Today's Wordle 489 answer and hint: Friday, October 21

Today's Wordle being played on a phone
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Need a little help with today's Wordle? Perhaps you'd like someone to offer the answer to the October 21 (489) puzzle as quickly as possible, read a handcrafted hint, or just skim over some general tips designed to improve your game? Whatever you need, I'm sure you'll find it here.

Sometimes those greens, correct and immovable, throw up more questions than they do answers—completely shutting down possibilities I'd been chasing and making me rethink my approach. It's a fun experience, especially when it leads to the answer.

Wordle hint

Today's Wordle: A hint for Friday, October 21

This word's used to describe a group of trees of any type, anything from fruit-bearers to tall evergreens. Bamboo can also be grouped together like this, even though it's technically speaking not a tree but a grass. 

Wordle help: 3 tips for beating Wordle every day 

If there's one thing better than playing Wordle, it's playing Wordle well, which is why I'm going to share a few quick tips to help set you on the path to success:

  • A good opener contains a balanced mix of unique vowels and consonants. 
  • A tactical second guess helps to narrow down the pool of letters quickly.
  • The solution may contain repeat letters.

There's no time pressure beyond making sure it's done by midnight. So there's no reason to not treat the game like a casual newspaper crossword and come back to it later if you're coming up blank.

Wordle answer

Wordle today

(Image credit: Josh Wardle)

What is the Wordle 489 answer?

Let's get you over the finish line. The answer to the October 21 (489) Wordle is GROVE

Previous answers

Wordle archive: Which words have been used

The more past Wordle answers you can cram into your memory banks, the better your chances of guessing today's Wordle answer without accidentally picking a solution that's already been used. Past Wordle answers can also give you some excellent ideas for fun starting words that keep your daily puzzle solving fresh.

Here are some recent Wordle solutions:

  • October 20: DENIM
  • October 19: QUIRK
  • October 18: EXIST
  • October 17: STEIN
  • October 16: SPADE
  • October 15: CATCH
  • October 14: FLOOR
  • October 13: EQUAL
  • October 12: IONIC
  • October 11: VALID

Learn more about Wordle 

Every day Wordle presents you with six rows of five boxes, and it's up to you to work out which secret five-letter word is hiding inside them.

You'll want to start with a strong word (opens in new tab) like ALERT—something containing multiple vowels, common consonants, and no repeat letters. Hit Enter and the boxes will show you which letters you've got right or wrong. If a box turns ⬛️, it means that letter isn't in the secret word at all. 🟨 means the letter is in the word, but not in that position. 🟩 means you've got the right letter in the right spot.

You'll want your second go to compliment the first, using another "good" word to cover any common letters you missed last time while also trying to avoid any letter you now know for a fact isn't present in today's answer.

After that it's just a case of using what you've learned to narrow your guesses down to the right word. You have six tries in total and can only use real words (so no filling the boxes with EEEEE to see if there's an E). Don't forget letters can repeat too (ex: BOOKS).

If you need any further advice feel free to check out our Wordle tips (opens in new tab), and if you'd like to find out which words have already been used you'll find those below.

Originally, Wordle was dreamed up by software engineer Josh Wardle (opens in new tab), as a surprise for his partner who loves word games. From there it spread to his family, and finally got released to the public. The word puzzle game has since inspired tons of games like Wordle (opens in new tab), refocusing the daily gimmick around music or math or geography. It wasn't long before Wordle became so popular it was sold to the New York Times for seven figures (opens in new tab). Surely it's only a matter of time before we all solely communicate in tricolor boxes. 

When baby Kerry was brought home from the hospital her hand was placed on the space bar of the family Atari 400, a small act of parental nerdery that has snowballed into a lifelong passion for gaming and the sort of freelance job her school careers advisor told her she couldn't do. She takes care of PC Gamer's daily Wordle (opens in new tab) column and has somehow managed to get away with writing regular features on old Japanese PC games (opens in new tab). Much of her free time is spent writing about old, imported, and weird games for her terribly named site (opens in new tab), giving herself a headache trying to code another short text adventure in C64 BASIC, or saying "Wow, I forgot I had this!" whenever she stares at a bookcase stuffed with games.