This will be a short guide to get you farming and really earning your food in the zombie apocalypse. Of the many survival mechanics in Project Zomboid hunger and thirst are probably the two hardest to manage. Sure injury might be a big one, but you can just stay out of the way most of the time. One of the best ways to maintain your food source is by farming. We will teach you the basics of farming and show you how to do it in Project Zomboid.
Even though the main goal is to survive, you can plant and grow your own food as you would in a game like Stardew Valley. Along with growing food in Project Zomboid, Fishing is another great source of sustainable food.
What Do I Need to Farm?
To get started out in farming, the only thing you will actually need is seeds to grow some produce. You can find seeds in many different container types in Project Zomboid. One of the best places to find seeds is in the sheds of the many residential buildings scattered around the map. If you are in town, a good place to look is warehouses as the large storage crates can be a good source of many different types of seeds.
Another great item to have is something that can be used as a plowing tool. This could be a hoe, a larger two-handed garden fork or even a simple trowel. Technically you could dig a furrow to plant seeds with your hands, but this is more time consuming, dirty, exhausting and can even lead to injury. Your best bet is to find some kind of farming tool if you want to plant a big veggie patch.
You will also need access to a water source in Project Zomboid for all of your farming endeavors. As in real life, the crops in Project Zomboid will require water to grow and thrive. Keeping your plants well fed will make sure that you will have plenty of crops to eat. One of the biggest issues of farming in Project Zomboid is finding enough water to keep them alive but hopefully after this guide you will become a farming master.
How to get Started Farming
To begin your farming adventure in Project Zomboid you will need a little bit of setup. You cannot just throw seeds at the ground and hope food will come out!
To start a farming area, find a area with grass or dirt. You can even create your own dirt areas by shoveling up some dirt and placing it somewhere which could even be the rooftop of your base. Once you have found a nice area to start a veggie patch, right-click the area and select either ‘Dig Furrow with Hands’ if you don’t have a digging tool or ‘Dig Furrow’ if you do.
Once you have selected the option your cursor will turn into a little dug up dirt image. You can then select where on the grass your character will dig a furrow to plant seeds. Doing this will make your character easily exhausted so keep an eye on your energy levels when doing so.
Once you have found the spots that you wanted to plant some produce get out of this menu by either left-clicking or by pressing the Esc key.
Now if you try to plant seeds on the furrowed areas you may notice that all of the options for seeds are red. Even if you have a packet of seeds in your inventory you will have to take them out of the packet first. Go into your inventory, find the appropriate seeds that you would like to plant in the ground and right-click on them. You can then select the option to open the pack of seeds into your inventory. You will see the seeds now loosely in your item inventory.
Then, once you have the seeds, you will be able to plant them! Remember that to plant whichever seeds you wanted, you will first have to open up the packet and get the single seed items into your inventory first. Even if you just opened the strawberry seeds, if you want to plant radishes you will have to open up each individual packet to obtain the seeds from inside.
After you have opened the seeds get out of the inventory screen by clicking out of it, or by pressing the ‘I’ key by default. You can now right-click on the farmed area to get to the interaction menu for it. Select the option ‘Sow Seed’ and another menu should open which shows every seed type that can be planted in this area. Different plants will have different statistics but we can go over that later.
Once you find the plant that you want to grow, scroll down to it’s name and select it. You character will automatically plant the appropriate seed in the furrow that you have selected. Congratulations, you have planted your first crop in Project Zomboid and are on your way to becoming a master farmer.
Learning About Your Plants
Simply putting your seeds into the Earth isn’t the end of farming in Project Zomboid. Along with taking a lot of time to grow food, it also takes a lot of effort to grow plants. Having the seeds planted is only the beginning of your farming journey. You will now have to check on the crops and water them from time to time.
If you want to see some more detailed information about your chosen plant you can right-click on the plant and select the option that reads ‘info’. This will give you an insight into the plant including telling you exactly what is planted there and whether or not it needs to be watered.
To begin with you will only be able to see basic information about a crop, such as whether it needs to be watered and how healthy the plant is. Once you start to get your farming skill level up you will be able to see key indicators on the crops and more information will be revealed to you through the information sheet such as the growing phase of the plant. You can also see whether or not the crop is fertilized from the information area.
Taking Care of Your Crops
To keep the crops healthy you will need to take care of them. Plants and crops in Project Zomboid are prone to some of the dangers that the character also faces. The plants will get thirsty and need to be watered from time to time. The plants can be watered naturally from the rain but if it doesn’t rain to often in game you will have to do most of the watering yourself. As water is hard to come by in Project Zomboid you might feel bad using it on farming, but rest-assured it will be worth it.
One of the best ways to gain water that can be used on plants is just to simply put buckets on the ground. You may, from time to time, come across these plastic buckets and not know what to do with them. If you plant to farm, hoard buckets as they can be used to catch rainwater! Take the buckets outside and drag them onto the ground The next time it rains your will have a bunch of buckets filled with water for your plants to drink.
You will see that when you look at the bucket of water it is tainted and not suitable for drinking. If you do plan to drink the water, make sure you boil it over a fire! We, however will not be drinking this water.
Tainted water can be used to feed plants and doesn’t require any special treatment. You can also collect water from the rivers and lakes on the map.
once you have a full bucket of water, pick it up and move towards your farm area. You can now right click on the plants and choose the ‘Water’ option. This will reveal another menu that will tell ask how many unit of water you would like to put onto the plant.
Different plant types require a different amounts of water, so experiment with small amounts of water first and then check the ‘info’ tab of your plants to avoid using too much water anywhere. This is a easy way to keep those plants fed. Make sure you check the plants regularly and keep them well fed otherwise they will die.
That was a short guide on how to farm in Project Zomboid. I hope this helped keep you alive for just a little while longer at least. Farming can be a great, sustainable source of food in Project Zomboid. Fruits and vegetables are a very healthy source of food that won’t make your survivor to over, or underweight. Vegetables can also be combined and mixed with other ingredients within the Cooking aspect of the Crafting menu as well. So you can serve up some delicious meal to your friends in Project Zomboid.