Aerogarden Farm Review
Whenever people come over to my place and see my Aerogarden Farm units, they immediately ask, “what’s that?!”
At this point my apartment looks a bit like a science lab so I get it, ha.
I’m fully obsessed with growing my own veggies and the Aerogarden Farm has been a gamechanger in the process!
Here’s my in-depth review of the Aerogarden Farm 12 and Aerogarden Farm 24 after several years of using them.
But first – let’s talk about hydroponic gardening.
I live in a very small apartment in New York City without any outdoor space so I don’t have much square footage to work with.
And I hate bugs.
So when I learned about hydroponics, I was intrigued.
Basically, hydroponics is the method of growing plants in water, without any soil. In the most basic set up, you plant seeds and allow the roots to slowly grow in water.
There’s no soil, so there’s no mess, and while it’s not 100% bug free, most pests come from the soil so you eliminate the vast majority of nasty critters.
(Knock on wood, I haven’t had any bugs yet)
harvesting my hydroponic bok choy + tatsoi to cook with salmon (my go-to easy 30 minute dinner)
more hydroponics + recipes on tiktok @shershegrows
Benefits of Growing Indoors
And, it’s a much faster way of gardening!
Plants grown hydroponically and fed continuous light, water and nutrients can grow 5x faster than those in soil. Plus, when you grow indoors, you improve your air quality (and your mood!)
I love waking up and walking into the kitchen seeing all the growth of my plants from the night before.
Nowadays, lots of commercial farms have built huge hydroponic gardens. They usually look like skyscrapers of white towers, or a giant greenhouse with horizontal white pipes.
For the home gardener, there are several companies that make simple, sleek indoor hydroponic units.
Aerogarden is one of the most popular (I think they’ve been doing it the longest). The company was founded in 2002 in Boulder, Colorado and eventually was acquired by Scotts Miracle Gro.
I first heard of the company when I got the Aerogarden Harvest.
I was amazed by how fast and easy it is to garden with their hydroponic models and I was immediately hooked.
Each system comes with LED lights and are pre-programmed to run on an optimal schedule, depending on what type of plants you’re growing.
You plop in the seed baskets, fill up the bowl with water and turn on the machine.
Then it basically runs on its own!
Every 2 weeks, I add plant food (included with the Aerogarden) and the systems also alert you whenever the water needs topping up.
There are a couple different Aerogarden models available:
I actually own several Aerogardens ha.
some are small enough to fit on a kitchen counter! I started with one… and now have 5! :)
Aerogarden Model Comparison
Here’s a brief overview of the differences:
|Model||# of Pods||Grow Height||LED||Price||Best for|
|Sprout||3||10″||10 watt||Check on Amazon||Herbs|
|Harvest||6||12″ – 18″||20 – 25 watts||Check on Amazon||Herbs, Lettuces|
|Bounty||9||24″||30 – 50 watts||Check on Amazon||Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplants, Cucumbers|
|Farm||12-24||24″ – 36″||60 watt||Check on Amazon||Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplants, Cucumbers|
But today’s post is all about the Aerogarden Farm!
Why Buy the Aerogarden Farm
The Aerogarden Farm is the company’s largest hydroponic units.
They’re designed to sit on the floor, and come in either a 12 pod capacity or 24 pod capacity.
Note: the 24 pod capacity is two equal sized grow bowls of 12 pods each, that sit side by side.
I started out with the small Aerogarden Harvest, which sits compactly on my kitchen counters, but eventually I wanted to grow larger plants and I also wanted to grow lots more!
So, I upgraded to the Aerogarden Farms.
Aerogarden Farm Family
There are currently 5 different types of models in the Aerogarden Farm family:
Aerogarden Farm Model Comparison
|Model||# of Pods||Grow Height||Height x Width x Depth||Price|
|Farm 12||12||24″||34″ x 18″ x 14″||Check on Amazon|
|Farm 12 XL||12||36″||46″ x 18″ x 14″||Check on Amazon|
|Farm 24 Basic||24||12″||24″ x 36″ x 14″||Check on Amazon|
|Farm 24 Plus||24||24″||34″ x 36″ x 14″||Check on Amazon|
|Farm 24 XL||24||36″||46″ x 36 ” 14″||Check on Amazon|
The main difference among them is the height capacity.
Because I think the best feature of the Farm models is their extra tall height, I recommend any of the Farms with a 24″ or 36″ grow height capacity (so not the Farm 24 Basic).
What’s Included with the Aerogarden Farm
With all the Aerogarden Farm units, you get:
- 60W LED lights
- water basin
- liquid plant food
- power adapter
- seeds (choose from tomatoes, peppers, lettuces or herbs)
The Farm comes with LED light panels that are full spectrum 60W lights.
These are quite powerful and include white, blue and red lights to ensure your plants have everything they need to grow, from the early germination stage all the way to the fruiting stage.
The stronger the LED light, the faster your plants will grow.
Larger fruiting plants require stronger lights in order to grow nicely. If the light is too weak, you’ll end up with leggy seedlings. Stronger watt lights also help the plants in their flowering and fruiting stages.
The Aerogarden Farm models are the fanciest of all of the brand’s hydroponic units.
They have a touchscreen LCD panel in the front, where you can control the machine. Use it to raise the lights up or down, adjust the light schedule, or check on the unit’s water levels.
The Farm also comes with a couple nice accessories, including
- trellis system
The plastic tubing is really helpful in emptying out your Aerogarden Farm machine. As part of your hydroponic garden maintenance, you’ll want to top up water, add plant nutrients and check on your plants’ roots.
Occasionally, you may want to empty out the grow bowl of water and the hose allows you to easily do that.
Just connect it to the water pump and set up a bucket (or place the hose into the sink). And then you can easily drain the entire Farm basin in one quick go!
The trellis system is a nice support accessory when growing larger plants.
If you’re growing any large fruiting plant, like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers or eggplants, you may find that your plants need help supporting the large fruit on top.
You can use the trellis system to do that!
I like the Farm’s trellis system, which consists of two horizontal wires that attach to the Farm legs via magnets, and two vertical wires that can be clamped at any point along the width of the unit.
Smart Device + Mobile App
It also comes with wifi, so you can sync it to Alexa or your home wifi system.
There’s even an Aerogarden app for mobile phones. If you have multiple Aerogardens, you can add them all to the app and see a snapshot of progress in one handy place.
The app also gives you reminders and tips, which is nice.
I really like the design of the Aerogarden Farm units.
They’re sleek, well made and sturdy. There’s a handy storage compartment on both sides of the top of the machine, so it can not only hold your plants but also your supplies.
And of course, the Aerogarden units can be used over and over again.
I’ve had my Farm 12 for two years now and have used it multiple times to grow everything from lettuces to Asian greens and hot peppers.
Just make sure to clean and sanitize your machine in between plantings.
In the years since I’ve had all my Aerogarden models, everything has held up very well. I haven’t had to replace any parts, knock on wood!
One fun feature of the Farm models is Vacation Mode.
If you’re someone who has to travel often for work, you’ll love this feature. Vacation Mode essentially cuts the light and water schedule to half the normal cycle, so that it keeps your plants alive even if you’re away.
I love this feature and wish all my Aerogardens had it.
It’s really come in handy over the years, since I grow everything from start to finish indoors, (but don’t want to be tied to my house all year long!)
I have a more in-depth guide on maintaining your plants while away, which you can read here.Read more: How to Keep Your Plants Alive on Vacation
What Can You Grow in the Aerogarden Farm
No need to worry about buying seeds or the right kind of hydroponic plant food.
Each Aerogarden comes with 12 or 24 seed pods (depending on which model you buy) and enough plant food to get you started for the first couple months.
For types of plants, you can choose between:
If for any reason, any of the pods don’t sprout within 21 days, Aerogarden offers a germination guarantee.
You can contact customer service and let them know if any of the plants didn’t germinate and they’ll send you a replacement.
I had to do this with some of the herbs in my first Aerogarden Harvest and it was a pretty straight forward process.
Use Your Own Seeds in the Aerogarden Farm
But, you’re not just limited to Aerogarden’s seed pods!
One of the best things about Aerogarden’s hydroponic models is you can use your own seeds and grow whatever you want.
I started off with the pre-seeded pods from Aerogarden to try out their herbs, lettuces and salad greens, and then eventually I started buying my own seeds.
I wanted to grow unique varieties of plants that I wouldn’t be able to find at the grocery store and also experiment with larger, more fun types of veggies.
Grow Your Own Kit
If you want to go this route, you’ll just need to also pick up Aerogarden’s Grow Your Own Seeds kit.
The Grow Anything kit comes with empty grow sponges and pods that you’ll use to hold your seeds.
It also includes extra plant food and dome caps.
I have a whole in-depth view on how to use your own seeds in the Aerogarden if you want a tutorial.Read more: How to Grow Anything in the Aerogarden (Use Your Own Seeds)
Here’s a video I filmed showing you how to use the Grow Anything Kit with your own seeds:
Aerogarden Farm 12XL Set Up
Setting up the Aerogarden Farm 12 was slightly more labor intensive than the smaller models, but still very doable.
I filmed the entire set up process – if you’re curious, you can watch it below or on Youtube here.
And I also filmed a review of the Farm 24 when I set that one up:
Aerogarden Farm Review
So, after all that – is it worth it?
What I like the most about Aerogarden is the systems are all-in-one.
They take care of all the difficult parts of gardening (sunlight, water, nutrients) and send you reminders when you need to add more water or plant food, so it’s like a set it and forget it system!
Before I had an Aerogarden, I was constantly killing plants and convinced I had black thumbs.
I started with a 6-pod Aerogarden Harvest and was amazed at all the things I could grow. So if you’re also unsure about your gardening skills – don’t worry.
Here are some things to consider before getting the Farm:
The main downside to the Aerogarden Farm is its price.
The Farm units run anywhere from $350-750, depending on the size and height – which I know is expensive. I recommend starting out with a small Aerogarden countertop model first, to see if you like hydroponics.
Most people start with the Harvest, since it’s compact, pretty and easy to maintain. It’s also more affordable but can yield a lot.
And the funny thing is.. most people start with one Aerogarden and get addicted!
But I think for how sleek and sophisticated they are, the price is worth it!
I’ve also re-used my Aerogardens over and over. You can continually plant new things and re-use the Farm from season to season. So over a couple years, the lifetime value is pretty good!
And I use my hydroponic units to grow things I wouldn’t be able to buy at the grocery store.
So while some people say you could save more money just buying veggies from the grocery store, I think the yield has been worth it for me.
Finally, I use non-GMO seeds and no pesticides, so I know that everything I’m eating from the Aerogardens is incredibly fresh and clean.
I’ve noticed bagged lettuces and produce from the grocery store occasionally gets recalled for salmonella and bacteria. That’s something you don’t have to worry about when you’re growing everything your own, from start to finish!
Finally, I do think the herbs and greens grown in my Aerogardens are much fresher and better quality than what I can buy at the grocery store.
I’m used to herbs and lettuces going bad or starting to wilt within days of buying it from the store. With the Aerogardens, I haven’t had that issue!
Because you’re growing indoors, the Farm lights need to be on for most of the day.
The exact light schedule depends on what you’re growing (different plants require different light duration) but on average, the lights will be on for 16 hours and off for 8 hours.
And, these LED lights are strong.
So if you live in a small, open concept space, you may find that the lights bother you.
For me, I set the Farm light schedule to run from 5am to 8pm, with a 30 minute sunrise and sunset dimmer function.
I kind of like how the lights act as a second alarm clock, especially in the winter when it’s really hard for me to wake up!
And because the lights are on during the day (I work from home), I don’t mind the light.
But if you’re extra sensitive, you may want to place the farm in a closet or room with a closed door, so you can block out the light.
Water Pump Noise
When the water pump is running, you’ll occasionally hear the sound of trickling water.
It’s a very light sound, and it doesn’t run all the time. To me, it kind of sounds like a soothing fountain in the background.
If you’re extra sensitive to noise, this may bother you. But honestly, I’ve heard much louder noises from my neighbors!
Do Aerogardens Use a Lot of Electricity?
LED lights are very efficient, so I haven’t noticed a significant change in my electricity bills. Of course, this varies depending on where you live and who your electric provider is.
But so far, it’s been a minimal addition to my utility bill.
Is the Aerogarden Farm Worth It?
Overall – yes for me the Aerogarden Farms have been well worth it.
I would never have imagined growing hot peppers, tomatoes and eggplants indoors before getting the Farms. And even if I had wanted to, I think I would have been overwhelmed!
So I love the convenience, sleek design and usability of the Aerogarden Farm models.
Is there Something Better than Aerogarden?
There are lots of companies that make indoor hydroponic models now, including:
In particular, the sleek minimalist design of Click & Grow caught my eye. They make very similar products to Aerogarden including a countertop model and a large floor model.
There’s also Lettuce Grow, which has a unique tower shaped hydroponic garden. It can be used both indoors and outdoors, which is nice for people with more space!
I’m slowly starting to try products from these other brands and will update my blog with reviews as I’ve tried things!
If you’ve tried out any hydroponic models from other brands, let me know what you thought!
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