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Farming in ARK is much more important then you may first believe, especially if you want things like taming to be done faster. In this guide, you will be taught about the two major types of farms. Some parts of farming does not directly reflect the topic, these outliers with their unique mechanics will be elaborated at the end of each section.

Crop Farming[edit | edit source]

Crop farming is defined as, quite literally, the farming of crops. These crops can be simple, like Berries, or they can be more advanced, like the conveniently named Crops, or as they are more commonly known, Vegetables. A important thing to note however, is that you should only invest resources into a farm when you able to afford defending yourself. In other words, try not to build a farm until you have upgraded your base to at least Stone. If you prefer efficiency over the privacy and safety of the farm, it may be wise to build the farm on a foundation not connected to your main base.

Preparation[edit | edit source]

Unlike most games, Ark requires the player to plant their crops in Crop Plots, on top of this requirement, the plants will need to be seeded, watered, and fertilized; requiring Seeds, Water, and Fertilizer respectively. To elaborate, Fertilizer can be 'any' type of Feces, as well as the Snow Owl Pellet

The process in which you start the garden is actually up to the player; there is no specific order in terms of what you supply, only that all of the requirements must be met in the end. In Ark, you can occasionally find seeds whenever you gather Berries, however they are much more uncommon then the berries themselves. When you do obtain some seeds, you can plant them in the crop plots that you placed, you can then fertilize them. Don't forget to water them, as they are plants after all. If you take care of your crops, they can take care of you; more specifically, they can provide you with food which can feed not only you, but also your tames -- right in the safety of your own base. It is ok to have an excess of berries, as they can be used in a 'super food' known as Kibble. Kibble is incredibly useful in that it helps shorten the long and sometimes tedious process of Taming. Of course, you can grow more then berries, in fact, you can grow other things like the previously mentioned Crops as well.

Gathering Resources[edit | edit source]

When you started a new game in Ark and starting rummaging through Berry Bushes to survive, you probably found some Seeds occasionally mixed in with the Berries and Fiber you collected. It is not recommended to search for seeds by hand though, use a tame that is relatively easy to tame, like a Trike or Parasaur, though there is nothing stopping you from using a Bronto if you already have one. There are some places that you can also easily obtain Crops as well.

  • On Ragnarok Ragnarok Icon.png however, the Rockarrots and Savoroots grow throughout the Highlands. In the ruins of a farm near the lighthouse, there is a small area featuring both of the said crops; it is implied that the former survivors that lived there originally had grown and tended the crops.
  • Primitive Plus Icon.png Just like normal seeds, the Primitive Plus seeds are found in the same manner. However on Ragnorok, Grapes Primitive Plus Icon.png can be found from grapevines growing in the vineyard ruins on an island near Green Obelisk.

The Crop Plot[edit | edit source]

There are several different sizes of crops plots, each growing a wider variety of plants.

Comparison of different crop plots

To plant a seed in an empty plot, open the plot's Inventory screen, and place the desired item from your inventory into the plot's storage. The seed will be consumed in the process -provided that water and fertilizer is available- and will put your plot into the "Seeded" growth stage.

Different Crop Plots

Crop Plot Supported Seeds
Small Crop Plot.png
Small Crop Plot
Amarberry Seed, Azulberry Seed, Mejoberry Seed, Narcoberry Seed, Stimberry Seed, Tintoberry Seed
Medium Crop Plot.png
Medium Crop Plot
All of the above, as well as:

Citronal Seed, Longrass Seed, Rockarrot Seed, Savoroot Seed

On Primitive Plus

Barley Seed, Cabbage Seed, Camellia (Tea) Seed, Cashew Tree, Coffee Seed, Grape Seed, Rice Seed, Sorghum Seed, Soybean Seed, Spinach Seed, Sugarcane Seed, Tobacco Seed, Tomato Seed, Wheat Seed

Note that the Square and Round beds from Mobile are considered Medium Crop Plots

Large Crop Plot.png
Large Crop Plot
All of the above, as well as:

Plant Species X Seed, Plant Species Y Seed, Plant Species Z Seed

Maintenance[edit | edit source]

There is nothing stopping you from manually inserting Feces and Water, though this process can be made must less tedious. This section will go over the two different needs of plants and how to properly maintain them.

Fertilizer[edit | edit source]

As stated before, Fertilizer is not limited to the Actual Fertilizer Item, rather it includes any type of organic waste. A table showing all of the different types is listed later on in this section.

Compost Bin
The most straightforward method of creating fertilizer is by using a Compost Bin to compost the feces you collect. In order to compost the feces you have, you must also insert Thatch. Different types of feces require different amounts of thatch, as well as outputting different amounts of fertilizer.

The problem with the compost bin is that it takes a long time to compost the materials. However, the compost bin is not the only way of creating fertilizer, nor is it the best.

Dung Beetle
The Dung Beetle can be a very useful creature when it comes to the production of fertilizer. All you have to do is simply set them on wander and put the feces in their inventory. After ~15 minutes, it will convert some of the feces in it's inventory into fertilizer and small amounts of Oil. Larger Feces will create more fertilizer (and oil), but be sure to level their weight so that they can carry more, and therefore compost, more feces at a time.


While a Toilet may seem childish, it is actually a fully functional structure that can net you some quick fertilizer. To use it, simply sit down on the toilet and force your character to defecate. Afterwards, flush and you will be given a small amount of Fertilizer from the Toilet's Inventory. However, the process of turning the feces into fertilizer can only be done when the Toilet is connected to a water filled Irrigation Pipe.

Fertilizer type Fertilizer units Fertilizes for Fertilizes full* plant for
Human Feces 1,000 10m 3h 5m
Small Animal Feces 3,500 35m 10h 48m
Medium Animal Feces 7,500 1h 15m 23h 8m
Unicorn Residue Logo Mobile.svg 7,500 1h 15m 23h 8m
Large Animal Feces 15,000 2h 30m 1d 22h 15m
Massive Animal Feces 35,000 5h 50m 4d 11h 55m
Snow Owl Pellet Extinction Icon.png 50,000 8h 20m 6d 10h 10m
Fertilizer 54,000 9h 6d 22h 30m
Bonemeal Fertilizer Primitive Plus Icon.png 90,000 15h 11d 13h 30m

* When a plant has its maximum of fruits, it needs less fertilizer. As the fruits spoil after some time, leaving the plant in a non-full state for some time, these numbers are rather theoretical maximums.

Once growing, your crop will slowly consume the first provided piece of compost, draining its value by one point per second (shown by a brown bar under the item). You can view your crop's total 'Fertilizer' value at anytime by viewing the plot's inventory. When the fertilizer reaches 0, the crop will slowly degrade and eventually vanish (the crops will stay harvest-able, so long as they do not spoil). A growing or fruit-producing plant needs approximately 100 units of fertilizer per minute (~1.67/s). Once the plant contains a certain threshold of produce (for berries the limit is 300, other plants can hold up to 150 fruits), the consumption is lowered to approximately 4.8/min (~0.081/s). As a rule of thumb, you should leave each of your plants with 144,000 fertilizer (a bit less than 3 Fertilizer), to keep it fertilized for 24 hours.

Water[edit | edit source]

Irrigation[edit | edit source]

Irrigation will save time of having to continuously fill water containers and waiting for the next rain storm to happen. Depending if the gameplay mode the player is PvE or PvP, establishing a good network especially hidden is very important in PvP; so that your base may avoid being discovered by enemies. This section will cover the basics and advancements of building a good water system.

Pipes[edit | edit source]

To fill by irrigation, the player will need to have a working Tap near the plot. The Tap will only be considered working if properly connected to an Intake Pipe, or a Water Reservoir with water already inside, if pipes are connected to a water source correctly they will change in color from the normal stone/metal color to blue. This will indicate that water is flowing through the pipe. You will know the Tap is working correctly when your plot's HUD says "Irrigated" in the Water stats.

To fill by rain or snow, the crop box must have unobstructed access to the sky or have a water tap connected to a Water Reservoir that is outside where rain water can be collected. Although someplaces, especially in The Center The Center Icon.png that rains often; relying solely on rain or snow to provide water is unreliable and not advised.

Small Plots can hold a maximum of 200 units of Water. Medium Plots can hold 400 units. Large Plots can hold 600 units.

Hidden Pipes[edit | edit source]

One easy way of hide pipes is to position a Stone Irrigation Pipe - Vertical by using any preferred structure, in this example a Stone Pillar. Position the pipe how low you want it. Then break the floor foundation and place as many Stone Irrigation Pipe - Intersections as needed for future connections (remember to replace the Stone Foundations as you go to the next section).

Advance Pipe Concealment

You can hide irrigation pipes by clipping them onto the ground/slope. It requires:

First place the Stone Irrigation Pipe - Vertical, then clip a Stone Irrigation Pipe - Inclined downward (it will most likely look halfway in the ground). Go into the crawling position with another Stone Irrigation Pipe - Inclined look straight down to the expected end of the Vertical Pipe, and switch to Oribit Camera. You should be able to look under the ground. There you try to adjust your character to position the pipe. Once you have the 2nd Inclined Pipe placed completely under the ground, then destroy the pipes sticking out of the ground. When you use the Stone Irrigation Pipe - Flexible, it will barely show in the ground. You may have to do this several times as needed to completely hide your pipe connections.

Growth/Harvesting[edit | edit source]

Stimberry growth stages

As your crop develops, it will enter different stages of growth. The approximate time your plant takes to grow is dependent on the availability of water and compost. Anytime one or the other is missing, the growth rate grinds to a halt.

Crops grow slowly taking quite a few day/night cycles before they are harvest-able

  1. Seeded (0-1 Minutes)
  2. Seedling (1 Minute - ~7 In-Game Days; sometimes even a real-life day)
  3. Midling (~5 In-Game Days)
  4. Growthling (~1 to 2 In-Game Day to get to Fruitling)
  5. Fruitling (Final Stage)

When permanently fertilized, it takes about 1 real-life day to grow from Seeded to Fruitling. If the crop plot is enclosed by Greenhouse structures, crops grow significantly faster than usual.

Once your crop enters the "Fruitling" stage, your crop will begin to yield food, and occasionally new seeds. To harvest, remove the crops from the plot's Inventory screen. As with all containers, overfull plots will need to have items removed down to less than the maximum inventory size before new items can be added.

Gardening (Mobile)[edit | edit source]

This section is currently under construction.

Greenhouse[edit | edit source]

A greenhouse

Greenhouses give special bonuses to farming that can be seen on a crop box's HUD in dark green. The Greenhouse Effect improves crop growth speed and reduces the amount of fertilizer used. The maximum of the Greenhouse Effect is 300%.

Plant Species X, Y and Z

Plant Species are the "territorial plants", mentioned before. However, the seeds are found separately depending on the Ark maps:

Also referred to as 'Spitter Plant'. Is known for it's aggressive reaction to spit poisonous projectiles at any creature that comes near it's territory. However does not harm it's owner or anything associated with their tribe nor ownership.

While it doesn't grow in the wilderness, once the seed is planted and grown by the Survivor it will appear with a pinkish conical shape with small tentacle stems. It produces a fruit that has tentacles attached. If the player buries the fruit it will react as a trap toward enemies. Once the enemy steps on it, the tentacles will whip out of the ground to grab and constrict the trespasser tightly for a certain amount of time before dying.

    • The seeds are only found in the purple flower foliage that grows on the ground in Scorched Earth Scorched Earth Icon.png and Ragnarok Ragnarok Icon.png. You can confirm that is the plant, if you gain Silk with the other resources. However the seed is rare and has a low chance of being harvested.
  • Plant Species Z Aberration Icon.png
    • Is only found in the wilderness of the Aberration Aberration Icon.png Ark and can only be grown there.

Farm Animals[edit | edit source]

During the time in Ark, most Survivors learned that coexistence has benefits. Domesticating or Taming dinos helps in many ways: carrying heavy loads of resources like wood or metal, gathering food, protection from other dangerous creatures. Each creature can be effectively utilized and not every one of them needs to be a fighter or heavy lifter.

Its recommended after taming these creatures is to place them in a confined area either fenced off or a structure that acts like a barn or stables to protect them from wandering away or being attacked.

Equus[edit | edit source]

The Equus is a horse in Ark and with a Equus Saddle and Lasso a player riding the Equus can use the Lasso to catch and pull a small or medium size creature quickly away to be fed and tamed. Equus can be good for rescuing another player who may have fallen into a deep pit. They are easy to tame by riding on their backs or passively with Rockarrots. As well the saddle offers a toolkit that works like a mobile Mortar and Pestle, with the addition of the lasso engram.

Parasaur[edit | edit source]

Parasaurs are among other creatures the player will most likely encounter early in the game. Known for their skittish nature of running from anything that they consider dangerous. Their cowardly nature has good reasons to explain this spontaneous behavior, it is because they have an ability to sense dangerous creatures from a distance. The Survivor can implement this instinct by setting the tame parasaur into a Turret-mode to see where the nearby danger or intruder is. The parasaur will signal its owner who may then prepare their defenses.

Eggs, Meat and Fertilizer[edit | edit source]

Dodo and the Terror Bird

  • Dodos and Terror Birds are the chickens of Ark. Both lay eggs, are easy to breed and has good resources including: Meat or in Primitive Plus Fresh Poultry Primitive Plus Icon.png, and Feathers Primitive Plus Icon.png. The only true problem lies in taming the Terror Bird. The Dodo can easily be persuaded with Berries but the Terror Bird can kill you which makes them harder to tame.
  • If there were ever foxes in Ark, the Oviraptor would come as close to the personality of one. Not only can it assist the Survivor with stealing eggs from other dinos, it can help encourage local tame dinos to lay eggs more often. Let it roam near a Dodo pen and the dodos will be encouraged by their new neighbor to lay eggs more often.
  • Phiomias are beneficial for their resources such as: Hide, Meat or in Primitive+ Fresh Bacon Primitive Plus Icon.png and since it poops often and larger amounts than the dodo, it's feces are helpful for the gardens.

Sheep[edit | edit source]

The sheep, Ovis are picky eaters and prefers Sweet Vegetable Cake or Lettuce Primitive Plus Icon.png over anything else, when it comes to taming. The taming expense is worth it's weight in Wool and Raw Mutton. By using Scissors, the farmer can cut wool from the Ovis and use it as a resource to make Fur Armor in the Smithy, as well gain mutton when harvesting the corpse with a Pick.

Apiary[edit | edit source]

Raising Bees is profitable. If the Survivor is confident enough, they can attempt to tame a Giant Queen Bee and transport her Bee Hive back to their farm. As long as the player stores Rare Flowers in the Bee Hive, the honey bees will continue to produce:

and in Primitive Plus mode

Honey has several uses. It can be used to tame:

By throwing honey off the Wooden Raft during the attack, it can calm the great Leedsichthys of the sea. It can be used for Fish Bait or an ingredient in recipes like the Sweet Vegetable Cake and custom recipes. In anycase the Giant Bee Honey is a sweet snack for survivors.

Rotten Meat, Vultures and Bugs[edit | edit source]


It doesn't take long to have Feeding Troughs full of Spoiled Meat. If the Survivor doesn't need the extra resource to craft Narcotics, then domesticating Vultures can help keep the Feeding Troughs clean from wasted meat. When it comes to farming, the Vulture doesn't have many uses other than it's Eggs and it's ability that causes Raw Meat to spoil quickly within it's inventory.

Bugs[edit | edit source]

Bugs are also useful to keep Feeding Troughs clean from spoiled meat, however a couple of them have great fundamental abilities when it comes to a survivor's farm life.

Dung Beetle

The Dung Beetle is more resourceful than any of them. As long as the player leaves them to wander in a safe place they can convert Feces (in their inventory) into Fertilizer and Oil.


If brave enough the survivor can attempt to tame this large, extremely aggressive creature; the Mantis. The Mantis has the capability to hold tools and weapons. Give it a good Metal Pick, that's then influenced by the Mantis' Melee Damage and it can mine large amounts of resources from rocks, including metal. Both resourceful and deadly, this is an insect that any farmer would want protecting their gardens.

Notes[edit | edit source]

Video Guide[edit | edit source]

A full video guide to farming in under 5 minutes.