Actually I haven't had a problem with evolving plants. You just go to find the right fertilizer. If you can find grow fruit and plant it, I believe it is available in OD retweet to buy. That is the best fertilizer and its special effect allows to plant to go to one level. I hope the update didn't change it, but I haven't tried it after the update.
Since you said this I've been trying the bees. It's been almost 30 sim days and my roses which get bee action are still stuck about 10 pixels shy of leveling up from excellent. Most of the plants are not budging at all, I had one plant evolve since the bees and they pretty much go several times a day. I think this is a real bug I don't know why some of us have it and some don't they do not improve at all.
Mine are sheltered if that makes a difference.
I might have some more insight on this issue. It seems to me that there's a few problems here. I've also tested with no mods and they occur.
1. Fertilizing the garden sometimes the fertilizer doesn't stick. I can tell my sim to fertilize the same plant over and over sometimes it just doesn't stick. I do line up 2 or 3 at a time, I don't know if that matters since they perform the animation over the plant I assume it's handled. Also my plants are all in 2x2 planters in a line (as close as they can be) indoors. It would be nice if I could fertilize the whole box instead of single plants.
2. I've noticed 3 separate times now plants showing the evolve sparkle, but then the sparkle vanishes and they're back to 2/3rds or 1/2 the way towards evolving. This always happens between excellent and magnificent (or perhaps that's just where I personally am sticking) which means nothing progresses past excellent unless I am watching and catch it and my sim gets herself over there in time. It's VERY subtle.
3. When I fertilize plants within a sim hour many want to evolve but if I don't make it in time the plants evolve thing vanishes.
4. Bees and fertilizer appear to have no effect because of the vanishing evolve status (It's VERY SUBTLE, you wouldn't even notice the sparklies in time if you weren't watching only the garden)....however so far bees have only triggered evolve on a handful of plants in my garden which suggests that maybe some plants are broken and others not.
5. Hiring a gardener and keeping the plants tended appears to have no effect. I have noticed that the plants don't appear to have wet soil a lot in my game unless I specifically water all versus tend garden.
I forced my rose to evolve into magnificent and it's not moved an inch past half way towards the next level, despite fertilizing it twice and also despite being loved by bees and tended daily. It evolved to that point and has not budged since. I really hope this info helps.
It's very annoying. I've done a game repair and folder refresh as well on multiple occasions. Also you wouldn't notice the evolve vanishing, it is so subtle you would think you were crazy. I only noticed because my rose finally had the sparkles. I clicked on it to be sure and evolve was there but I wanted to finish what my sim was doing with the bees first..when she was done I clicked the rose and it was gone. If I hadn't been checking the rose every time my sim was gardening and gardening at that exact moment I'd never have seen it. It only flashed once or twice before vanishing.
Yes to all of those. I even started a new household in CAS and went and harvested the old one (to start with better harvest). I definitely have checked without cc because you shouldn't be reporting anything here without checking that first. I have started new saves but I did import my old family from the gallery with the harvest on them. I've started a couple of new saves. This broke for me with one of the updates but I can't remember which one. It used to be pretty frequent that plants needed evolving so much so that I got an evolve all mod because it was annoying LOL. I removed that last week to double check it wasn't causing any issues though and no changes. Also played for two seasons (spring and summer) without mods after my refresh.
Theoretically it could be a save issue but I think it's a game one because new saves only evolve up to excellent as well. Wish I could figure it out.
March - last edited March
Well, it's not a game issue because then it'd be doing it for everyone else. I've got well over 3,000 hours in The Sims and I've never seen anything like that in mine.
The only thing else easy I can think of is remove all your mods and CC, everything from the mods folder. Then start a new world with a new household and see if you get the same results.
If you've tried all of that, and it STILL has the issue... I'd consider doing a clean data folder. Basically back up your entire Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 4 folder somewhere and wipe the entire thing and start clean. It's a bit extreme but you've tried everything else, right?
I've literally done all of that, nothing helps. It could be something specific with my game versus yours because I am seeing lots of complaints online everywhere about this ranging from plants not evolving to wanting a fertilize all button because they're having trouble getting perfect plants. 75 of those people clicked me too on this issue as well. It could be a specific combination of packs or that I once paid for deluxe but don't now. It could be the order I bought the packs or maybe an update just borked on some people. Who knows, it's obviously rare and unclear what the issue and cause are but that doesn't mean it's not real. It could be a specific game item or way we're building or placing them. It could be pure chance and all but 4 of my plants have it and only one of yours has it and therefore you don't notice. Look close at your plants and see if any of them don't evolve past any level...you might be surprised to notice your garden of a long time has only low level plants.
I've heard people say to me it's because of an old update changing plant values and fertilizing so I got new plants. I've heard people say debug plants are buggy so I made sure not to use those. It could be an error or something tripping for me or who knows what. I've seen software error for different people for no real reason before. I used to work with forums and I've seen some weirdness just because it didn't like the server or a file transferred as ascii instead of binary or someone didn't end the file right and left off ?> which shouldn't matter but for some servers meant the website broke completely. We all have different environments...the game won't behave the same for everyone in every situation.