Is the Aerogarden Harvest 2.0 an Upgrade?

 

 

Aerogarden Harvest 2.0

Aerogarden recently launched a brand new hydroponic garden – the Harvest 2.0.

It feels like ages since they’ve created a new indoor garden (they’ve mostly focused on new product avenues, like a micro greens, indoor plant lights, houseplants etc), so I was really excited by the launch!

The Harvest was the first indoor garden I ever got, and it’s the one I always recommend to beginners.

So when I heard the company had created a redesigned version, I was really curious.

 

Aerogarden Harvest Discount Code

Use coupon code SSGHarvest2 for 20% off the Harvest 2.0

 

 

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But then I watched the promo video for the new Harvest 2.0 and… honestly I was a bit confused.

The new 2.0 garden has a number of design changes that felt like a downgrade as opposed to an upgrade.

(And judging from comments on social media, it seems I’m not the only one thinking this way.)

Still, I decided to give it a go.

Aerogarden reached out to see if I wanted to test a unit and I figured I should at least try out the unit before judging!

 

 

harvest-vs-harvest-2.0

 

So, today’s post is a complete look at the new Harvest 2.0 from Aerogarden.

Specifically, the Harvest 2.0 design changes, how it compares to the original Harvest and whether I think it’s truly an improved hydroponic garden!

 

Quickly jump to:

 

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Aerogarden Models

First – if you’re not familiar with Aerogarden, the company has 4 main types of indoor gardens.

Aerogarden-models

The main difference is their size and plant capacity.

From smallest to largest, they are:

Whenever anyone asks which garden to get as their first foray into indoor gardening, I always recommend the Harvest.

It’s cute, compact and holds up to 6 plants.

 

 

Aerogarden Harvest

The size makes it perfect to grow herbs, lettuces and greens (beginner friendly plants) and it fits neatly onto kitchen counters (even in the smallest of apartments!)

And, because it’s the company’s best-selling garden, they’ve released it in all different shapes.

I’m partial to the classic square-ish design but it also comes in a slim rectangular option and a round circular option.

Plus, it comes in a ton of colors and finishes (black, white, stainless steel, grey, pink and pistachio green)!

They release new colors every so often too.

I also think the Harvest’s price point hits the sweet spot – the standard Harvest retails for ~$89.95 msrp but can often be found on sale for $70-80.

 

 

Aerogarden Discount Code

Use coupon code SSG15 for 15% off any order of $50+

 

 

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Aerogarden Harvest 2.0

The redesigned Harvest 2.0 is available in 2 colors.

Here’s what came with the garden:

  • non-GMO seeds
  • 4 plant spacers
  • 6 grow baskets
  • 6 grow sponges
  • 6 grow labels
  • Liquid plant food

 

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Unboxing + Set Up

Aerogarden Harvest 2.0: is it really an upgrade?

 

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Design Differences

The Harvest 2.0 features several design changes.

While it has the same 6-pod functionality of the original, the 2.0 features a different

Here’s a deeper dive into the differences…

 

 

Harvest vs Harvest 2.0

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Grow Deck

harvest-vs-harvest-2.0-grow-deck

 

Some people reported issues with algae growth, so Aerogarden redesigned the grow deck to be a thicker piece of all black plastic.

The dark color better filters out light and has reinforced rings around each grow port.

It’s also easier to clean, as it’s made from just one piece of thicker plastic.

With the old Harvest, you would have to pry apart the two pieces to clean it (which always killed my fingernails).

 

 

However, it seems like the Harvest 2.0 grow deck doesn’t pump water to the top of each grow port like the other Aerogarden gardens.

I’m also a little surprised that the bumpers seem to affect the way the pods sit in the grow deck.

Instead of sitting flush with the surface of the garden, each pod sticks up a couple centimeters.

I don’t mind it too much, because often I spill water on the grow deck when I’m refilling the bowl. Keeping the pods raised slightly prevents water from flooding each plant and making the leaves waterlogged.

But from a visual standpoint, it seems a slightly odd choice.

 

 

harvest-2.0-grow-deck

pod baskets don’t quite sit flush on the new Harvest 2.0 deck

 

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Light

harvest-vs-harvest-2.0-LED-light-difference

 

Aerogarden completely redesigned the light.

The Harvest 2.0 features a 15W light panel with full spectrum lights.

The lights are meant to be dimmer, to be easier on the eyes, but personally I prefer the old Harvest models, which had a 20W light.

 

 

What’s nice about the new light design though, is it’s fully detachable.

The light panel and height extender completely separate from the machine, into 3 distinct pieces, so the overall garden is much easier to disassemble and clean.

Since I broke my old Harvest by accidentally submerging the base in water, that’s good news to me!

I shouldn’t have any issues breaking this new 2.0…

 

 

harvest-vs-harvest-2.0-base-and-light

the old Harvest light is attached to the base, while the Harvest 2.0 separates

 

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Pump

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The pump was also changed in the Harvest 2.0.

It’s been modified to be the same pump that’s found in the Sprout models.

I assume the original pump is stronger (since it’s the same style pump in all of the company’s gardens except the Sprout, so unfortunately this change isn’t a good one.

But, so far I’ve been growing eggplants in the Harvest 2.0 and haven’t seen any difference in plant size or growth with the new pump!

 

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Display

harvest-vs-harvest-2.0

 

The Harvest 2.0 is designed to be sleek and minimalist.

Whereas the original Harvest sat on a base, with 3 buttons (an on/off control, water reminder and nutrition reminder), the Harvest 2.0 doesn’t sit on a platform.

 

 

The grow bowl has been modified to include a nutrition reminder on the bottom.

The power button is on top, on the light panel. You can press it to turn the light on or off, and the light gradually dims.

There’s also no water reminder button.

But, in the event the garden is low on water, the pump will automatically shut off and the light will turn off.

My favorite Harvests are the Harvest Elites, which has a digital LCD screen so you can set the light schedule.

 

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From Pods to Seed Starting Kit

 harvest-2.0-seed-packet

The Harvest 2.0 is the first garden to veer away from Aerogarden’s pre-seeded pods.

Instead, it comes with a seed packet (mine came with black seeded simpson lettuce) so you can start seeds yourself.

I actually love this change.

 

 

harvest-2.0-seed-starting-system

 

Before, with the pre-seeded pods, you only got 6 pods (1 per grow space).

The seed packet comes with a lot of seeds so there’s more than enough for successive rounds of planting!

I got at least 30+ black seeded simpson lettuce seeds in my little packet.

To start seeds, you place the grow baskets in the garden, add the sponges and then drop in a seed (or two) into each sponge.

For some reason, the Harvest 2.0 doesn’t come with grow domes, but I always save mine so I had extra to use.

 

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Is the Harvest 2.0 an Upgrade?

Unfortunately, I wouldn’t say the Harvest 2.0 is an upgrade...

In fact, I have to wonder why Aerogarden chose the product name it did. It seems like a mismanaged launch strategy, because the name implies one set of expectations but the product features present a different reality.

And there’s nothing worse than disappointing longtime customers and giving off the impression that a company is sacrificing quality.

BUT I don’t think the Harvest 2.0 should be written off altogether!

In fact, I think there’s a great market for the Harvest 2.0… at the right price point.

 

 

The pricing is actually the most perplexing part of the product launch.

The Harvest 2.0 retails for $89.95 msrp – the same price as the original Harvest.

Without any sales or discounts, I would opt for the classic Harvest. The stronger 20 W lights and water reminder option make it the better buy, if both are priced equally.

Even odder, because the company runs frequent sales, models like the Harvest slim are (at the time of this writing) even cheaper than the 2.0 ($79.95 vs $89.95).

So you’d be silly to buy the lower quality 2.0 garden over the classic Harvest!

 

 

I suspect that Aerogarden was aiming to release the Harvest 2.0 as an in-house option that would compete with Amazon alternative gardens, like the Ahopegarden, Honche, iDOO and Letpot.

There are so many ‘knock-off’ indoor gardens on Amazon that compete directly with the Harvest but cost a fraction of the price.

I suspect the Harvest 2.0 will frequently go on sale in the $50-70 range so that Aerogarden can entice consumers who would otherwise opt for cheaper alternatives.

And, if the pricing is right, I’d opt for the Harvest 2.0 vs. the Amazon indoor gardens!

 

 

I have several affordable Amazon indoor gardens, and I do like them.

I bought them because I wanted to rapidly expand my indoor growing abilities at a reasonable price point.

I use them mainly to grow easy-to-grow plants like bok choy, lettuce and herbs.

But my main issue with knockoff brands is the lack of customer support, lower wattage LED light, lighter builds and small, side water hole openings.

So at the sub-$70 price, I’d prefer the Harvest 2.0 instead of an Amazon alternative like the Ahopegarden.

Let’s wait and see how much the Harvest 2.0 will go for on sale!

 

 

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