The basis of food production for many a Minecraft player, the field has changed slightly since vanilla. While the basic concepts are still applied in practice, there are few things that have been expanded on to encourage proper agricultural practices.
Unlike in vanilla Minecraft, you can no long till soil that is not nearby water: doing so will only turn the grass into dirt, but not into farmland. This can be useful for making dirt paths, but if you want to farm you'll need a source of water. The farming radius is 4 blocks from water, just for reference. If you want to be able to grow crops year-round, place Botanic Glass up to 7 blocks above your farmland, acting like a greenhouse, even in the winter months.
Bone meal does not work as expected in this world, but there are other ways to have enriched soil:
While bone meal could have provided an instant boost to your crops, adding mulch will increase the rate of growth for a single block of farmland. This effect applies to crops out of season: for example, growing mustard seeds on mulched soil will make them grow in the spring when their ideal time is summer/autumn. In fact, mulched soil will allow your crops to grow through the winter! This mulch will only last for one or two harvests, but the boost it provides to your crops will leave you with a full larder.
To make mulch, you'll first need a composting bin. From there, you toss in (a lot of) your unwanted biological matter (rotten flesh, seeds, etc.). Once you have your materials inside, you let it condense into mulch over time. It should be noted that the bin requires "moisture" to work - this can be provided by rain over time or directly using water bottles/buckets. The moisture will drop as it's composting, so be sure to check and add water when necessary. To retrieve the mulch when the composting process is finished, right-click on the composting bin with a shovel - right-clicking with anything else will retrieve the last item you put in it (if it hasn't already turned to mulch).
If you decide to be heartless and kill a forest sprite, they may drop some Wonder-Sap, which is often used for converting logs. However, combining the sap with dirt makes a special soil that is placed as farmland (no tilling required) and cannot be trampled. To top it off, no water is needed for this farmland to sustain your crops to full effect!
Harvesting crops has never been easier! Instead of breaking the crop, collecting the product and its seeds, and then replanting it, one can simply right-click crops to gain the fruits of labor while keeping the soil planted, saving you time and inventory space.
- As of 3.1.1a, Mulch cannot be applied to Ever-Fertile Soil.
- In versions before 3.1.0, when Mulch was applied to farmland, it would last for several seasons before needing to be reapplied, making it much more effective as fertilizer.