Introduction: Farming in Minecraft

Picture of Farming in Minecraft

Farming can be almost as important as mining in Minecraft. Farming will give you food to eat and also provide you with supplies you cannot get otherwise. There is basic vegetable and melon farming, but you can also farm trees, mushrooms, cacti, sugar cane and cocoa beans.

Don't forget to check out my other Instructable, How to Survive your first day in Minecraft, if you haven't played yet!

Step 1: Farm Setup and Tools

Picture of Farm Setup and Tools

Time to get started farming, there are some tools that are nice to have before you get started.


  • Hoe - two sticks stacked in the middle and then the 2 of the material you want to make it out of on top and in the top right square = a hoe
  • Fence - 6 sticks in two rows next to each other = 2 fences.
  • Fence Gate - 4 sticks on either side of 2 wooden planks = 1 gate
  • Torches are good since most plants need light to grow. From How to Survive your First Day of Minecraft 1 stick below 1 piece of coal = 4 torches.
  • Water - plants need water to grow, most plants do not need to be planted directly next to water to grow. You need at least 1 block of water for a 9 by 9 section of land (the water would be in the middle). You can use iron buckets to gather water or you can farm next to existing water.
  • Bone Meal - is created from bones (which can be obtained when you kill skeletons) and is used to accelerate the growth of plants.

Farm Setup

  • Clear some land. It is nice to have land not near a hill as if you are going to fence it off, the fence will keep things out unless they jump down from a hill into the fenced in area.
  • You will use your hoe to create farmland. Using it will make the soil appear to have rows on it.
  • Fences are nice to keep mobs out of your farms. Sometimes plants can be destroyed by trampling and who wants a creeper destroying all their hard work? Why use a fence instead of just blocks? Anything can jump on top of one block, but a fence is 1.5 blocks high so only spiders can jump over them (or anyone standing on a plateau or hill nearby)
  • You can just break a piece of fence to get in or create a gate which is handier.
  • When you pour water in a long hole (as I have shown) it will flow unless you continue to pour water in in different spots. The holes you see I have created each needed 5 buckets of water to make the water stop flowing.
  • Torches can very handily sit on top of the fence posts.

Step 2: Wheat

Picture of Wheat


  • Needs to be planted on farmland and needs water, but does not need to be right next to water to grow, but if it is planted next to water, the farmland will be hydrated and help the plant grow faster.
  • You can collect seeds by destroying grass. Not all grass will produce seeds, but if you just start destroying a field of grass, you will end up with quite a few.
  • The tips of the soil will turn brown and the rest of it more yellow when it is ready to harvest.
  • Wheat is used to make Hay Bails (for decoration) and wheat (to eat). It cannot be eaten as is.
  • Used for making Cakes and Cookies
  • When you harvest wheat, you will get wheat and then one or more seeds to plant more.

Facts about Wheat

  • Wheat is probably the most commonly farmed plant in Minecraft. It is really easy to obtain seeds and grow.
  • Wheat is used for breeding animals including Sheep and Cows.
  • The seeds used to grow wheat are used to breed Chickens.
  • Is found in about every village garden.

Step 3: Carrots and Potatoes

Picture of Carrots and Potatoes



  • Grows on Farmland block
  • Unlike wheat, you plant a carrot to grow carrots (instead of seeds)
  • The tops of the carrots will show when ready to be harvested.

Facts about Carrots

  • Can be eaten raw and, actually, cannot be cooked.
  • Used to bread Pigs
  • Attach to a Fishing pole (and used in combination with saddles) to ride Pigs
  • Can be found in village gardens
  • Once in a while a zombie will drop one when killed, but it is rare
  • Used for breeding Pigs.
  • Can be combined with a fishing rod and used to ride pigs (a saddle is also necessary).



  • Grows on Farmland block
  • Planted directly in soil like carrots (no seeds)
  • The potatoes will start to show when it is ready to be harvested.

Facts about Potatoes

  • Can be found in village gardens
  • once in a while a zombie will drop one when killed, but it is rare
  • Can be eaten raw but has only 1 food point
  • Can be cooked in a furnace to make a Baked Potato
  • When harvested, there is a very small possibility you will get a poisonous potato

Step 4: Pumpkins and Melons

Picture of Pumpkins and Melons



  • When you break a pumpkin, you get a full pumpkin. In order to plant more you need to use the crafting table to get seeds.
  • Needs to be planted on farmland, but does not need a farmland black for the pumpkin to appear on.
  • Unlike the previous plants mentioned, you plan the pumpkin and that is where the stem will grow, the pumpkin will appear in an adjacent square so you always need a space available next to it.
  • When you collect a pumpkin, the block below it will turn to dirt even if it had been plowed to be farmland.
  • After you harvest the pumpkin the stalk stays so you don''t have to replant it over and over again. It will continue to grow from that stalk. If you do break the stalk, you will get pumpkin seeds.

Facts about Pumpkins

  • They can be rare, but appear in many biomes.
  • Pumpkins always have a face. The direction of the face depends on where you are facing when you place it.
  • They can be made into a Jack o' Lantern by using the crafting table. Stack one pumpkin on top of one torch for 1 Jack o' Lantern.
  • Can be worn as helmet, but provides no protection and impairs your vision if doing 1st person perspective.
  • Pumpkins can be used to make Snow Golems and Iron Golems, the pumpkin has to be placed last.
  • Will emit light underwater.



  • Found in jungle, but you can also find them in chests in mines and get them by trading with villagers.
  • When you find a melon, break it to get melon pieces and then craft the melon pieces into seeds.
  • Just like the pumpkin, you plant the seed on a farmland block and this will create a stalk which will produce a melon on an adjacent square.
  • Just like the pumpkin, the stalk will stay after you harvest the melon and you can destroy the stalk to get seeds.

Facts about Melons

  • Each melon block should drop 3-7 melon slices.
  • Eating a melon doesn't provide much nourishment.
  • If you want a melon block it takes 9 melon pieces but once you break that block you have created you will only get the 3 - 7 slices as mentioned. Not really worth making unless you want it for decorative purposes.

Step 5: Cactus and Sugar Cane

Picture of Cactus and Sugar Cane


  • Find them on sand in the dessert
  • They will hurt if you touch it
  • Can destroy anything including mobs and items
  • Used for garbage disposal since it can destroy items
  • Cook in furnace to make green dye
  • It is easiest to harvest it by destroying the block below it or destroying the bottom block of the cactus
  • Just place it to start growing it

Sugar cane

  • Grows on dirt, sand or grass in any biome with water
  • Can only be planted/grow next to water - will not grow by ice
  • Most commonly grows three blocks high
  • If you break all but the bottom it will continue to grow
  • You can stack Sugar Can as high as you want
  • It is used to make sugar (1 used in a recipe for cake and pumpkin pie) or paper (3 in a row - to books bookshelves and maps)
  • Does not need farmland block to grow
  • Can be planted underwater and creates air pockets which you can breath in

Step 6: Mushroom Farming

Picture of Mushroom Farming


  • When mushroom farming, you can't have a light level greater than 12 or they won't grow - torches give off 14 so you don't want direct light on your mushrooms. Light does not matter if they are grown on a mycelium or podzol block
  • Do not require water to grow
  • Using bone meal on either a red or brown mushroom will cause a huge Mushroom
  • You can use a shovel on a huge mushroom to collect mushrooms

For planting them, I dug a stairs down and made sure light from the outside didn't spill in (though some light can get in). I dug about 4 squares up in the ceiling and placed a torch. I did this two times. I made the room only 2 blocks high with a dirt floor (you can't place mushrooms on stone, though I have seen them in the wild on stone).

Now wait. It takes quite a while for the mushrooms to spread.

Step 7: Cocoa Bean

Picture of Cocoa Bean

Cocoa Beans aren't very useful, but if you want cookies or brown dye, you will need them. (they also just look fun and can be used for decorating)

  • You can find cocoa pods in the jungle
  • Cocoa pods can only be grown on Jungle wood, but the wood doesn't have to be a tree (you can just stack blocks of jungle wood)
  • Just place the bean on a tree to plant it
  • Cocoa beans are used to make cookies and brown dye
  • The growing process goes from green > yellowish > redish orange

Step 8: Tree

Picture of Tree

Time to plant trees! Why plant trees? It's nice to be able to control your wood supply and control the type of wood you have access to.

Common Tree Characteristics

  • You can punch wood to harvest it or use an ax
  • You can punch the leaves as well and they are very easy to destroy, but you can also use shears to destroy leaves even faster
  • Wood is one of the most essential materials in the game
  • When you destroy all the wood of a tree, the leaves will slowly disappear and drop anything they may be holding (seeds or apples in some instances)
  • You will always get a block of wood when destroying wood, but you won't always get something from a block of leaves
  • Try to clear an area to plant your trees so they have room to grow


  • medium colored wood
  • grows pretty tall
  • very common
  • chance of getting apples from the leaves

Dark Oak

  • darkest color of wood
  • harder to find than regular oak
  • cannot just plant one sapling to grow, requires 4 saplings (2 by 2) to plant
  • chance of apples from leaves


  • dark colored wood
  • tall
  • can be planted with 4 saplings (2 by 2) to get a bigger tree


  • lightest color of wood
  • grows quickly
  • doesn't grow very tall, easy to harvest all


  • unique red color
  • only found in savanna
  • instead of growing straight up, as is normal for Minecraft trees, it grows in a strange growth formation (can grow diagonally with blocks not necessarily right next to each other


  • medium colored wood
  • grow enormous (makes it very difficult to harvest the whole tree), I have also seen them grow very small like bushes (those cover the ground in the jungle)
  • only found in jungles
  • can grow cocoa beans on them
  • can be grown with 4 saplings (2 by 2)
  • vines can grow on them and you can climb up them

Step 9: Bonus: Garden Shed

Picture of Bonus: Garden Shed

I have been playing my Survival game for a while and I have accumulated so much stuff. I have about 5 double chests with various supplies separated into them. After gathering some Acacia wood, I decided to make a shed (because I like the red wood).

In my shed I kept seeds (not including things that can be eaten including pumpkins and melons), plants, natural materials (snowballs, lily pads, and grass), and tools used for farming and animals including hoes, shears and axes. The interior dimensions were 4 by 3 by (so the blocks were placed in a 6 by 5 rectangle to create the walls. The basic height is 3 blocks high not including the half spaces that were left from the slab roof.

Supplies I used:

  • Acacia planks (walls and table)
  • Acacia wood slabs (roof and overhang)
  • Birch planks (floor)
  • Wooden Door
  • Glass panes
  • Double Chest
  • Crafting Block
  • Clay (smelted and then made into a pot)
  • Flowers (decoration)
  • Cobblestone (path to front door of home)

Step 10: More Minecraft

Picture of More Minecraft


rknutson (author)2017-08-13

9 by 9 with 1 block of water in the middle is more efficient for a farm.

Yep! I mention that in step 1. I like to use more water to make my farm look nicer :)

Hudsonwkortus (author)2016-11-18

OOOh! I didn't use the hoe! Thanks sooooo! Much!!????

Hudsonwkortus (author)2016-11-18

I can't get the seeds to go in the dirt! I'm in survival I even tried it with water

Did you use the hoe on the dirt to change it to farmland first? I'm not sure what else would prevent it from working.

kevanchristian (author)2016-10-09


ttylxox999 (author)2016-10-02

can someone do how to pumpkin farm please?

I need help in my survival world because I don't kill animals

I am a vegetarian and i don't think its cool to eat meat or kill animals in general even in minecraft.

Step 4 above should have everything you need for pumpkin farming. You just need a hoe to create farmland which is normal for all plants, then make sure you leave an empty block next to wherever you plant the pumpkin because the pumpkin grows a space over and not on the space you plant on.

Austydude (author)2014-09-08

Ummm how do you get the melons in survival!?!?

harold2000 (author)Austydude2016-04-24

they spawn in jungles

It should be the same in survival and creative.

DaveyCakes03 (author)2016-02-19

Sorry, there is an easier way to make a farm that is much bigger and less expensive. Long story short, you get the area you want a farm and you fill a 1x1 hole with water and you can use the Hoe to farm within 8 blocks/spaces of that 1x1 hole of water. At the

Yeah, using just 1 block of water for a 9x9 square is the best use of space. I use more water for aesthetic purposes :)

Minecraft_Boss (author)2015-03-28

this is cool thx please Chek out my page

Austydude (author)2014-09-10

I am putting herobrine survival He Is Real!

Austydude (author)2014-09-08

NOTE: I used Mineshafter to get my Minecraft penolopy bulnick it's allows me to install mods and updates too

Mr_Altitude (author)2014-06-19

I love your minecraft tutorials. Keep up the good work!

Just one question. Where are carrots and potatoes generally found?

Thanks :)

Carrots and Potatoes can be found in Village gardens and they can be dropped by Zombies, but it's rare.

ASL1014 (author)2014-06-16

Yes I mean the image note

Penolopy Bulnick (author)ASL10142014-06-16

To create an image note, you just click on the image you want the note on while looking at the photo while editing your Instructable.

Like in that image, you can either click on the image to add an image note, or click that box that says add note.

ASL1014 (author)2014-06-15

In picture 14 how do you get the square with info on it

Penolopy Bulnick (author)ASL10142014-06-15

Can you direct me to which picture on which step you are referring to? And when you say info do you mean the image note?

knexsuperbuilderfreak (author)2014-05-24

Have you ever looked into some more automatic farming? Would add a nice touch to this ible.

SonicLoverSeth (author)2014-04-24

Cool! Can you make a derivative instructable for the pocket edition?

yeah pls make an instructable for pe!halph of this stuff is not useful for pe and also do we have emeralds in pe??thanks!

I actually have yet to play the pocket edition, but if I get it, I will be sure to do that :)

ak03 (author)2014-04-30

How do you get cocoa beans for the cookies?

Penolopy Bulnick (author)ak032014-05-06

You find them in the Jungle biomes. When you destroy a cocoa pod you get cocoa beans.

brechtooms (author)2014-05-05

wearing a pumpkin also prevents endermen from agroing when you look at them

DreamingSheep (author)2014-04-29

I haven't read the entire ibble, but not many people know this.. If you plant your crops in single lines they will grow faster than in a block.

If you look at the images I've attached, the one with just what in it (horizontal lines), you can see how much more mature the back two rows are, this is because there's a gap between the two rows, thus making them two 1x9 rows, instead of a single 2x9 row. for the record, the 2x9 was planted first.

The game code basically checks along the X axis for the same crop type, if it see it, it then checks the Z axis. If it does not find the same crop on both axis, the crop grows faster (it could be the opposite way, check Z first, if it finds the same it slows down, I can't remember).

How to use this to your benefit, grow your crops next to each other in single lines as the game code only checks for the same crop, so a carrot next to a potato does not affect the growth rate.

Also, if you're just starting your farm and trying to farm seeds, plant in single rows, not a large block like most people do.

hermitinahole (author)2014-04-27

You can also have your waterblocks 1 block underneath your plants and they'll still grow.

Yes, but no. Having water below the farm will not hydrate the dirt, so while plants will grow, the tiled dirt may change back to normal dirt and crops won't grow as quickly. It acts the same as having no water nearby.

You can however place a water block 1 higher than your farm and it will still hydrate as normal.

That's sweet! I hate walking in the water all the time to get the wheat :P

Dartag (author)Penolopy Bulnick2014-04-28

You can place carpet on top of water and never have to worry about a) walking through water to get to different parts of your field or 2) harvested items dropping in the water. You can't just lay it right on top (the carpet would place at the bottom of the water and break immediately into a dropped item), but there are methods by which you can do it...there are good Youtube vids on it.

nick_hunter (author)2014-04-27

T stone walls are the best solution for spiders... 2 blocks high, with a 3rd row of 3 blocks width... torches every 5 blocks and forget any mobs.... for entering don't use doors... you can make a stone stair outside with a 1 block gap before T wall so you can only enter by jumping to the stone wall... no mob can do this.

So a fence on top of 3 blocks is a good height? Thanks for the tips, I haven't gotten to fortefing my area yet :) Still working my way along!

no no... no fence, only stone walls


Thundermoon99 (author)2014-04-27

It's also a little known fact that in the Minecraft code it says that crops will go faster when it's not near crops of the same, for example 1 row wheat then 1 row potatoes.

Thanks for the tip! Haven't read about that yet. Where do you find your tips? I spend most of my time on the Minecraft Wiki :)

I watch Docm77 with the Zipcrowd server and Xsumavoid :)

Smaj (author)2014-04-27

You'll find that a single tile of water can hydrate farmland up to four blocks away - and for maximum efficiency melons/pumpkins should be grown on the outside edge.

Penolopy Bulnick (author)Smaj2014-04-27

Yep! I pointed that out in Step 1 of my Instructable; I threw an image in there too in case people weren't sure what I was talking about! And it was mentioned by ClockworkPheonix and ghostbust555 in the comments below :)

njh51 (author)2014-04-27

One big thing that I use wheat for is to breed sheep and cows (mostly sheep, as the wool is most useful and you don't have to kill the sheep to get it!)

Biggest tip you missed -- if you are just starting a game, dropped saplings make great fuel to make extra torches until you find coal. You still need the wood for charcoal, but you don't have to use it for the fuel. It takes more saplings to burn, but if you have a lot of trees, you should be able to gather enough saplings to get some extra torches until you find that great coal vein. :)

Penolopy Bulnick (author)njh512014-04-27

I use it to breed the sheep and cows too, I have collected so much wool I'm not sure what to do with it! They sure regrow it fairly fast. I have 4 sheep right now I keep on my little farm.

I have not tried burning saplings yet, but it seems like it might be better to burn the wood or the planks since the saplings only have a 5 second burn time and wood and planks burn for 15 seconds (so technically planks would be best to burn out of those two since you get the 4 planks from the 1 block of wood). Either way, thanks for the tip on the saplings, I wasn't aware you could burn them too!

I talked about making charcoal (for torches and fuel) in my How to Survive your First Day of Minecraft and was trying to not repeat myself too much here :)

Thundermoon99 (author)2014-04-27

You can also get over the fence by placing a carpet on top of it. Since the carpet is on the block above the fence mobs will still see it as 1.5 blocks high but you will still be able to jump on top of the carpet to get to the other side.

Thanks for the tip :) Haven't gotten into carpets yet.

viredx (author)2014-04-27

Try cobblestone fences instead of wood fences, more resource friendly. Gates still attach the right way, You can also farm cocoa beans if you bring jungle wood back too, think it should be covered too.

Penolopy Bulnick (author)viredx2014-04-27

Okay, if I got this right:

1 block of wood wood = 4 planks.

2 planks = 4 sticks, meaning 1/2 block of wood = 4 sticks and 1/4 block of wood = 2 sticks

6 sticks = 2 fences, meaning 3/4 of a piece of wood = 2 fences (since that would be the 1/2 a block plus the 1/4 a block as mentioned above) and since you get two fences from that each fence is equal to .375 pieces of wood. So for a wood fence it takes .375 of a base resource, wood, to get a fence piece, and for a stone fence it takes one whole block of stone. So, technically, isn’t it more resource friendly to make a wood fence instead of a stone fence, also taking into consideration you do not need a tool to collect wood but you need more resources to make a pickax which is required to collect stone :)

Penolopy Bulnick (author)viredx2014-04-27

Thanks for the tip on the cobblestone fences, and I did talk about cocoa bean farming on jungle wood :) Check out step 7.

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