TESTED: Aerogarden vs Click and Grow Smart Garden

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TESTED: Aerogarden vs Click and Grow Smart Garden

In the world of modern indoor gardening, two names stand out for their innovative solutions – the AeroGarden Harvest Elite and the Click and Grow Smart Garden 3.

These compact, smart indoor gardening systems have gained popularity among plant enthusiasts and beginners alike.

Growing plants, herbs, and vegetables can be quite an adventure! There are a lot of things to consider and growing plants indoors takes it up a notch. Since herbs, vegetables, and flowers are grown in an outdoor garden, trying to grow them in your home can be challenging.

Luckily, the Aerogarden and Click and Grow indoor smart garden kits really make it easy for anyone to grow their own food like leafy greens, herbs, tomatoes, and even flowers.

We tested these indoor smart gardens to explore their features, functionality, and performance to help you make an informed decision when it comes to growing herbs, vegetables, and flowers indoors.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow Features

Included in the Aerogarden kit:

  • Six plant pods with growing medium and plastic domes – Genovese Basil, Curly Parsley, Dill, Thyme, Thai Basil, and Mint
  • Plastic dome for seedlings
  • Miracle-Gro Plant Food
  • Stainless steel grow deck and bowl with water reservoir pump and fill line indicator
  • Light hood with 20-watt LED plant lights that adjust up to 12 inches grow height
  • Automatic timer for light
  • Digital display to add fertilizer and water

Aerogarden Features:

  • Grow up to 6 plants 5X faster than soil
  • 20W LED lighting systems for full spectrum, optimal lighting
  • Up to 12″ of grow height for herbs, lettuces, tomatoes & more
  • Elegant, stainless-steel finish
  • Digital display and illuminated push button controls
  • Easy, automatic reminders for water & plant food
  • Item dimensions : 6.25 x 10.5 x 17.4 inches
  • Item weight: 5.94 pounds

Included in the Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 kit

  • Smart Garden 3 with a water reservoir
  • Grow light with 16 hours on / 8 hours off cycle
  • 2 x lamp extension arms
  • Quick start guide with pro gardener tips
  • 3 x complimentary pods with smart soil and basil seeds
  • Plastic dome for seedlings

Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 Features:

  • Super compact and portable
  • Grow up to three plants at a time
  • Calibrated automated watering, light, and nutrients
  • Self-growing technology
  • LED plant lights
  • Item dimensions: 4.72″D x 11.81″W x 18.5″H
  • Item weight: 3.52 Pounds

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow design and build quality

The AeroGarden boasts a sleek and elegant design, with a stainless steel finish that complements any living space. Its compact footprint makes it suitable for countertops or tight spaces. On the other hand, the Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 sports a minimalist and modern design, featuring a durable plastic construction that exudes simplicity and functionality.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow User-Friendliness

The Aerogarden’s user-friendly interface and intuitive setup make it a great choice for beginners. The straightforward planting process involves inserting the pre-seeded pods, adding water and nutrient solution, and letting the system do the rest. Similarly, the Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 simplifies the gardening experience with its “plug-and-play” concept, making it suitable for those with little or no gardening experience.

AeroGarden vs Click and Grow hydroponic systems

These smart indoor gardens use hydroponic systems. Hydroponics is a soilless method of growing plants, where they are cultivated in a nutrient-rich water solution. The plant roots have direct access to essential minerals and nutrients in the water, allowing for faster growth and higher yields compared to traditional soil-based cultivation. This method is popular in commercial agriculture, urban farming, and indoor gardening for its efficiency and ability to optimize plant growth.

The AeroGarden utilizes a hybrid hydroponic system known as aeroponics with elements of deep water culture. In this setup, the plant roots are suspended in the air within a growing chamber. The roots are periodically misted with a nutrient-rich solution, providing the plants with essential nutrients while allowing them to access oxygen from the surrounding air.

Additionally, the roots are partially submerged in a nutrient solution reservoir, combining elements of deep water culture. This system ensures optimal plant growth by promoting faster and healthier development, eliminating the need for soil, and reducing the risk of overwatering.

Click and Grow utilizes a hydroponic system called “Smart Soil” technology. This soilless growing medium comes in pre-packaged pods that contain a specialized blend of nutrients, minerals, and pH stabilizers. The Smart Soil acts as a reservoir, delivering water and essential nutrients directly to the plant’s roots as required, creating an automated and self-sustaining environment for indoor gardening.

Users simply insert the Smart Soil pods into the planter, eliminating the need for manual watering and nutrient dosing. This user-friendly system makes indoor gardening with Click and Grow hassle-free, even for beginners.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow plant capacity

The AeroGarden can accommodate up to 6 plants at a time, offering a diverse selection of over 150 different pod varieties. This makes it ideal for small herbs, vegetables, and even flowers. Conversely, the Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 accommodates 3 plants simultaneously, offering a slightly more limited choice of plant pods but still covering popular options.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow Plant Seed Pod Options and Refills

Both brands have a lot of seed pods to choose from whether herbs, vegetables, or flowers. Though with Click and Grow they sell three plants of the same kind, so three pods of basil, three pods of flowers, three pods of tomatoes, etc. Aerogarden has sets of gourmet herbs, salad greens, or even plant pods of vegetables to make salsa. Aerogarden also offers a Grow Anything kit which is the grow sponge in a basket and you can use your own seeds.

AeroGarden Grow Anything Seed Pod Kit

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow plant pod price comparison

The Aerogarden pods start at $10.99 for three pods of herbs and go up from there depending on the number of pods and type of plant (herbs, vegetables, or flowers). There are themed herb garden kits with different kinds of plant pods sold as a set.

Click and Grow offers three pods that start at $9.95 for the same kind of plant (herbs, vegetables, or flowers).

Do Click and Grow pods work in Aerogarden?

No, the size and design of the pods are totally different. The Aerogarden uses grow sponges in plastic baskets while the Click and Grow has Smart Soil in plastic cups.

AeroGarden vs Click and Grow Plant Germination Times

The basil plants in the Aerogarden sprouted within the first week and I was able to harvest it by the third week.

AeroGarden Week 1; Photo by Marquis Matson
AeroGarden Week 3; Photo by Marquis Matson

While the basil plants in the Click and Grow sprouted during the first week and grew to the maximum height five weeks later and that’s when I made the first harvest.

Click & Grow Week 1; Photo by Marquis Matson
Click & Grow Week 3; Photo by Marquis Matson

AeroGarden vs Click and Grow Plant Yields

Basil plants grow really fast and with the Click and Grow I would let the plants grow for a month in between harvests. The plants are still growing strong six months in. A little container of basil or fresh herbs costs around $4 in the store which is about 1/3 of a harvest. So in the long run it is cheaper to grow basil in the Click and Grow Smart 3 Garden.

The Aerogarden plants – mint, Thai basil, and Italian basil – are still growing six months in, though the leaves are much smaller than the first leaves that sprouted. The parsley and thyme never sprouted so it was good that I decided to experiment and drop kale seeds in the pods. The kale’s first harvest was good with big leaves but the ones after had really small leaves. The dill was good for one harvest. If you are able to use the Aerogarden for a year or so, then it is a good investment.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow Lighting Systems

Both systems utilize energy-efficient LED lighting systems, ensuring optimal plant growth throughout all stages. The Aerogarden incorporates an adjustable light arm, providing flexibility to accommodate the growing height of your plants. It also has different options for the kinds of plants that are growing.

The Aerogarden has a better lighting system since the hood with the light is as big as the grow deck. All the plants got the same amount of light.

Aerogarden; Photo by: Marquis Matson

The Click and Grow Smart Garden 3, on the other hand, uses an automated lighting system that has a 16 hours on / 8 hours off cycle. The problem with the Click and Grow is that its lighting system is an arm with LED lights that go about 3/4 the length of the grow deck.

The last plant didn’t get as much light as the other two that were under the arm. It affected the growth rate a little bit, the taller plants were the ones under the light.

Click & Grow; Photo by: Marquis Matson

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow water and nutrients

Aerogarden uses a hydroponic system, delivering water and nutrients directly to the plant’s roots. The system includes a water tank, and users typically need to add the provided nutrient solution regularly. Its water tank is sizeable, reducing the frequency of refilling.

Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 employs a similar hydroponic approach with its unique Smart Soil pods, which come with pre-packaged nutrients to ensure hassle-free maintenance. The Smart Soil regulates the water and nutrient delivery, providing a self-sustaining environment for the plants.

It is easy to add water to the water reservoir of the smart gardens. Though I liked the water indicator of the Click and Grow better. It was easy to see that the water needed to be replenished. With the Aerogarden, you have to check the water reservoir to see if water needed to be added. In the beginning, the water tank had to be filled every couple of days but once the plants were big and tall, I had to add water every day or two.

The supplemental plant food for the Aerogarden had to be added to the water reservoir and the Aerogarden keeps track of when it is time to add plant food since a bright red button lights up.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow noise comparison

The Aerogarden watering system includes a pump in the water tank that automatically regulates the hydroponic growing experience. It turns on every so often and you can hear it. Though the noise level isn’t annoying or outright noticeable, if it is quiet in a room that’s when you’ll notice it.

The Click and Grow doesn’t have a pump so it doesn’t make any sounds.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow control and automation

One of the key selling points of both systems is their smart capabilities. The Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 makes it easy to know when to fill the water reservoir and has a grow light schedule.

The AeroGarden takes it a step further and comes with an easy-to-use control panel, allowing users to set customizable light cycles and receive reminders for water and nutrient refills. These indoor smart gardens really take out the guessing game for caring for healthy plants.

Aerogarden vs Click and Grow price range

AeroGarden systems generally fall within a higher price range due to their larger capacity and additional features. While Click and Grow systems tend to be more budget-friendly, making them an attractive option for those with limited space and a smaller budget.

Who Wins the AeroGarden vs Click and Grow Comparison?

In summary, while both Aerogarden and Click and Grow use hydroponic systems for indoor gardening, they differ in terms of design, plant capacity, seed pod selection, lighting, watering methods, control options, and pricing.

Choosing between the two depends on individual preferences, available space, desired plant selection, and budget constraints.

Both the Aerogarden and the Click and Grow offer exceptional indoor gardening experiences with their innovative features and ease of use. Choosing between the two largely depends on your specific needs and preferences.

✔️ If you have a spacious countertop and desire a wider selection of plants, the AeroGarden might be the perfect fit.

✔️On the other hand, if you want a simple hydroponic system, the Click and Grow Smart Garden 3 could be the ideal choice.

So whether you have a green thumb or not, both systems promise to bring the joy of gardening right into your home!

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