Looking around at what’s out there, when it comes to deciding on what is the best indoor garden kit, it really comes down to a choice of two. These are the Aerogarden and the Click and Grow. Why? For their simplicity and for the, generally, good reviews that they get.
It’s also a point worth noting that some of these products appear to be regularly sold out.
Putting together a complete review that covers every indoor garden kit that’s going, is almost impossible but a lot can be taken from the opinions of those that have been looking around for the best garden kit and feel that they have found it, or not.
Looking at what is the best indoor garden kit
The first thing that needs to be mentioned about managing any indoor garden kit is that you need to have a basic understanding about how things grow. If you have any knowledge at all about growing anything in a garden, whether it’s an outdoor or indoor garden, you’re off to a good start, even if you haven’t got the best indoor garden kit that’s going.
But don’t be put off if you’ve never grown anything in your life. Modern indoor garden kits have been designed for you. They are the complete package. They provide the four main conditions that any plant needs for you to get the best results, anywhere.
Modern indoor garden kits have a built-in reservoir of water that supplies the root-system of every plant that’s growing in the unit. There is no soil involved, The seeds germinate in a plug that contains a sponge material that the first roots grow into. Each seed-growing plug is covered by a small, transparent dome that allows light in but prevents dehydration.This gives each seed the best chance of developing into a productive plant.
The modern indoor garden kits are more than a window-box that takes whatever light that’s going. The garden kit unit is fitted with an almost overpowering light arrangement that provides way more light than you could ever expect from sunlight coming through a South-facing window.
- Warmth, from your room temperature.
The microclimate that you make for an indoor garden kit, will be complete by being in your own home. Most seeds will germinate and reach their best growth rate as mature plants, at room temperature. It shouldn’t be necessary to turn the heating up.
When you get a modern indoor garden kit, there will be enough nutrient material to feed your growing plants together with instructions explaining how to dose the water reservoir for best results.
The only inputs that you have to focus on are:
- Finding the best place in your home to place your indoor garden.
Modern indoor garden kits are stand-alone units that can go anywhere. All you need is an electric power supply. You may need to experiment with placing it in different locations before settling on the best place for it.
- Monitoring the progress of what you have growing and taking required action.
Setting up an indoor garden kit is the easy bit. When the plants have grown to full-maturity, you will need to monitor the, now running, kit regularly. There are indicators to show if the water level needs topping up and if the nutrient level needs raising.
- Manage your expectations. Whether you’re growing plants in an outdoor garden or using an indoor garden kit, you mustn’t expect miracles. But many people who have used these modern systems, report that plants grow faster under artificial light.
The Aerogarden review
Most people seem to agree that when it comes to making a choice, one of the best indoor garden kits, if you can get it, is the aerogarden.
At the time of looking at what’s on offer for this review, Aerogarden had, at least, six variants of the main model that are aimed at suiting a range of budgets and appear to be widely available in the USA. The largest unit being the Aerogarden ‘Farm Plus’, the smallest being the ‘The Harvest’. If you’re ready for it, see the details and specifications for the Aerogarden indoor gardening system.
For the UK and Europe, the equivalent indoor garden kit has to be The Click and Grow, see our review.
The biggest aerogrow unit in the range is the Aerogarden ‘Farm Plus’.
I could go on and on about what I think are the best points and possibly a few concerns about the Aerogarden system but, for me, the best test is to listen and take note of the comments that other people make.
It has to be said that not everyone is as excited as I, and many others, about the Aerogarden indoor garden kit. Isolated reports of some who couldn’t get anything to work and preferred to go back to doing it the old way of growing plants in soil.
The general feeling among many who have bought the system, is good and positive. Some are so pleased with their Aerogarden unit that they’ve bought another unit and, in some cases, more than one extra unit.
A regular comment that comes up is that the aerogarden system is so easy to set up. Most people had instant success. They filled the reservoir with water to the correct level, then added the required amount of nutrients which are supplied in the kit. Then they inserted the plugs that contain the seeds, made the seeds moist, covered them with the small domes and then just switched the unit on.
One user reported that she was able to extract a large enough lettuce for a salad dish, about a month after germinating the seed.
A point that many referred to was the fact that the lights were very bright. The quality of light is so good that some are finding that not only does it provide lighting for the crop growing in the aerial garden unit, it can also provide over-spill light which can be used by plants that are placed near the unit.
Some people mentioned that the light is so bright that they need to put it somewhere out of the way because the light can be very bright and overpowering. There is also a pump that can make a bit of a noise. Some people may find this irritating, it’s another reason for placing the unit away from your regular living area. Although most people seem to be quite happy to have it on a work surface in the kitchen.
A problem that many have encountered is that some of the seeds in the prepared seed pods don’t germinate. This is something that aerogarden are aware of and are prepared to replace them.
It’s important to understand exactly how these systems work. Some have mentioned that it’s important to read the instructions carefully to get a full understanding of what it is you have to do to get the best out of the aerogarden system.
For example you need to make sure that you set the lighting panel position where it needs to be. For best results the lighting panel needs to be switched on and close to the surface of the seed plugs from the moment when the seed plug is put into position.
This appears to insure the fastest and best germination possible. Thereafter you need to raise the adjustable light panel as the plant grows up but you mustn’t make the mistake that some people make, which is to raise the panel too high. Keeping the light panel close to the top of the growing plant, will help to ensure that the plant doesn’t grow too tall too quickly. It will keep the growth low and bushy.
Getting anything to grow, whether it’s out in the garden, subjected to the elements of nature or or in a high-tech system that the Aerogarden offers, will always have a few challenges. When plants start growing, wherever they are, nature will be telling them to grow just as they please.
We want them to grow as we want, to get the best result that we can. This high-tech indoor garden kit ticks most of the boxes that anyone would need, to get the best outcome and a regular supply of fresh vegetable.
Find out more about: The Aerogarden indoor gardening system
The Click and Grow review
Looking around and making notes on what people are saying about the Click and Grow indoor garden kit, there are many more positive reviews than negative.
The only gripe that surfaced among a few was that Click and Grow aren’t the fastest out of the trap when it comes to replacing seed pods that don’t germinate. They promise to do this, so it may be necessary to persist.
There are those who prefer to be independent by sowing their own seeds. This allows for some experimenting with a range of plants that best suits your own requirements.
Most people realise that here is a method of growing many different types of plants, using a system that’s largely automated. They see regular true progress as they watch their plants grow and they aren’t too bothered about where they get their seeds from. Many are amazed at the speed with which things get going having set up their ‘new-world’ indoor garden kit, having studied the easy-to-follow instructions.
The light is super bright. This is something that many were almost complaining about, but pulled up when they have to acknowledge that it’s the bright light that does the business. It’s the light that makes these indoor garden kits the success that they are.
To provide the plants with the best chance of growing to their full potential there needs to be enough light. If there is one aspect of the design that stands out it’s the ability to not only provide light but provide a specific quality of light that generates enough of the, all important, blue and red light-waves.
Out of the complete colour-spectrum that makes up white light, it’s the red and blue in the spectrum that plants need most of all. These modern indoor garden kits are designed to make sure that this happens.
Some people set the timer to only have the light on during the night, when everyone’s asleep. This way they can make the best use of the system without any bright light affecting them through the day. This seems to work well if the indoor garden kit is positioned in an area in the house where very little daylight reaches. This will provide enough of a ‘night-time’ dormant-period, during the daytime, to allow the plants to feel that it’s night-time.
Find out more at:The Click & Grow indoor gardening system
General review observations
Whenever I ask people to tell me what they think about an item or system that they’re using, what I really want to know is; what are the best parts, the worst parts and everything in between?
There will always be a spectrum of responses and views. You have to take into consideration the expectations that some people have about an item that may be, in some cases, out of reach.
When I see negative comments and reported bad experiences, these can, of course, be well founded and should be taken seriously. However, when there are extremes of views between people who feel that they’ve made the best decision in acquiring and using the item in focus and those who are wishing they’d never seen it, it’s difficult not to judge the level of knowledge and understanding that some people have.
When I make my own assessment about an item, I look at the basic requirements and consider the long-term potential or lack-of. I’m mindful of the fact that designers put considerable effort into what they do but this doesn’t always work. They will have tested the item to extremes before presenting it to the rest of us and as a result there should be a base-line value.
This leads me to ask a fundamental question which I like to throw in as a final assessment of what the feeling is about the item that has been acquired and now in use: What would you say if I were to take the item from you and you no longer had it in your life?
It comes with little hesitation from the majority who are asked that they would rather keep it, having savoured enough positive experiences from it. Most short-comings can often be ironed out by self-ingenuity that comes from learning and personal experience.
This is where I would place both the Aerogarden and Click and Grow. Once you’ve set the kit up, follow the instructions and study its performance. Learn from it and work with it. Make it part of your routine and you should have a regular supply of fresh vegetables and, possibly, fruit.
If you live in the US, it currently appears that the Aerogarden and Click and Grow systems are both readily available.
In the UK and Europe, the Click and Grow system is, currently, readily available. You may be able to get hold of the aerogarden system but there may be issues with acquiring spare parts.