A veteran "Rust" degenerate with 4.5k hours, a rock, and a dream.
Growing Plants in Rust
Growing crops in Rust can be incredibly valuable, even if your goal is simply to feed yourself. The ability to to provide you or your group with food, cloth from hemp, or teas from berries can be incredibly impactful. However, outdoor growing is unreasonably risky as people can steal your crops if you don't have them compounded, so most folks need to use a base designed for growing. This requires basic electricity and water skills.
Essentials for Growing
While it's possible to just throw seeds into the ground and have them grow, it is the slowest and riskiest method. Instead I'll cover what is necessary to grow entirely indoors in order to keep your plants safe from others and grow them as efficiently as possible. However, this means you'll need to know the basics of electricity and water. For starters, let's cover the minimum requirements for growing in a small indoor space on or next to fresh water. This won't cover many details, but it's enough to get going. You'll need:
- Wire tool
- Hose tool
- Solar panel
- Small battery (Medium is better)
- 2 ceiling lights
- 2 sprinklers
- 1 water pump
- 6 large planters
To get the farm running, follow these steps:
- Build a base that features an empty 2x3 space, or add this to an existing base. Ideally with a foundation left out with deep enough water to place a water pump in.
- Place 6 large planters in a 2x3 space (you can do this with less and use fewer lights if you prefer).
- Place a ceiling light above both points where 4 planters touch corners.
- Place 2 sprinklers close together directly in the center point of all the planters.
- Place a water pump in the water you ideally have access to from inside your base, but if you didn't keep a spot of open water or the water isn't deep enough bring it outside and place it in deep water.
- Place your battery.
- Place the solar panel on your roof, likely facing north but whichever direction is the best, and then connect it to your battery using the wire tool.
- Using the wire tool, connect your battery output to your ceiling light.
- Connect your ceiling lights together through the passthrough node.
- Connect your 2nd ceiling light to the water pump through its passthrough node.
- Using the hose tool, connect your water pump to the sprinkler.
- Connect your sprinklers together through the passthrough node.
As quickly as that, you have a functioning farm! However, it's worth noting that a single solar panel and a small battery may struggle somewhat with the power needs of this circuit depending on what season your Rust wipe is in, but your plants won't die. You may find it more effective to run 2 floors of 6 planters with 3 solar panels using a root combiner to put the power into a medium battery. You'll then also need a branch to split power on it's way out to the pumps as they don't have passthrough nodes.
Furthermore, if you plan to do this in saltwater, you'll need a powered water purifier, 5 more power, and a fluid combiner to put all your pumps into the water purifier, and then from there into your sprinklers. Be sure to place your powered water purifier on the highest floor or you'll need a fluid switch and pump to make the flower go upwards.
Below I'll include a video of a simple farm base to get you started if the description above isn't enough.
Simple Farm Base Build Video
Grow Base Screenshots
Different Types of Crops
You can grow a handful of different of different types of crops, each filling their own use effectively spread across 3 different categories.
- Potatoes: High quantity per plant, high calories, low hydration. Great for feeding a group, but you'll need water for people to drink.
- Corn: Decent quantity per plant, decent calories, decent hydration. Overall average, but it doesn't require extra water.
- Pumpkins: High calories, hydration, and healing. The best food to use. However, low quantity per plant and thus takes more effort to feed the same amount.
Growing hemp can output quite a bit of cloth. Most commonly this is done to provide for a group's healing as syringes take a bit of cloth to craft. This is especially relevant for groups in the snow or desert where hemp pickups cannot be found. It can also be traded in at Bandit Camp for scrap, though there is a timer on how much you can trade in.
Crafting teas from growing berries can dramatically impact the progression of a group. There are multiple teas that can be crafted including:
- Healing teas, crafted from red berries.
- Max health teas, increasing the maximum health you can have for a short while, crafted from yellow and red berries.
- Ore teas, increasing the yield from mining resource nodes, crafted from yellow and blue berries.
- Wood teas, increasing the yield from chopping down trees, crafted from red and blue berries.
- Scrap teas, increasing the scrap yield from barrels, crafted from white berries. Generally not worth it.
- Anti-rad teas, offering resistance to radiation, crafted from green berries. Generally not worth it.
Each category has their own uses, and it's not uncommon for groups to grow all types of crops. In fact, it's normal for a group to have a base dedicated to crossbreeding "God clones" and growing plants.
Nearly anyone can benefit from learning how to grow crops in Rust. Groups chew through supplies, but a solo can also benefit from the extra resources or even just use them to sell to the larger groups. In any scenario, it's a valuable skill to pick up as long as you have any interest in it.