AeroGarden Review

February 21st, 2008

My wife got me an AeroGarden for Christmas. I had seen these before, and even was offered a gig consulting for the company with their Internet marketing, but overall held off because of our cats, and their penchant for eating anything I try to grow indoors.

My wife though was, apparently, willing to sacrifice for me a spot in our dining room the cats cannot reach and so she bought me one, with the included herb packet.
My AeroGarden
Other than gardening, my second most active hobby is cooking, and I do like using fresh herbs when I can, so this makes the product attractive to me. I get fresh herbs in winter. Anyone who has ever bought fresh herbs at the grocery store knows how expensive they can be.

Setup was fairly easy, and as an experienced gardener, altogether unconfusing. However a gardening newbie might not fully understand how aeroponics works and not find it all as intuitive as I did.

I received my first disappointment shortly after setting it up though. I always assumed you could grow anything you have seeds for with this system, but they instead seem to just use proprietary little seed pods, which aren’t of course as cheap as seeds from other sources. A little bit of a razor blade business model maybe?

So I had the herbal seed packet, which included two types of basil, parsley, mint, dill, chives, and cilantro. I set the machine up and started it going and waited. After two weeks everything was growing except the cilantro, after 3 weeks still, no cilantro. So I was quite happy because I think cilantro is nasty. I tucked some flat leaf parsley seeds I had in the cilantro pod and they are now growing. This makes me hope that maybe I will figure out a way to reuse the pods (the problem is, they will be full of the roots from the previous growth).

Since that time the basil has grown really well, but the other plants notsomuch, partially because the basil may be crowding them out. It wasn’t my choice though, there was an actual diagram included with the seeds to prevent crowding, apparently though, it just doesn’t work.

I’ve already used and harvested the basil a few times, but I don’t know when, if ever, I’ll harvest the others. They just haven’t grown enough yet.

The grow lights I find a little disconcerting. They appear to be normal fluorescent grow lights, and yet they give off way more heat than normal fluorescent grow lights I’ve seen before. Additionally they do not lock into their sockets, at all, and so every once in awhile I have to push them back into the sockets they have come loose from.

I also have run into the problem that happens to all who grow indoors, weak stems and drooping plants. Any gardener will tell you that plants develop strong stems in response to wind and other disturbances like rain. Plants grown indoors do not have this and so often end up weak and unable to support their own weight. I read a review where someone had setup a fan across from her AeroGarden on a timer to simulate a daily breeze, quite frankly I don’t want to go to so much effort.

Overally I have a mediocre opinion of this product. Okay, for herbs and maybe salad greens, it could be useful. But I don’t see it really being able to grow good veggies like peppers as the marketing material says it could, I don’t see the stems being able to support the weight. Additionally I dislike that you’re dependent on them for seed pods, and the light socket seems poorly made.

I don’t mind having it certainly, but I’m unsure if I would have ever bought it for myself.

18 Responses to “AeroGarden Review”

  1. Ronnie  Says:

    Wow that’s really neat, I’ve never seen an AeroGarden. How much does it cost?

  2. frid  Says:

    Ronnie: it retails for about $150. They also have a miniature version for $100.

    Backyard Gardener: from the picture it looks like the basil is shading your other plants. I’d take a bit off the top so the others can get some light. Your dill and chives will get tall, and you will have plenty of thyme.

    They do make empty pods designed for putting your own seeds in; it’s all on their website

    I have made some of my own Aerogarden observations on my blog. I haven’t had any problem with droopage. I really like them; I have drunk the Kool-Aid. Also check out

  3. Rees Cowden  Says:

    Thanks for the review Chris,
    I’ve seen these things advertised all overthe place for a while now and of course on the advertisments the plants look great. I may go ahead and give one a try just to see for myself but I’ll have lowered expectations now, which sounds like a good thing.
    Rees Cowden
    No Brown Thumbs

  4. Kristal L. Rosebrook  Says:

    I can see the benefit of this product and growing some main herbs, as you know herbs need a contained area to grow. Who doesn’t love fresh herbs! Thanks for the feed back.

    Kristal L. Rosebrook

  5. Tabatha  Says:

    I bought one of these for myself last June. I am on my 3rd round with it and I still like it. After round 2 the pump became a bit touchy. The connections seem to get corroded quite easily and then the pump will randomly stop working. If you don’t notice it right away you can loose some plants. I lost 1 tomato plant that way.
    Anyhow, I have the master gardener kit but have yet to use it. After my mini roses finish up I am going to try it out.

  6. Lisa  Says:

    There is just nothing better to add to your dishes in the middle of winter than some fresh herbs! I’m sure the light will help them last a little longer than the ones I keep on my window sills throughout winter. Good luck and happy cooking!

  7. Henry  Says:

    Im looking to try this gadget out myself..I think I’ll buy the deluxe model first, since almost all the reviews are possitive and the pics on indy sites are great.
    Im actually planing if the first herb batch is ok to place it and perhaps a second inside a closet lined with tin foil. This way I can grow larger veggies without lack of lighting…say a full sized tomato in the middle with Cucumbers and squash branching off on the sides.
    2 Questions: Can the top light be taken off and still work? *in case a plant grows past 2 feet*

    And is there any info in the kit that tells the exact type of bulb and the chem. makeup of the tablets?

  8. plantgirl  Says:

    I’ve been wanting an aerogarden forever – but your post is making me think twice about it. maybe a planter box stuck in the kitchen window that self waters would be just as good & a heckofalot cheaper…

  9. foobar  Says:

    Cilantro can be hard to start from seed.

    Try Red Robin tomatoes in this thing.

  10. Janet Jenson  Says:

    Although we have only had our AeroGarden 3 (mini with 3 growing holes) for a week, hubby and I both love it so much that we already ordered a Deluxe. We would have gotten the Pro except that we don’t like the darker color. The clean white appearance is part of the appeal in our view. We don’t know how they will do down the road a piece but I’m still shaking my head in wonderment to see a 2″ tall bushy marigold seedling thriving in what used to be a dark corner of the kitchen.

  11. Kuda  Says:

    That is pretty amazing. I might just buy one now! I think there are some pretty good deals that go on around Target. My friend got it there for only $70.

    I will check soon 🙂

  12. Sean  Says:

    We’ve had our Aerogarden for 36 days now, and are having great success with it. We’ve already harvested twice, which took only a few minutes. With our success, we actually have already purchased a second AeroGarden classic. With the success and enjoyment we’ve had with our AeroGarden, my wife has begun a daily blog describing our experience and enjoyment with it.

  13. Jean  Says:

    I’ve had my aerogarden for 2 months now and my herbs are growing like mad. I can’t keep up with the dill, I find I’m even adding as a green to my sandwiches just to keep it pruned back. I have the space saver 6 and just bought an elite with the special offer of an extra seed kit( salad greens) and 2 replacement bulbs all for free. Free shipping right now too. Looking forward to having fresh salad greens and fresh herbs in the dressing.

  14. C C  Says:

    I found that cilantro seeds need a few days of dark to sprout. I put a little piece of card board over the hole and checked daily for a sprout. It took about three days. I also did a planting of the same seeds in a soiless mix in a little pot that could get light from the Aerogarden. The plants in the test pot are growing very slowly compared to the aerogarden plants. I even use water from the aerogarden for the test pot so that they both got the same chemical feeding.

  15. Mysty  Says:

    My biggest regret about the aerogarden is the amount of electricity they use. Our utility bill increased by $25 for one. I bought this because I no longer am able to garden outside and we use lots of veggies. I do not buy $25 worth of tomatoes a month. 36 days is not enough time to find out that you’ve made a big mistake. I’m hoping to sell mine. Even at a loss it’s better than paying and paying.

  16. Nancy  Says:

    I bought aerogarden for mother’s day. What a huge disappoint, the picture on the box is nothing like the product. It seems like false advertising. Yesterday I went out and bought some fresh herbs.

  17. randy  Says:

    Wtf who grows that in aerogarden grow dope.

  18. Cynthia  Says:

    Absolutely save your grow pods, you can sanitize them with a bleach solution and re-use them. It’s also possible to make your own labels. And peat sponges that fit the pods can be found elsewhere and cheaper than from Aerogrow. Use Aerogrow as your bulb source, and just start doing your own seeds!

    I’m currently growing Ruby Chard and Earliserve Green Beans in a couple of AG6 Elite Plus machines. I just finished harvesting Pak Choi Toy Choi out of another.

    If you need tips and help, I found a great forum for Aerogardeners, it’s Great helpful people over there. That’s where I learned about growing my own seeds and where to find less expensive supplies.

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