RDR2: How to Beat Every Herbalist Challenge

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Red Dead Redemption 2 players can try their hand at herbalism with the game’s Herbalist Challenges: ten ranks of tasks centered around gathering and using the plants found in the game. Plants are scattered all throughout the game’s expansive map, including the elusive regions of Guarma and New Austin. Completing the Herbalist Challenges will familiarize the player with all the different uses of these plants and herbs and help with exploring the regions of the map.

While some of the later tasks can take quite a bit of searching, each Challenge completed earns players a reward. Sometimes these errands result in additional Health XP and money, while others unlock reinforced equipment as a reward. These unlocked items can be bought by visiting one of the Trappers located around the map.

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Related: Red Dead Redemption 2: Survivalist Challenges Guide

As with the other single-player challenges, there are ten ranks of Herbalist Challenges, each with its own specific task. Players must complete one rank before unlocking the next, and many of these errands will not count plants already encountered or stored in the satchel. However, these quests can be completed on the go with some patience as players progress through the main storyline.

Completing Every Herbalist Challenge in Red Dead Redemption 2

Raspberries Grow on Bushes in Red Dead Redemption 2

Herbalist Challenge #1 – Gather 6 Yarrow Plants

Beating every Herbalist Challenge in Red Dead Redemption 2 starts with fairly simple tasks. The first rank requires players to gather six yarrow plants, which can be found in the grassy plains of Lemoyne and New Hanover. Completing this task unlocks the Herbalist Off-Hand Holster. The next rank, which involves picking and eating all four types of berries found in RDR2, may take a little more time but is a similarly straightforward errand. Arthur even gets 25 Health XP and $5 for earning this rank.


Herbalist Challenge #2 – Craft 7 items Using Sage

In the third rank, players must craft seven items using Sage as an ingredient. While the game has three different types of sage, this task refers to Hummingbird Sage specifically. Hummingbird Sage can be found in the grassy areas of the map, such as Lemoyne, West Elizabeth, and New Hanover. Try searching by groups of trees or along the Kamassa River to locate the plant. Once gathered, Arthur can use a campfire to craft Potent Bitters, Special Bitters, Potent Miracle Tonic, Potent Horse Stimulant, or Horse Ointment. Once seven separate items have been made using Sage, the third Herbalist rank has been achieved, and players will unlock the Herbalist Gun Belt.


Herbalist Challenge #3 – Pick 5 Mushrooms and Feed Them To a Horse

Next, players will need to gather five mushrooms and feed them to Arthur’s trusty horse. They don’t need to be different types of mushrooms, and if there are already some in the satchel, those qualify for this task. Since the fungi can be easy to miss, remember that Arthur can use Eagle Eye to highlight harvestable plants nearby. Bay Bolete can be found in West Elizabeth near Caliban’s Seat, and Chanterelles are scattered in the grasslands of Lemoyne and New Hanover. Ram’s Head grows in the forests of Ambarino and West Elizabeth, and Parasol Mushrooms are found in the Heartlands of Lemoyne or wooded areas like Cumberland Forest. Players will receive 50 Health XP and $10 once the horse has eaten five mushrooms.


Related: Red Dead Redemption 2: How to Complete All 10 Bandit Challenges

Herbalist Challenge #4 – Craft 9 items Using Indian Tobacco

Similar to the third task, Herbalist rank 5 requires players to craft nine items, this time with Indian Tobacco. It’s likely that Arthur already has some in his satchel since Indian Tobacco is easy to find in RDR2. Players can craft Potent Miracle Tonic, Potent Snake Oil, and Special Snake Oil with this plant. Use a campfire to craft nine items with Indian Tobacco to finish this task and earn another 50 Health XP and $10.

Herbalist Challenge #5 – Pick 15 Different Species of Herbs

The next Challenge is a little more time-consuming. Players must pick 15 different herb species, though Arthur can pick plants he’s harvested before. Berries, mushrooms, and orchids will also count toward the total. Simply riding around and picking plants should wrap this task up quickly, but struggling players can always check for the small plant illustrations on the Red Dead Redemption 2 map for a general idea of their location. Players earn 100 Health XP and $15 for collecting these herbs.


Herbalist Challenge #6 – Craft & Consume 5 Miracle Tonics

Herbalist rank 7 seems manageable, only requiring Arthur to craft and consume five Special Miracle Tonics, but players may not have come across this recipe yet. The recipe can be acquired by looting a chest at a camp a little above the first “E” in West Elizabeth on the map or purchasing the pamphlet from Fences after “A Short Walk in a Pretty Town” has been finished. Once players use the recipe to craft five Special Miracle Tonics, then use them at some point, they will unlock the Herbalist Holster.

Herbalist Challenge #7 – Use Oleander Sage To Craft 6 Poison Weapons

Next, the rank 8 task is completed by crafting six poison weapons with Oleander Sage. This plant is found in Bayou Nwa near Saint-Denis and along the banks of the Kamassa River in Lemoyne. Once enough has been collected, start crafting Poison Arrows or Poison Throwing Knives. These weapons may not earn RDR2 players’ top spot, but after making six for this Challenge, they will receive another 100 Health XP and $15.

Related: Red Dead Redemption 2: Wild Feverfew Locations

Herbalist Challenge #8 – Pick One of Each Species of Herb

Arthur Picks Berries for the Herbalist Challenge in Red Dead Redemption 2

The ninth Herbalist Challenge is arguably the most difficult, as it requires players to pick one of every species of herb. Any plants harvested prior to receiving this Challenge don’t count and will need to be picked again. The game doesn’t keep track of harvested plants, so players will need to keep track themselves. Below is a list of each type of plant required to complete this task and the general areas to look for them:

Plants and Herbs

  • Alaskan Ginseng: Ambarino, West Elizabeth
  • American Ginseng: New Hanover, West Elizabeth
  • Blackcurrant: New Austin
  • Burdock Root: alongside rivers and other bodies of water
  • Common Bulrush: alongside rivers and other bodies of water
  • Creeping Thyme: New Austin, New Hanover
  • Desert Sage: New Austin
  • English Mace: Ambarino, New Austin
  • Golden Currant: New Hanover, West Elizabeth
  • Hummingbird Sage: Lemoyne, West Elizabeth
  • Indian Tobacco: Ambarino, Lemoyne, West Elizabeth
  • Milkweed: Lemoyne
  • Oleander Sage: Lemoyne
  • Oregano: all regions, usually in grasslands
  • Prairie Poppy: New Austin, West Elizabeth
  • Red Sage: New Austin
  • Vanilla Flower: Lemoyne
  • Violet Snowdrop: Ambarino
  • Wild Carrot: Lemoyne, New Austin, New Hanover
  • Wild Feverfew: New Austin
  • Wild Mint: all regions, usually near wetlands
  • Yarrow: Lemoyne, New Hanover

Berries

  • Blackberry: Ambarino, West Elizabeth
  • Evergreen Huckleberry: along the Kamassa River
  • Red Raspberry: Lemoyne, New Hanover
  • Wintergreen Berry: Ambarino, New Hanover

Mushrooms

  • Bay Bolete: New Hanover, West Elizabeth
  • Chanterelle: Lemoyne, New Hanover
  • Parasol Mushroom: New Hanover
  • Ram’s Head: Ambarino, West Elizabeth

Orchids

  • Acuna’s Star Orchid: Bayou Nwa
  • Cigar Orchid: Bluewater Marsh (Lemoyne)
  • Clamshell Orchid: Bayou Nwa, Scarlett Meadows (Lemoyne)
  • Dragon’s Mouth Orchid: O’Creagh’s Run (Ambarino)
  • Ghost Orchid: Bayou Nwa
  • Lady of the Night Orchid: Bayou Nwa
  • Lady Slipper Orchid: West Elizabeth
  • Moccasin Orchid: Roanoke Ridge
  • Night Scented Orchid: Bayou Nwa
  • Queen’s Orchid: Bayou Nwa
  • Rat Tail Orchid: Bayou Nwa
  • Sparrow Egg Orchid: Roanoke Ridge
  • Spider Orchid: Bayou Nwa

Several of these plants are difficult to reach until later in the game. Some, like Desert Sage and Wild Feverfew, grow in inaccessible areas until the epilogue. However, once players have finally collected one of each of these plants, they will be rewarded with 150 Health XP and $20.

Herbalist Challenge #9 – Season & Cook all 11 Types of Meat

Players must Season and Cook Meat for the Red Dead Redemption 2 Herbalist Challenge

For the final Herbalist Challenge, players must season and cook 11 different types of meat. Since different animals provide different meat in Red Dead Redemption 2, there are several ways to complete this. Note that some types of meat can’t be seasoned and therefore do not count toward this total. Listed below is each type of meat required for this task:


  • Big Game
  • Crustacean
  • Exotic Bird
  • Flaky Fish
  • Game
  • Mutton
  • Plump Bird
  • Pork
  • Prime Beef
  • Succulent Fish
  • Venison

Remember to season the meat with Creeping Thyme, Oregano, or Wild Mint before cooking it, or it won’t count for this task. Players will unlock the Herbalist after each of these meats, such as the Flaky Fish, has been seasoned and cooked. Perhaps more importantly, however, all ten Herbalist Challenges have been successfully completed.

Next: Red Dead Redemption 2: Best Things To Do After Beating The Game

Red Dead Redemption 2 is available on the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/s, and PC.


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