DragonVale is a game where you get to buy dragon habitats, breed your dragons and raise them. You can feed them to level them up, breed them to get even more and different dragons, and level up by gaining experience points. Your premium currency in the game is gems. With them, you can buy premium items, buy more coins and dragon treats, and generally speed up your improvement and performance in the game. There are ways to get free gems, but otherwise, you have to buy the gems with real life money. Don’t do that; bring on the free gems!
The first way to get free gems happens all the way back in the tutorial. As you go through the tutorial, the game will prompt you no less than three times to speed up the hatching of a dragon or some other event, and you will be given free gems by the game in order to do this without spending any of your starting gems. There is no need to actually use them, though. Wait for the dragon to hatch or the other events to finish. If you do this, you will get three free gems.
Another way to get free gems is to add friends and have them send you gems. You can only send gems to three people per day, so your best bet is to find three other friends and send gems back and forth to each other. Only three gems can go to each person but if you buy a Dragonsai tree (costs 100 gems), you can send double the amount of gems.
At level 10 you will unlock the colosseum, which you can buy for 50,000 coins. Enter a dragon into the colosseum and you have the chance to get free gems. If your dragon is second place with a silver trophy, you get 2 gems. If your dragon is first place with a gold trophy, you get five free gems.