My friend made a machine that automatically farms cactuses and I was wondering if there is any combustable items that can be farmed without human intervention?

  • Cactus farms also aren't fully automatic, they rely on random ticks, which only happen in a radius around players. Apr 14, 2019 at 20:15
  • 1
    @FabianRöling The cactus farm we built uses a 0 tick bug/feature to induce growing, so it actually runs as long as the chunk is loaded. I don't know if that's legit or not, but it seems like it uses the games mechanics fairly.
    – ngood97
    Apr 14, 2019 at 20:19
  • Most painless way is kelp farm. You still need to craft the kelp blocks themselves by hand, though.
    – Dan Bron
    Apr 14, 2019 at 20:40
  • @ngood97 Yes, bug. Don't complain if it gets fixed. But thanks for the info, this narrows down the search. Apr 14, 2019 at 21:57
  • @FabianRöling your definition of "fully automatic" is not one that I have ever seen used. "fully automatic" means "zero player interaction required." But player presence is acceptable.
    – John
    Apr 15, 2019 at 18:17

4 Answers 4


I discussed this in a chat before, the topic back then was keeping a furnace busy forever. My research results were that the only smeltable items that could be farmed fully automatically, meaning with no player even being on the server, were raw chicken and cobblestone.
And no fuel item was farmable fully automatically. That was in July, since then a few smeltable items and fuel items were added, but you still can't fully automatically farm a fuel item.

So what is the next best thing? Random ticks and mob spawning. They happen in a big radius around players, so you would just need one player being in the area, who does regular player stuff or sits at a different farm or whatever.

The fuel items that only depend on random ticks or mob spawning are:

  • Bamboo
  • Coal (from wither skeletons)

(One funny alternative would be banners from pillager raids. But they require you to at least punch them yourself.)

  • Would blaze rods also work? It seems like you can get them without intervention with blazes.
    – ngood97
    Apr 14, 2019 at 23:12
  • Oh, right, they also spawn regularly in the Nether now! Added. Apr 15, 2019 at 5:12
  • Do spawners not count? That was my thought, but I'm not sure.
    – ngood97
    Apr 15, 2019 at 5:17
  • Depends on what you're willing to do for the items. You definitely have to have a player online, but blaze spawners only work in a 16 block radius, while random ticks and regular mob spawning happen in a ~128 block radius. Apr 15, 2019 at 7:39
  • Blazes require the player to kill them to drop their rods correct?
    – John
    Apr 15, 2019 at 18:10

There is one way, is using an automated wood farm. It works with a wither boss, you can see here:

The second way is making an semi-automated farm with blaze rods, but blazes needs to be killed by hand. (Blaze farm:



As @Dan Bron implied in their comment, one other way that would work without having to go to the nether would be using a kelp farm. This one is simple and only requires a piston and observer. There are many possible layouts for kelp farms, but all you have to do is put the kelp into a smelter and make dried kelp, then once you have dried kelp you would craft dried kelp blocks to use as a combustable material. reference youtube video

  • My friend actually built this setup with a row of furnaces that feed from a chest with uncooked kelp coming from a farm and outputting the dried kelp to another chest. The only manual part is you need to handcraft the kelp blocks and add to the fuel chest. This build is as of the time of the post though, I haven't kept up with the more recent updates.
    – ngood97
    Sep 3, 2020 at 5:39

The most common approach is to use the carpet duplicator - it's a bug exploitation but it's very efficient and easily keeps up with the demand, without problems.

The only other somewhat viable approach is sticks from the witch farm.

Blazes need to be killed by a player or tamed wolf to drop blaze rods. Wither skeletons are a little too rare spawns to make fully automatic coal farming viable (although if you do have an afk wither skeleton farm, you might add a full auto mode.)

Since 1.14 full auto bamboo farms become a viable source. Of course player presence within random tick range is required.

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