Ease of Use:
A terrific approach to grow a bountiful crop of indoor crops, vegetables and flowers.
Ever needed to grow your personal recent vegetables, herbs and/or flowers indoors with out using chemical compounds, pesticides, or GMO seeds? And how about having a compact, hydroponic unit that has an built-in grow mild system and straightforward to use “Seed Pods” (sort of just like the Okay-Cup concept) so there isn’t any messy filth, weeding, or inexperienced thumb wanted?
AeroGarden International (a part of the Scotts Miracle-Gro company) had its first introduction to the marketplace in 2006. It has since developed quite a lot of indoor gardens (Sensible Countertop GardenTM) with totally different worth points and technologies that pretty much cover the price range of anyone who needs to grow crops indoors.
Throughout our annual attendance at the National Hardware Show in Las Vegas (we’re also judges for the Lawn, Backyard & Outside Dwelling section for the show), we met with the parents from AeroGarden. They have been variety sufficient to send us their premium (9 pod) Bounty Elite Wi-Fi LED unit to assessment.
Is it nearly as good as their claims? Let’s discover out.
Jump To Section
- 1 WHAT WE RECEIVED
- 2 SPECIFICATIONS
- 3 SETTING UP THE AEROGARDEN
- 4 BRIGHT LED LIGHTS
- 5 AUTOMATIC WATER CIRCULATION
- 6 GROW ALMOST ANYTHING (NOT JUST HERBS)
- 7 FROM GERMINATION TO DINNER TABLE
- 8 HELPFUL TIPS & INSTRUCTIONS
- 9 THE BENEFITS OF HYDROPONIC VS. SOIL GROWING
- 10 THE RESULTS
- 11 IS THE WI-FI VERSION WORTH IT?
- 12 PREPARING FOR THE NEXT CROP
- 13 CUSTOMER SERVICE
- 14 WARRANTY
- 15 RECOMMENDATION
- 16 WHERE TO BUY
WHAT WE RECEIVED
Our unit came in a sturdy cardboard box and was dent and scratch free regardless of what sometimes is a rough experience from manufacturing unit to remaining destination. It came absolutely assembled (aside from plugging in two wires) and arrived with a Quick Setup Information, Seed Pod package directions, and a Gourmand Herb Seed Pod Package. There was imagined to be a trellis included within the box nevertheless it was lacking. A quick call to customer support and one was on its method – FREE of cost.
- 45W LED develop mild panel (consists of blue, purple and white LEDs)
- Three-part telescoping help pole for the LED panel
- Develop peak as much as 24″ (distance between seed pods and LED panel)
- Width: 16”
- Depth: 10” (including LCD display)
- Peak: 6 ½“ (base unit – LED panel sits on prime of this)
- LCD contact display management panel
- Wi-Fi enabled
- Smartphone app to watch and management the unit
- Chrome steel end (out there in pink, stainless and platinum)
- Four-3-6 liquid plant meals (3 oz)
SETTING UP THE AEROGARDEN
The AeroGarden got here with a well-written and diagrammed Quick Setup Information. The guide exhibits 5 Straightforward Steps “to get your AeroGarden up and growing”. The directions should have been written for different AeroGarden packaging choices, as a result of the packaging I acquired had the unit absolutely assembled – except plugging the sunshine twine into the light hood and plugging the facility twine into an electrical outlet. Restated, I solely had to carry out two out of the 5 steps. I appreciated that the unit got here nearly absolutely assembled. It made my job easier.
Establishing the AeroGarden could be very easy. After unpacking the box and reading the directions I received going. Step one is to plug the unit it. This can power up a bunch of stuff, but at this level, an important piece of drugs is the “Quick Plant” LCD display on the entrance of the unit. It all begins here. By touching the “Quick Plant” show button, the AeroGarden pc will information you through all the steps essential to get the backyard up and operating, and program the Wi-Fi system.
It’s as straightforward as adding water to the really helpful fill degree (marked contained in the fill tube space – about 1.1 gallons), including liquid plant meals per the directions on the bottle (keep in mind, extra plant meals is NOT better), inserting Seed Pods, snapping on the Develop Domes, and ensuring that there’s a Wi-fi connection to the AeroGarden’s pc (LCD show panel).
BRIGHT LED LIGHTS
Once every little thing is fired up, the develop lights will come on and the water circulator pump will begin. In contrast to some LED grow lights that look purple, these LEDs are a mixture of pink, blue and white LEDs that produce a (very!) shiny white mild. Crops want each pink and blue mild for optimal improvement – you’ll be able to study more about that right here >> Rising Seedlings Underneath Indoor Develop Lights
AUTOMATIC WATER CIRCULATION
Don’t be alarmed if the AeroGarden feels like it is possessed. The circulating water will come on as prescribed by the grow pc. It’s going to sound like a dripping or leaky faucet. This noise will disappear after a few minutes as the pump will cease.
Based mostly on the optimal develop occasions that the grow pc is about for, the water pump will cycle accordingly. There isn’t any “one size fits all” in relation to the water pump. So if you hear that operating water sound, simply know that the AeroGarden is doing its factor to take care of correct hydroponic water/liquid plant food move.
GROW ALMOST ANYTHING (NOT JUST HERBS)
We tested the Gourmand Herb package deal (nine seed pods: Curley Parsley & Italian Parsley, Dill, Mint, Thai Basil, (2) Genovese Basil, Chives and Thyme). Seed pods come with a germination guarantee – the corporate will exchange any that don’t germinate. The company also gives over 50 other seed pod kits, from lettuce and jalapeno peppers to veggies and flowers.
The kits are broken down by the number of holes which are in the planter (the number of seed pods that may fit in a specific system). Present models embrace:
Every Seed Pod Package is dedicated to a selected planter, though in case you needed to have some redundancy, different pod kits could be added from different seed pod kits. And to add to the fun, AeroGarden has added a Seed Pod Package referred to as “Grow Anything”. You present the seeds and AeroGarden supplies the remaining (labels, sponges to carry the seeds, guide, liquid vitamins, domes, and baskets). To see the complete vary of seed package choices, go to their website, or see all of their offerings on their Amazon store web page.
And eventually, if you’d like a “Seed Starter System” to germinate your personal seeds prior to planting, AeroGarden gives that too. The seedlings which are began within the AeroGarden can then be transplanted into both your indoor or outside backyard. The Seed Beginning System has 50 holes which holds the rising medium (also know as “sponges”) and a hole within the prime of the sponge to plant your personal seeds. See the AeroGarden Seed Starting System on Amazon.
I discovered the whole line of AeroGardens (and their growing options) a unbelievable solution to develop seedlings, edibles, and flowers in a confined area and with virtually unlimited mixtures and options.
FROM GERMINATION TO DINNER TABLE
All seeds have totally different germinating occasions based mostly on the kind of seed, ambient air temperature, out there vitamins and water, and lightweight levels/depth/period.
One nice thing that AeroGarden does is to manage the grower’s expectation on when the seeds ought to turn into little bitty, green leafy crops. Written on the label for each plant (Seed Pod Package) is a day range within which the plant is predicted to germinate. For instance, Chives are expected to germinate in in 8 – 12 days. Italian Parsley takes between 12 – 14 days. We reviewed the Gourmand Herbs, the place the germination occasions ranged from 4 – 21 days (Dill being the longest).
There’s a grower’s expression: “if you’re comfortable, so are your plants”. This is applicable to germination and the crops’ progress cycle. But it’s a rule of thumb quite than a precise science. Lettuce, for instance, likes cooler temperatures in the 600 – 650 F vary. Peppers and tomatoes will sprout quicker in warmer temperatures (higher than 700 F). It’s necessary to maintain the AeroGarden away from heat sources (furnace vents, stoves, and so on.) and from the cold (A/C vents, window drafts, and so on.).
We hold our home at 700 F in the course of the day and 680 F at night time. I discovered that the germination occasions (printed on every Seed Pod label) for all of the Gourmand Herb Seed Pods have been correct within their respective germination ranges (days to sprouting).
HELPFUL TIPS & INSTRUCTIONS
The AeroGarden also supplies worthwhile “Gardening Tips For Maximum Harvest”. These embrace planting, germination, pruning, watering, lighting, vitamins, pollinating, and harvesting. These people actually considered just about every little thing and the reasons are in layman’s phrases and are nicely illustrated.
The Seed Pod Package instructions are equally good in describing correct garden tending. They embrace; how one can plant your Seed Pod Package, feeding your garden, and prime ideas for nice progress (ideas for herbs, salads, tomatoes, peppers, and flowers). There’s additionally a piece on properly “Restarting Your AeroGarden” – which incorporates sanitizing your backyard (earlier than one other crop is planted), resetting your nutrient timer, setting your mild hood to the lowest position, and correct planting of your Seed Pods.
THE BENEFITS OF HYDROPONIC VS. SOIL GROWING
There are several benefits of hydroponic grow methods.
- First, the crops, as claimed by AeroGarden, grow 5x quicker than typical soil growing.
- There isn’t a messy dust to cope with.
- It’s utterly organic (although the same could be stated for a standard outside natural garden).
- Hydroponic methods take up much less area and generate greater yield per square foot.
- Hydroponics use a fast-acting liquid plant meals that goes instantly into the basis system.
- Ambient temperature for max plant well being and yield may be managed by a home’s thermostat.
- Antagonistic rising results (“Acts of God”) are just about eliminated.
Or as AeroGarden likes to put it, “Welcome to the world of indoor gardening!”
Is hydroponics the magic bullet that may exchange the outside backyard? Unlikely. There are too many individuals whose remedy is “digging in the dirt”. They identical to the texture of the soil via their fingers and all of the fun tools which are necessary to plant that good garden. Bees and other creatures can do the pollination (no paintbrush or air circulation system required here – as needed by the AeroGarden). Giant hydroponic “Farms” are expensive and dear to take care of. Regardless that the yield per sq. foot is greater in an ideal hydroponic surroundings, you’re not going to be able to cost-effectively grow sufficient tomatoes (and may them) to last you through a winter season. Hydroponics have their place and so do typical outside gardens.
However for many who want the satisfaction of recent herbs, vegetables, and flowers (in modest quantities), then you possibly can’t go incorrect with hydroponics, notably the likes of any of the AeroGarden techniques.
True to its declare, the AeroGarden produced an abundance of herbs. I had one seed pod that didn’t germanate (Thyme), however the company sent me a alternative at no cost.
Our largest challenge was to eat what we grew. We needed to lookup recipes for different herbs and, in some instances, we just let the crops grow till they reached the absolutely extended mild panel (the light panel is a 3 tubular rod telescoping system that goes from 5 ½ inches to 17 ½ inches). We needed to give away herbs to buddies as we couldn’t use them quick enough as soon as they reached full maturity.
IS THE WI-FI VERSION WORTH IT?
I’m sort of a tech geek. I really like hooking up routers, entry factors, modems and bridge networks. That’s why I asked the corporate if they might ship to me their flagship mannequin, the AeroGarden Bounty Elite Wi-Fi LED. This baby is all tricked up with the newest know-how that may speak together with your iPhone or Android gadget. It claims to watch (and provide you with a warning) by way of Wi-Fi (anyplace on the planet, offered you’ve gotten a Wi-Fi connection).
First, let me say that it’s a neat idea. House electronic units are quickly changing the dumb house into the sensible house, and the same could be stated for the high-end AeroGardens.
Unfortunately, I didn’t discover the smartphone system dependable or consistent. Typically it might send me a single notification that I had so as to add water or vitamins. I used to be expecting a number of notifications till I addressed the water refilling and plant meals addition.
The planter itself has a contact display that performs many various features (and is connected to your property’s Wi-fi network). The identical options are provided on the Wi-fi activated sensible telephone app. I discovered the alerts so inconsistent on my iPhone that I lastly gave up on this function and relied solely the LCD display on the front of the AeroGarden.
The show also beeped always when water and/or plant meals had to be added (in contrast to the unreliable sensible telephone app). This added function made the unit fool-proof as long as your house’s Wi-Fi sign isn’t interrupted. But I can stay with this, as house electronics that rely upon Wi-Fi sometimes need to be rest if the community goes down.
If the Wi-Fi went down the AeroGarden wouldn’t reset itself. It only advised me that the Wi-Fi connection was lost and the AeroGarden unit had to be reactivated again. It took a bit of time to reconnect, but nothing earth-shattering.
Bottom line, the AeroGarden with the LCD management panel labored properly. The smartphone app needs a number of work.
PREPARING FOR THE NEXT CROP
AeroGarden was sort sufficient to ship us their Seed Beginning System, a 50-hole seed germinating grid (pictured earlier in this evaluation) for us to develop our own seedlings that shall be able to plant in our outside material pots. However before beginning this undertaking, I had to prepare the AeroGarden for its new crop. This required me to take away all of the previous seed pods and roots that had grown within the hydroponic water setting.
First, I attempted to tug the used seed pods out of the planter holes. This was easier stated than achieved. The roots have been so intermeshed that it was troublesome to extract them. Once I absolutely opened the planter gap cover I came upon why. There was an entire mat of roots that had taken up your complete bottom of the water reservoir/water pump space. I needed to take a pair of bypass pruners to chop away all of the roots from the duvet.
After I had accomplished this, AeroGarden has a selected cleansing process to sanitize the water/growing reservoir which features a bleach or vinegar answer. Once the unit was completely cleaned, I used to be ready to plant once more.
As talked about above, I had some actual points with the Wi-Fi app for my smartphone. I had several questions. I attempted unsuccessfully (Three occasions) to succeed in anybody by way of the AeroGarden e mail portal. It was like sending an e mail into a black gap.
The reside “chat” was a totally totally different story. I acquired my Wi-Fi questions answered instantly. I even had a state of affairs where one of the seed pods didn’t germinate. The reside chat people have been on it pronto. They asked me a couple of questions and agreed to send out a alternative at no charge.
So, on the one hand, I found customer support utterly unresponsive by way of e mail, however uber-attentive with the reside chat. When you have questions, considerations or issues, go together with the reside chat or you possibly can name the customer service number (800) 476-9669 (which I had great success with too).
AeroGarden gives a limited guarantee towards defects in supplies and workmanship. The warranty runs for one yr on the AeroGarden and LED develop lights, from the date of the unique purchase, for the unique purchaser/consumer.
If a product must be returned for a guaranty concern, contact customer service (800) 476-9669 for a Return Authorization. I referred to as them they usually clarified a question I had about return delivery expenses. If the unit is flawed AeroGarden can pay the return delivery costs.
General, I really just like the AeroGarden Bounty Elite. It’s an exceptionally easy-to-use countertop garden that includes every part you must produce a bountiful crop of hydroponic herbs, veggies or flowers in a small area. The clear directions make set-up a breeze and the LCD panel enables you to monitor and management every part you want to maintain the system operating easily. The LED mild panel emits a vibrant white mild (not purple like some LED grow lights) and the liquid plant food offers all the vitamins your crops will want. The truth is, it produced such a bounty we had to start freely giving herbs to pals (which they beloved).
The Bounty Elite is the top-of-the-line AeroGarden however the primary rising surroundings is identical for all models so select the one that best fits your finances and area.
I’d advocate skipping the Wi-Fi enabled version; the smartphone app worked only at times and didn’t provide the notifications it ought to have.
WHERE TO BUY
The AeroGarden Bounty Elite Wi-Fi LED is out there on Amazon. It may also be purchased immediately by means of the AeroGarden web site: aerogarden.com for $429.95 (they typically have coupon codes to get a reduced price). So far as the Seed Pod Kits are concerned, many are provided on Amazon (but not all). If you want to see the complete line of Seed Pods, go to the AeroGarden web site.
AeroGarden Gourmand Herb Seed Pod Package
One of many many seed pod kits out there. This one consists of Genovese Basil, Thai Basil, Curly Parsley, Thyme, Chive, Mint, Dill, and Italian Parsley, but there are also flower seeds, lettuce, basil, and tea out there.
Last replace on 2019-02-01 / Affiliate links / Photographs from Amazon Product Advertising API