The Skillz – Farming
Farming, who likes it? You have to plant your crops and sit there. Watching them.
Many people have gotten the wrong idea about the skill called Farming. Some thinks its worthless because it does not directly affect the skill they like. Some think its a waste of time to have to get it to 99 so that you have all the skills maxed. Some think its a waste of time for no reason at all!
I will not stay on the bad points of Farming. One reason is because there arena’t as many as people think and the other is because some people don’t like the bad news upfront. So I’ll give you some bad news along with loads of good news about the skill.
First thing you should know is that its a safe and easy skill to do and it won’t cost you anything if you don’t mind working for your levels.
To start Farming you will need either some potato seeds or alot of genie lamps. Let’s assume you’re doing it the normal way and using seeds. Before we can start planting we must acquire something to plant. So let’s look at…
If you have a thieving level of 27 or more you can steal seeds from Olivia’s seed stalls in Draynor. The only problem about this is that if you fail the guards will come over and attack you. A higher level player won’t mind this since the guards will hardly scratch them. But the lower level players or ‘Skillers’ will since they either can’t take the hits or don’t do combat. At thieving level 38 and up you can you can steal from Master Farmers which are a little easier, I think, to acquire seeds from. If you fail them they will hit you for two damage and stun you for a few seconds.
If you’re not so keen on stealing or would just rather get the seeds another way then you can do one of the following: Buy them from Olivia, pick them up off the ground, Buy them from other Players, or fight monsters.
I find it easier to steal seeds but whatever you way like best to acquire them is fine. Here’s a list of all the seeds you can acquire from Stalls and Master Gardeners.
Bittercap Mushroom Spore
During your hunt for seeds you want to collect every you get. They will all be useful, especially those little green seeds called herb seeds. They can be worth alot, in Experience and cash, i’ll talk about them later.
Once you have accouple hundred of all the low level seeds you’re ready to start farming. Now its time to look at…
Where to farm – Allotments
There are alot of places to farm in RuneScape as I’m sure you’ve seen, but there are certain areas which are better then others for various reasons.
Since you most likely have level 1 farming you will need to plant potato seeds in an allotment patch. Allotment patches have four patches to plant in: Vegetable (X2), Flower, and Herb.
Allotment patches are located North of Catherby, North of East Ardougne, South-east of Falador, and North-west of Port Phasmatys. To get to Port Phasmatys you must have completed the Priest in Peril quest. Its not hard to get to the Allotment patch near Falador but it is out of the way. (Unless you’re killing chickens for feathers, killing cows for hides, or for some reason unknown to us you’re picking cabbages.) The Allotment to the North of Ardougne can be a good one to use if you are: fishing in the Fishing Guild, cutting Magic trees, stealing in Ardougne, or mining near the Legend’s Guild. The allotment patch near Catherby is the most useful in my opinion, and there’s a bank!
Here’s a few things you can do while you wait for your crops at Catherby:
Fish tuna, lobsters, swordfish, sharks and more at the nearby seashore
Chop Yew trees to the West or chop oaks near the bank
Check the general store for good buys or collect supplies for various skills from the charter ships
Or do anything that requires a bank in the Catherby bank
For me North of Catherby is the best allotment patch to use because of all the possible things to do. Of course its all up to you which allotment patch you choose to use, you could use them all if you wanted!
Now that you’ve chosen an allotment patch to use we can talk about…
Learning to Farm
You don’t have to break your back hoeing each and every row in RuneScape.
To start you will need to acquire: a rake, a seed dibber, a spade, a trowel, and a watering can(8).
You can either buy these at a farming shop which is located near every allotment patch or you can kill farmers for them. Whichever way you wish to obtain them.
Once you have them you will need to use your rake on the allotment patch (Vegetable, they’re the big patches) to rake the weeds out. Once that is done you can either use compost on the patch if you’ve bought or made some or you can just use your seeds on the patch. You need at least three seeds to plant an allotment patch. You also must have your seed dibber in your inventory while doing this. Once you’ve put the seeds in the patch you should water them. You don’t have to but you should if you want a better chance of your plants growing to fruition.
Now comes the part everybody hates.(Or do they?) The wait.
Now we have to wait…and wait…and wait…This is where people think about farming in the wrong way and where they get their hatred for it. But when you come to think of it waiting 30 minutes for a crop of corn to come in isn’t anything when you look at what real farmers have to go through. Since you’ve learned how to farm we’ll now discuss…
The boredom of Farming
First thing you don’t want to do is sit there and watch your crops. You will get bored very fast if you stand near your crops. Even if you have something to alch, go somewhere where other people are. Or join an active Clan Chat Channel. Either will work but I suggest doing something else away from your crops.
Don’t expect them to be done when a skill guide says they should. Remember, their growing times are completely random. Yes they have set Min / Max growing times but those times only Jagex knows. If a guide or friend says the average growing time is 35 minutes then remember that they said average, not max.
Here are a few things you could do to stop boredom from coming upon you.
Go do another skill, there are many things to do near almost every farming patch.
Check your other patches, start growing in several different farming locations and then walk between all your active patches.
Play a minigame, there are alot of short minigames you could play while waiting for your crops.
Gather more seeds so you can continue to farm.
Hopefully i’ve given you a few ideas about how to fight boredom while farming. Now let’s talk about…
Farming more crops
You’ve grown your first Potato, or maybe you’ve already grown a cabbage or tomato. Whichever, you’re starting to farm now. It wasn’t to hard to make those first few levels was it? Raking the patches before planting gives good experience at the lower levels.
Now that you know what you’re doing we can talk about more advanced crops. No, you can’t grow a spirit tree with only level 20 farming. If you do have level 20 you can grow quite alot of crops though.
You can grow from all of the following categories: Vegetables, Flowers, Herbs, Hops, Bushes, and Wood Trees. Quite a variety.
With so many types of crops to plant i’m sure boredom is far from you by now. Unless of course you don’t have enough seeds left. If this is the case then go gather more while you wait for your crops.
Acorns would be a good thing for you to plant at your level since they give nearly 500 experience for checking their health. You would want to have them watch though, i’ll go into that later on though.
Pretty soon you’ll be able to grow lots of crops which can benefit other skills. Right now, though, you can plant Sweetcorn which is good experience and something you’ll need for future farming. And even if you don’t use them for farming you can always cook them and eat them!
Soon you’ll be able to plant Limpwurt flowers. These will give you 3 Limpwurt roots when picked along with a good amount of experience.
Once you can plant apple trees you should. These are really good experience at your level. This is also where your sweetcorn comes in handy, this will be talked about more in the next part.
Since you’ve got so many patches growing now and you’re starting to grow trees we should talk about…
No, they’re not out to steal your crops, infact they’re their here to help you.
Gardeners can watch almost any crop you can plant. If you have a gardener watch your crops then they are safe from death. No crop can die with a gardener watching it. These services are not free however, they do come at a cost. This should not be a problem for you if you’ve been planting each new crop whenever you can, and saving them. I recommend saving every fruit (not just actual fruit but everything you grow) unless you need bank space. The crops you harvest will be useful for other gardening purposes.
Now, about your apple tree. Once you plant it talk to the nearby gardener and ask them if they could watch your crops. For the apple tree they will ask for 9 raw sweetcorn. Remember that corn we saved earlier? Go get it and bring it to the gardener and they’ll watch your crops until they’re fully grown.
I won’t tell you what every gardener payment is because that would make skill guides obsolete and we don’t want that.
Some gardeners require rather exotic payment such as coconuts, cactus spines, or even ground suqah tooth!
Well now you know how to use these nice people to your advantage and you probably have a higher farming level now so we can talk about…
Farming Advanced crops
50 Farming? Wow you’re a pro at this skill.
You’re ready to start farming higher level crops and trees. These can be very useful but you’re going to have to wait till the next section before we see how useful they are.
Now you can grow every Vegetable, Flower, and Hop in RuneScape. You can also grow over half of the crops in Herbs, Bushes, Fruit Trees, and Wood Trees. You should be gaining experience pretty fast but the levels start to slow down.
Watermelons are always a good thing to plant, they give great experience, can be used as gardener payment, or eaten if you’re feeling a bit hot after all this farming.
Wood trees are the best experience, though they cost the most to buy from players. Fruit trees are pretty good experience also and don’t cost much. the only problem with them is that they take so long to grow.
You almost always want to have the gardener watch your crops now, unless you’re planting low level ones.
I think you know everything needed for farming now. Now I will tell you about…
The Benefits of farming
Benefits? What Benefits you say?
Well there are many benefits of farming, take your dragon dagger (++) for instance. How did you get that? Well most likely you bought it already poisoned and ready to use, but do you actually know how it was made? Using the herblore skill to mix Nightshade and poison ivy berries together into a vial of coconut milk an herbalist creates a ‘Super strong weapon poison potion’ which is then applied to your Dragon Dagger to create a Dragon Dagger (++).
Nothing so special about that, all you have to do is go out and buy the berries and coconut milk, you can get the nightshade yourself. But wait a minute. If there is no farming skill how do you acquire Poison ivy berries and coconut milk? You can’t. This is one way that Farming affects PKing. You can’t poison your enemy and it hit for a reasonable amount of damage without using Super strong weapon poison, which can only be made by using ingredients that are grown.
Also you can grow your own herbs, you no longer have to pay for all your herbs. Every tradeable herb in RuneScape can be grown with the sufficient farming level. This allows more people to raise herblore and use potions.
With wood trees you have your own private tree to cut. You never have to worry about someone else cutting it down. And you can grow every type of wood tree. Also many of the Tree patches are close to a bank which makes them good spots for private Woodcutting.
With flowers you can grow woad leaves for making blue dyes or better then that, Limpwurt plants. You can harvest 3 Limpwurt roots from one Limpwurt flower. This makes it easier for herbalists to acquire them which makes their be a bigger supply of Strength and Super Strength potions.
In the vegetable patches Tomatoes, Onions, Cabbages, Strawberries, Watermelons, and Cooking apples can be used to bake Garden and Summer pies. Garden pies which heal 12 also give a +3 bonus to Farming, helpful for planting higher level crops. Summer pies which heal 22 are not only one of the best healing foods in the game but they also give +10% energy and +5 agility levels when eaten. (These affects are for each half, except for the healing affect.)
Lastly there’s Spirit Trees. You can grow your very own spirit tree in any of the spirit tree patches. Of course doing such an awesome task requires a very high farming level of 83. Also Spirit trees do not often produce seeds like normal wood trees, this is because only 0.001% of the flowers on Spirit trees get pollinated.*
I’ve left out a few categories, haven’t I? Well this is because though they are worth planting there fruit isn’t very popular. I’ll let you decide how many uses you can find for the various crops in these left out categories.
I know you’re probably disappointed that Farming mainly only directly affects herblore but that’s to be expected. After all, Farming is the act of growing something Natural and Herblore is the act of changing something natural into something useful.
Now we’re at the end of this article, I hope it inspired you to start using that green thumb that everyone has.. Don’t forget to go to Martin the Master Gardener in Draynor to get your cape when you reach 99.
* This has never been said by Jagex, I just made it up because it sounded good.