Stardew Valley is a great game focused on bringing life to your grandfather’s old farm. The very first skill you’re going to train is farming.

Farming is related to planting, growing, and harvesting crops on your farm. It is also related to raising the animals on your farm.

Farming can be the most profitable skill in the game depending on the path you take.

Once you hit level 5, you’ll be given a choice between two professions in Stardew Valley, Rancher or Tiller? You’ll have to make some other choices along the way as well so be sure to read our complete guide to the farming skill in Stardew Valley!

Stardew Valley Farming Levels: 1-4

stardew valley farming rancher or tiller

After planting and harvesting 13 parsnips or a combination of other crops, you will reach level 1 farming. Congrats! But you have a long road ahead of you till you hit level 10.

Along the way, you’ll unlock some useful equipment to help you on your journey. Here are the crafting recipe unlocks for levels 1 to 4.

  • Level 1: Scarecrow, Basic Fertilizer
  • Level 2: Mayonnaise Machine, Stone Fence, Sprinkler
  • Level 3: Bee House, Speed-Gro, Farmer’s Lunch
  • Level 4: Preserves Jar, Basic Retaining Soil, Iron Fence

Basic Fertilizer and Sprinklers are two of the most important unlocks here. The others are all useful in their own right and should definitely be explored, but basic fertilizer and sprinklers are two items you will immediately craft after unlocking them.

Basic fertilizer gives your crops an increased chance to be a higher quality. Be sure to remember that quality is decided upon harvesting, so eat a Farmer’s lunch before harvesting any crops!

Farmer’s lunch increases your Farming level by 3 giving you a better shot at getting gold or silver crops.

The sprinkler is a great addition to any farm. It automatically waters a certain amount of crops in its radius every morning allowing you to save precious time and energy.

Stardew Valley Farming Level 5: Rancher or Tiller?

stardew valley rancher or tiller

At level 5 Farming, Stardew Valley players will be given a choice – Rancher or Tiller? If you pick Rancher animal products will be worth 20% more. Tiller makes your crops worth 10% more.

It seems like a pretty straight-forward choice between rancher or tiller right? If you want to raise animals, pick rancher. If you want to grow crops, pick tiller. Well, it actually isn’t such an easy choice.

At level 10 you will get to pick between two more professions depending on your choice at level 5. If you plan on raising animals, Rancher actually isn’t the best option.

At level 10 you can pick a profession that makes artisan goods worth 40% more! That is way better than the 20% bonus from Rancher.

Almost all end animal products are finished goods, so if you want to raise animals you actually should take Tiller to maximize your late game profit.

Why is Tiller Considered Better?

Tiller proffers a distinct advantage in the nascent stages of the game, courtesy of the incredibly lucrative crops available to be harvested.

By opting for Tiller, you shall be granted a slightly superior modifier to your pecuniary resources, thus endowing you with a critical monetary edge over your peers and competitors.

However, this is merely the tip of the iceberg – Tiller also flaunts more refined specialization trees that possess an indelible impact on your economic expansion as the game unfurls.

With the prudent selection of specializations, you shall be able to generate even more riches and expand your agricultural dominion to unprecedented heights.

In summary, if your ambition is to triumph in Stardew Valley and maximize the fruits of your farming labor, then unequivocally, Tiller is the way to go. So why settle for mediocrity when you can opt for the superior alternative?

Stardew Valley Farming Levels: 6-9

stardew valley farming rancher or tiller
  • Level 6: Cheese Press, Hardwood Fence, Quality Sprinkler
  • Level 7: Loom, Quality Retaining Soil
  • Level 8: Oil Maker, Keg, Deluxe Speed-Gro
  • Level 9: Seed Maker, Iridium Sprinkler, Quality Fertilizer

The Farming level 6 to 9 unlocks for Farming are even more useful than the last ones.

Not only do you get upgraded sprinklers, but you get better fertilizer along with a ton of great equipment to use on your farm to make artisan goods. It’ll come in handy when you take the Artisan profession at level 10.

Stardew Valley Farming Level 10: Coopmaster or Shepherd? Artisan or Agriculturist?

At level 10 you will be given a choice depending on which profession you picked at level 5.

If you picked Rancher you will have a choice between Coopmaster and Shepherd. If you picked Tiller you will have a choice between Artisan and Agriculturists.

Each one is different and depending on your playstyle you might want to pick one over another, however, there is a definite winner in our book for the best profession to take at level 10.

Coopmaster or Shepherd?

stardew valley coopmaster or shepherd

This choice between Coopmaster or Shepherd is pretty much dependent on your playstyle.

Are you raising coop animals or barn animals? Depending on the animals you raise, only one will be beneficial to you.

So, if you took Rancher we suggest you look at your animals if you need help deciding which profession to take.

They both essentially offer the same benefits. You get to befriend that type of animal quicker and there is a time reduction in production.

That’s why these two professions are a toss-up. Pick what fits your playstyle!

Artisan or Agriculturist?

stardew valley artisan or agriculturist

Artisan is without a doubt the best profession in the farming skill tree. When it comes to deciding between Artisan or Agriculturist, its a pretty easy decision.

The 40% buff to artisan goods is insane! This can easily make artisan goods the most profitable venture for your farm. Sure, a 10% increase in crop growth is nice, but is it really better than the 40% Artisan offers? We don’t think so.

Also, while Artisan does list oil as an artisan good, it will not be buffed by this profession.

We don’t know why it says it right there in the box but doesn’t get buffed, it’s just how the game works sadly.

So, What Farming Professions Should I Pick in Stardew Valley?

So, what should you take in Stardew Valley, Rancher or Tiller? Coopmaster or Shepherd? Artisan or Agriculturist? Well, we think there is a clear winner here when it comes to farming professions.

The optimal professions are Tiller and Artisan. The 10% bonus to crops is a nice bonus in the early game if you choose to sell any crops and the 40% bonus to artisan goods is an insane end-game boost to your income.

Rancher and either of the two professions after that just doesn’t carry the same oomph as Tiller and Artisan.

Of course, if you have built your whole farm around raising animals Rancher might be a better choice. However, even then, the 40% bonus from Artisan applies to a lot of the finished animal products.

How to Prioritize One Over the Other?

When deciding between the two skills, it’s important to consider your playstyle and goals in Stardew Valley. If you enjoy spending a lot of time tending to your crops and creating artisan goods, then the Tiller skill might be the better option for you.

With this skill, you’ll be able to increase the value of your crops and make more profit from selling them. Additionally, artisan goods like wine and jelly can be sold for even higher prices.

On the other hand, if you enjoy taking care of animals and want to focus on animal products, then the Rancher skill might be a better fit for you. This skill will allow you to increase the value of animal products like milk, wool, and eggs.

You’ll also be able to collect these products more frequently, which can result in more profits in the long run.

At the end of the day, it is up to you and your playstyle. Pick whichever one fits your path!


Q: Should I focus on leveling up my farming skill in Stardew Valley?

A: Absolutely! Leveling up your farming skill in Stardew Valley can greatly benefit your gameplay experience. It allows you to craft better farming equipment, increase your crop yields, and unlock new recipes and items.

Q: What are the benefits of choosing the Rancher skill over the Tiller skill in Stardew Valley?

A: The Rancher skill focuses on raising animals and earning profit from animal products such as milk, eggs, and wool. On the other hand, the Tiller skill focuses on growing crops and earning profit from selling them.

Choosing the Rancher skill can be more profitable in the long run as animal products have a higher profit margin than crops.

Q: Can I switch between the Rancher and Tiller skills in Stardew Valley?

A: Yes, you can switch between the Rancher and Tiller skills in Stardew Valley by visiting the Statue of Uncertainty in the sewers. However, there is a cost associated with switching, so it is important to carefully consider which skill you want to invest in before making the switch.

Q: How do I level up my farming skill in Stardew Valley?

A: You can level up your farming skill in Stardew Valley by performing farming-related activities such as watering crops, harvesting crops, and caring for animals. You can also craft and use farming equipment to increase your skill level.

Q: Are there any tips for maximizing my crop yields in Stardew Valley?

A: Yes, there are several tips for maximizing your crop yields in Stardew Valley. These include planting crops in the correct season, using fertilizer and sprinklers to improve crop quality and reduce watering time, and planting a diverse range of crops to earn more profit.

Additionally, you can focus on growing high-profit crops such as blueberries and cranberries to earn more money.


Well, well, well. It looks like we’ve reached the end of our virtual farming journey, my dear Stardew Valley fans. And what have we learned? That mastering farming skills is essential to achieving success in the game, of course!

But let’s not forget the all-important decision of choosing between the Rancher and Tiller skills. It’s like trying to choose which flavor of potato chips to buy at the store. Do you go with the classic Ranch, or mix it up with some spicy Tiller?

No matter which skill you choose, though, leveling up your farming is a must. It’s like the saying goes, “No pain, no gain”. But in this case, it’s more like “No juice, no crops”.

If you’re interested in more Stardew Valley content check out our other guides on whether to pick Mushrooms or Bats and whether to be a Miner or Geologist!