Today’s post is about a product that has a great concept with decent execution. The AeroGarden is an indoor, soil-free garden system that uses Keurig-like pods to grow herbs, peppers, and other vegetables. I like cooking with fresh herbs and veggies (who doesn’t) but they usually go bad before I use them all. The AeroGarden provides a simple, mess-free way to use just the right amount of herbs and veggies you need during cooking. For a black thumb like me, this is the easiest way to have a year-round supply of herbs without any hassle.
Just prune what you need and leave the rest in the garden to continue growing.
Each AeroGarden system contains a water reservoir, automated full-spectrum LED grow lights, and 2-24 slots for the grow pods depending on the model. To start the garden, just drop the pods in, fill the water tank, add some MiracleGro solution and that’s it. The lights pop on automatically for 15 hours each day. AeroGarden sells replacement pods which take anywhere from 4-10 days to sprout depending on the yield.
Fair warning – the lights are super bright. The water tank lasts up to two weeks without being filled but your mileage may vary depending on what’s being grown.
Setting up the garden takes around 15 minutes with virtually no other maintenance required apart from keeping the water tank filled and occasionally trimming the veggies as they grow taller.
30 Days with the AeroGarden
After using the AeroGarden for a month, here are my key findings:
- Not all pods are created equal. In the GIF above, the dill took off by day 3 and grew at a much faster rate than the other herbs. I’m still trying to find the ideal growth rate mix of herbs and plants to grow. This also has some impact on waste because the dill required daily trimming once mature otherwise, you would need to raise the growth light (and slow growth of the other herbs) or the dill would be too close to the light and become damaged.
- The thyme was the only dud in the group. It seemed to die after a few weeks and never grew to the point where it could be readily harvested.
- I don’t waste nearly as much with the AeroGarden compared to buying fresh herbs from the store but there’s still some waste. The next “garden”, I’ll only use 3-4 pods and I also need to try my hand at drying excess herbs.
- The light is bright. Really bright. The lights automatically turn on for 15 hours, then off for 9 hours. You can set when the on cycle occurs and there’s also a manual on/off button which I used a few times.
While the AeroGarden costs significantly more than outdoor (or windowsill) growing, it’s been well worth the added convenience and simplicity. A replacement pack of 6 pods runs about $20 with AeroGarden models ranging from $40-$200 depending on features like Wi-Fi connectivity, to size. There’s a decent selection of different herbs and small plants to choose from, but there’s obviously not as large of a selection as you could pick from if growing a more traditional garden (indoor or outdoor).
You can learn more about AeroGarden here.