So I deliberately raised my bank alt to 90 and dragged them to Exalted AC so they could literally do nothing but make those new 28-slot bags. While I do not encourage this at all (it's a pretty big time investment for a short-term gain), there might be some of you out there that just don't play every day, but can at least log on to take advantage of the daily Imperial Silk transmute. Now, if all you do is grow cloth, you're very likely getting more cloth per day than you can turn into silk. If you have a few extra motes, you can finish the job and burn that excess cloth with Song of Harmony. So the question is:
"What is the best way to plant crops to maximize my Imperial Silk production?"
As you know already, a maxxed-out farmer can get 16 plant slots per day. A tailor would be interested in planting only Windshear Cactus and Songbells.
-- each day, you can transmute 40 cloth into one Imperial Silk.
-- you can turn 30 motes and 25 cloth into bonus Imperial Silk an infinite number of times (but if all you're doing is farming, this will be at most once/day also).
Let's say x = the number of Cactus, y = the number of Songbell, and t = the number of days (which will not matter -- the best rate is the best rate, regardless of how long you do it).
Since the plants were upgraded, I seem to get about 4 cloth on average per Cactus. Everyone gets one mote per Songbell. Motes give you the Song of Harmony, and that should be taken into consideration first.
Number of motes = t*y
Number of motes needed for one Song of Harmony = 30
Number of Songs of Harmony = ty/30
Number of cloth needed per Song: 25 (5 per bolt, 5 bolts per Song)
Number of cloth needed to transmute all your motes: ty/30*25 = 5ty/6
The total number of cloth, using my average of 4 per cactus, would be 4*x*t. The idea is, once the Songs are done, to have exactly enough left over to transmute one Imperial Silk per day with your daily cooldown, and have none left over. Each transmute takes 8 bolts = 40 cloth, so the number needed is 40t.
Therefore, we have
4xt - 5ty/6 = 40t
and due to the constraints of the farm's plant plots
x + y = 16
In the first line, we see that t is completely irrelevant. Finding the value where both lines intersect gives you y = 4.9655, which we can safely round up to 5 Songbell plants each day. x must therefore be the remaining 11 slots filled with Cactus plants.
EXAMPLE: t = 120
11 cacti per day * 4 cloth/cactus * 120 days = 5,280 cloth
5 motes per day * 120 days = 600 motes = 20 Songs of Harmony
20 Songs takes 500 cloth away, leaving 4,780 cloth left. That's 956 bolts, or 119.5 Imperial Silk transmutes. Not perfect, but we were rounding to y = 5, and missing maybe one day in 120 is not the worst thing in the world.
Five Songbell/day means you're casting Song of Harmony every six days like clockwork.
"What if you are getting more cloth per cactus?"
While my own average is closer to 4, other people have reported getting an average closer to 5. Re-doing all the above math with 5 cloth per cactus gives y = 6.857 Songbell per day. While I might accept that the real average cloth/cactus is over 4, I really doubt the real average is greater than 5, based purely on comments in wowhead and this forum so far, so the real value of y is probably somewhere between these two results.
The best way to maximize your farming yield, if your ONLY consideration is maximizing Imperial Silk, is to plant either 5 or 6 Songbell and the rest Windshear Cactus. Based on my own personal observations, I recommend five Songbell to start, and if you find yourself routinely with cloth left over, upgade to six until you run out of bonus cloth.
If you do nothing but farm your tiller plots, that's fine. Generally speaking though, as long as you're doing other things in wow, you're better off just planting straight songbell and getting the SoH every 3 days instead of every 6. It's pretty easy to get the 2 stacks of cloth you need for the daily imperial cooldown from other sources (quest mobs, dungeons, rare spawns etc.). Even if you don't want to do anything on your tailor, cloth sells pretty cheap on most realms anyway. Since spirits of harmony are much more difficult to get, you're better off farming those instead.
Right, this is purely for either characters who don't play (like my alt), or times when you can't really do much else. These are the only locked figures for generating either resource, any other source of them is highly variable.
Thinking I would just go all songbells also. I've just spoon fed my tailor all of my cloth from my 3 90s that I already maxed First Aid on (old habit dating back to vanilla, max FA on every damn toon >.<). I think I have ~30 silk worth of bolts to go currently, but I just moved my tailor toon to Halfhill this weekend.
If you need cloth you should plant enigma seeds and sell the herbs and golden lotus and buy the cloth from the AH. Youll probably get much more this way unless cloth is really really expensive on your server.
If you want extra silks you can plant songbell seeds and get another silk every other day.
If you want to make the most gold the first one is better.
You obviously have more than 1 level 90. Take your main & other 90's and plant cactus for a week. I averaged 80-90 cloth per day which is more like 5 cloth per plant. After 7 days, you will have enough cloth to cover around 6 weeks of SOH planting on your tailor. If you have 4 lv 90's plus your tailor, then 1 week of planting cloth on each non tailor 90 will give you enough cloth to do your daily and your SOH for 6 weeks. Total cost 360 gold. 6 weeks of imperial silk and SOH will give you enough silk for 5 bags with a value between 20-25k gold.
If you want the maximum amount of silk cloths a day, why plant windshear Cactus? Cloth is not exactly expensive or low drop. If you purely have your character planted there for bags and do not play it, just plant songbell seeds, you get 1.566667 silken cloths a day. Buy additional cloth if you are short.
Nothing OT, but after farming songbell seeds almost every day since the release of MoP, I created 22 of those bags (alts and my mains bank need bagspace to), and still have lots of spare silk. With all the vanity stuff though, i need more bagspace :P
Planting nothing but songbells will give you 16 motes every day. This means every 8 days you get 128 Motes of Harmony. This translates into 4 x 3 Spirits of Harmony or 4 silk. Those 8 days also gave you 8 silk from the daily CD. So every 8 days you get 12 silk = 1 bag.
You also get 8 motes of harmony left over every 8 days, meaning every 360 days you can make 1 extra bag. 360 days / 8 = 45 bags + 1 extra = 46 bags.
Cost wise: you buy all the cloth and 1 stack of cloth = 30g
45 bags = 45 x (8 x 2 stacks cloth + 4 x 3/4stack cloth) = 45 x (8 x 2x30g + 4 x 22.5g) = 45 x (480 + 90) = 25,650g
1 bag = 12 x 3/4stack cloth = 12 x 22.5g = 270g Total cost = 270g + 26,650g = 26,920g
Total profit = 46 x 4,500g = 207,000 - 26,920 = 180,080g per 360 days
5 songbells per day means 1 extra silk craft every 6 days. This means every 72 days you get 6 bags from daily cd's, and 1 extra from Song of Harmony. So 7 bags every 72 days. Every 360 days that's 35 bags (360 / 72 = 5 * 7 = 35).
Total profit = 35 x 4,500g = 157,500g per 360 days
Variations on this idea exist for different playstyles. My original example was for someone who did nothing but plant every day on a single character, and as such, does not have access to the AH, gold to pay for the AH, or the ability to farm the cloth. Basically, it's for a bank alt, or someone on "vacation" from active play. If you have the time to plant or get drops on multiple characters, or use the AH, then of course the numbers change drastically in favor of Songbells.
Originally Posted by rohendar
In order for the OP's way to be more profitable than just planting songbells every day the price of cloth has to be 65g per stack or higher. An entire year long.
If you're interested in making a profit, I would recommend you hurry. As mains and alts get their bag slots filled, the price of bags will slowly but surely tank. On my server, for example, they're already 3500 and falling, which throws off the cost/benefit ratio. Also there's the additional loss of equipping the bags yourself, which I plan on doing for the forseeable future. On the other hand, if you play the AH for profit, go for it, but the strategy set up above is horrifyingly poor for profit generation.
I wouldnt recommend using bags as your gold source at all. These expensive bags sell rather poor. Leg enchants and 496 hands and chest are better items for some gold making. The enchants still sell for 500g+ on my server, and hands can be sold for 5k. It will cost you 6 blood orbs, but for 150-200 each, you get almost triple the gold for your silk cloth compaired to a bag (4k on my server, so 333g per silk, 1k for each silk for hands, although, not very easy to sell).
My advice is using the silk to sell some stuff once in a while, but mainly use it for the comfort of having lots of bagspace for you and your alts.
Or just farm Spirits of Harmony. This was two days of work at 5 hours each.
Edit: If you are wondering why I have 0 gold, its cause I wanted to see how much gold loot I was getting per hour. Roughly ~1000g Minus the 800+ Windwool Cloth and other Greens. Most of the farming was in 40mins. - 20 of the other mins. Was spent DEing and AH. So total gain per hour was roughly 8-10k depending if I didn't screw over the market