Last updated on September 12, 2023
Song of the Dryads | Illustration by Lars Grant-West
As a Magic player, you’ve probably run into situations where you need to remove a troublesome permanent from the battlefield. As a green player you may think that you’re limited in your removal options, but fear not! Green doesn’t have the wide variety of direct damage or destroy effect spells of other colors, but it still has a variety of powerful removal spells that can take care of problematic creatures, artifacts, enchantments, and even lands.
Stick around if you want to learn about the best green removal spells. You’ll find the key interactions and synergies that some of these green removal spells have to exploit their full potential along the way. Let’s get into it!
Beast Within | Illustration by Dave Allsop
Green removal spells are green spells that can destroy, exile, or just generally get rid of permanents on the battlefield. Fun fact, green removal tends to focus on using “natural” ways to destroy other permanents, like Naturalize or Force of Vigor.
For this list I only considered spells that fall into this category. Cards like Vines of Vastwood are mostly used as combat tricks. Even though you may win combats with them, I won’t include them because A) there are a lot of them, and B) they don’t destroy anything on their own.
It may be pricey, but Desert Twister does a solid job of destroying any permanent.
#28. Elvish Skysweeper + Bamboo Grove Archer
Plummet is a simple yet effective instant speed removal spell that destroys any target creature with flying.
#23. Mwonvuli Acid-Moss
I like Mwonvuli Acid-Moss a lot because it’s a spell that has another utility outside of destroying a land: it also ramps you further into the game. It’s worth mentioning that you can fetch a green Triome with it.
#22. Mage Duel + Epic Confrontation + Choose Your Weapon
There are tons of fight spells with an upside printed in almost every set, so naming them separately is pointless. Some of the most notable ones include Mage Duel, Epic Confrontation, and Choose Your Weapon.
Lignify is a useful spell card for green-based decks looking to neutralize powerful creatures or abilities. While it doesn’t remove the targeted creature from the battlefield, it can make it less of a threat.
Serene Heart, Back to Nature, and Reverent Silence are similar to Creeping Corrosion, but they all target enchantments instead. An advantage of Reverent Silence specifically is its flexibility. You can give your opponents six life to cast it for free if you control a Forest.
Force of Vigor is a powerful green instant that can be cast for free if you exile a green card from your hand. It allows you to destroy up to two artifacts or enchantments on the battlefield, making it a useful removal spell for green-based decks.
I enjoy using Thorn Mammoth effect when I can have multiple creatures entering the battlefield as it can remove multiple creatures without attacking.
More like King Kong, Kogla, the Titan Ape doesn’t only fight creatures on sight but also loves destroying artifacts and enchantments when it attacks.
#14. Tovolar’s Huntmaster / Tovolar’s Packleader
I love Mold Shambler because it’s a creature that can deal with any noncreature permanent on the battlefield that may be causing trouble. The downside is that its effect can’t recur with the likes of Ephemerate.
What’s better than destroying any artifact or enchantment? Exiling them, and that’s exactly what Fade into Antiquity does.
Terastodon is a big green creature that can destroy up to three noncreature permanents when it enters the battlefield. This can include artifacts, enchantments, or lands. In return, their controllers get a 3/3 Elephant for each permanent destroyed this way.
This is very fun if you destroy three of your lands, because you get 18 power for nine mana on the field in return.
I may be biased in the ranking, but Acidic Slime is one of my all-time favorite creatures. It’s a decent blocker with the potential to destroy any artifact, enchantment, or land when it enters the battlefield.
Primal Might has to be, without a doubt, one of the best fight and pump spells. You can choose how much you’re willing to pay to both outgrow your opponent’s creatures and remove one of them.
It may not seem like it, but Primal Command is a versatile spell that can gain life, search for creatures, shuffle cards into libraries, and (more importantly) put a noncreature permanent on top of a library.
You can get rid of any noncreature permanent for good if you can combine the last ability with the shuffle effect.
Master of the Wild Hunt was one of the best 4-mana creatures in its Standard thanks to its ability to effortlessly kill opponents’ creatures.
#5. Prey Upon + Blizzard Brawl + Tail Swipe
There are a lot of fight spells in green, some pricier than others, but Prey Upon is the cheapest of them despite being a sorcery. Blizzard Brawl is strictly better if you run multiple snow permanents in your deck. Tail Swipe is also up there if you cast it on your turn.
Like fight spells, there have been a lot of “bite” spells printed throughout the history of the game. The most notable ones are Ram Through and Devouring Tendrils, because they’re among the cheapest ones out there.
Reclamation Sage not only provides a solid body for its cost, it also enters the battlefield with the ability to destroy any artifact or enchantment of your choice.
Removal is generally very intuitive to use because you just see what you want to kill and proceed to do so. But in green’s case it’s somewhat narrow, so you may need to get creative and exploit the removal potentials. Here are some synergies that you may be interested in trying.
Deathtouch creatures are particularly good to pair with fight and bite spells because they can kill any creature with little to no effort. Of course, bite spells are what you’re most inclined to use in this case, but fight spells work pretty much the same way if you have a small deathtouch creature with lots of toughness.
Majestic Metamorphosis is an example that emphasizes that you can turn your opponent’s creatures into artifacts or fliers to later target them with removal that deals with those kinds of permanents. I’ve mostly seen this strategy used in Limited games, but you can also abuse this interaction in pretty much any other format.
Thorn Mammoth lets you abuse multiple enter the battlefield triggers to clean the board of your opponents’ creatures.
Waking the Trolls
Some cards, like Acidic Slime, enable you to destroy your opponent’s lands. While this is annoying for your opponents, you can abuse it even further by using cards like Waking the Trolls to create tokens based on the excess of lands you have compared to your opponents. All thanks to the hard work you did destroying them earlier.
Back to Nature | Illustration by Howard Lyon
At this point we all agree that green may not be the first color you think of when it comes to removal spells in Magic, but it still features a wide variety of powerful options that can deal with a range of threats on the battlefield. From creature removal to artifact and enchantment destruction, green has tools to keep up with what your opponents can play.
This color can destroy multiple types of permanents at once, gain life, or even ramp up your mana base to make a huge difference in a game. What do you think? Did you like the list, or did I leave out any important cards? Let me know in the comments or over on Draftsim’s official Twitter.
That’s all from me for now. Stay safe, stay healthy, and wash your hands!
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