unnecessary to use Grave Buster in the other worlds, as there are no tombstones, resulting in a waste of a seed slot.
  • It reused Potato Mine's explosion animation when it is exploded.

See also


V · T · E
Plants (Tower defense)
Plants vs. Zombies
Day Peashooter · Sunflower · Cherry Bomb · Wall-nut · Potato Mine · Snow Pea · Chomper · Repeater
Night Puff-shroom · Sun-shroom · Fume-shroom · Grave Buster · Hypno-shroom · Scaredy-shroom · Ice-shroom · Doom-shroom
Pool Lily Pad · Squash · Threepeater · Tangle Kelp · Jalapeno · Spikeweed · Torchwood · Tall-nut
Fog Sea-shroom · Plantern · Cactus · Blover · Split Pea · Starfruit · Pumpkin · Magnet-shroom
Roof Cabbage-pult · Flower Pot · Kernel-pult · Coffee Bean · Garlic · Umbrella Leaf · Marigold · Melon-pult
Upgrades Gatling Pea · Twin Sunflower · Gloom-shroom · Cattail · Winter Melon · Gold Magnet · Spikerock · Cob Cannon
Others Imitater · Explode-o-nut · Giant Wall-nut · Giant Sunflower · Giant Marigold · Sprout · Reverse Repeater
Plants vs. Zombies 2
Player's House Peashooter · Sunflower · Wall-nut · Potato Mine · Cabbage-pult
Ancient Egypt Bloomerang · Iceberg Lettuce · Grave Buster · Bonk Choy · Repeater · Twin Sunflower
Pirate Seas Kernel-pult · Snapdragon · Spikeweed · Spring Bean · Coconut Cannon · Threepeater · Spikerock · Cherry Bomb
Wild West Split Pea · Chili Bean · Pea Pod · Lightning Reed · Melon-pult · Tall-nut · Winter Melon
Frostbite Caves Hot Potato · Pepper-pult · Chard Guard · Stunion · Rotobaga
Lost City Red Stinger · A.K.E.E. · Endurian · Stallia · Gold Leaf
Far Future Laser Bean · Blover · Citron · E.M.Peach · Infi-nut · Magnifying Grass · Tile Turnip
Dark Ages Sun-shroom · Puff-shroom · Fume-shroom · Sun Bean · Magnet-shroom
Neon Mixtape Tour Phat Beet · Celery Stalker · Thyme Warp · Garlic · Spore-shroom · Intensive Carrot
Jurassic Marsh Primal Peashooter · Primal Wall-nut · Perfume-shroom · Primal Sunflower · Primal Potato Mine
Big Wave Beach Lily Pad · Tangle Kelp · Bowling Bulb · Guacodile · Banana Launcher
Modern Day Moonflower · Nightshade · Shadow-shroom · Dusk Lobber · Grimrose
Money Snow Pea · Power Lily · Torchwood · Imitater · Starfruit · Chomper · Dandelion · Toadstool · Strawburst · Cactus · Electric Blueberry · Jack O' Lantern · Grapeshot · Cold Snapdragon · Blooming Heart · Escape Root · Gold Bloom · Wasabi Whip · Explode-O-Nut · Kiwibeast · Bombegranate · Apple Mortar · Witch Hazel · Parsnip · Missile Toe · Hot Date · Caulipower · Electric Peashooter · Solar Tomato · Holly Barrier
Gems Squash · Jalapeno · Hypno-shroom · Pea-nut · Homing Thistle · Ghost Pepper · Sweet Potato · Sap-fling · Hurrikale · Fire Peashooter · Lava Guava · Shrinking Violet · Electric Currant · Aloe
Mints Fila-mint · Pepper-mint · Winter-mint · Reinforce-mint · Bombard-mint · Ail-mint · Enchant-mint · Contain-mint · Enforce-mint · Arma-mint · Conceal-mint · Spear-mint · Appease-mint
Seed packets Enlighten-mint · Shadow Peashooter · Goo Peashooter · Sling Pea · Snap Pea · Zoybean Pod · Electrici-tea · Dazey Chain · Blastberry Vine · Pokra · Imp Pear · Pyre Vine · Pumpkin · Ice Bloom · Ultomato
Others Marigold
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