Looking for Miracle-Gro Aerogarden Indoor Gardens? We have reviewed the best of the lot. Find detailed information, comparison charts and recommendations for the kinds of plant that grows best on a specific Aerogarden.
If you don’t have any space constraints and looking for an Aerogarden that delivers the fastest growth, simplifies the process and gives the best environment for plants to grow, then you should go with Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Ultra LED.
However, if you are looking for a smaller and a more affordable setup, then Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Sprout Plus LED will give best results.
To choose the perfect model you need to decide what kind of plant you are majorly looking to grow. Granted these devices provide many options to the user and there are tons of seeds available, but it will eventually boil down to 2-3 categories. We have tested and reviewed all the models and narrowed down to top 5 of the best Aerogardens available for 2016. We have also sorted them to give the best recommendation according to the categories so that you can buy the one that works for your need.
Best Aerogarden for Tomatoes and Vegetables
Miracle-Gro Aerogarden Bounty – It has THE most efficient pumping action of the lot that results in greater yield and the larger footprint accommodates the naturally large tomato plants. This baby is ideal to grow fruits and vegetables all year long.
Best Aerogarden for Salad Greens
Miracle-Gro Aerogarden Ultra LED – A versatile Aerogarden it has enough reach both vertically and horizontally to accommodate the salad greens which grow up all crazy on this. The Full Spectrum lights and the revolutionary nutrient system makes the produce rich in vitamins and high in yield.
Best Aerogarden for Herbs
Miracle-Gro Aerogarden 7 LED – The smaller reach of the pole makes way for an even light for tiniest of herbs, giving them the most natural environment to grow.
The Winners – Best AeroGarden for 2016
Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Ultra LED Indoor Garden
The Ultra LED is the best value AeroGarden with plenty of room to grow salad greens. It makes full use of energy-efficient LEDs and the interactive panel just guides you through the entire harvest.
Technologically, it is only matched by the Aerogarden Bounty, but it significantly cheaper than its older brother. This makes it the ‘Best Value’ Aerogarden and the ideal choice for most buyers. Here is a bit more about it.
Full Spectrum Glow Lights
Ever Since the first Aerogarden, AeroGrow has put a lot of their efforts on the light. With the Ultra LED, they not only give you an energy-efficient solution but with smart light technology it provides an optimal environment for the plants to grow.
To understand this, you would have to understand the technicalities. This model uses 300 grow lights which combine to replicate the entire light spectrum. The white light accelerates growth, the blue light results in bigger produce and finally, the red light leads to vibrant flowers and fruit. To sum it up, these LEDs you almost replicate the natural sunlight. (Pretty Darn Impressive, isn’t it)
Secondly, the LEDs are highly energy efficient. With the smart technology they automatically turn off at night, thus saving power. The whole system consumes 36 watts of power, which will roughly cost you around $25-$30 a year. And with the produce you get, this cost is virtually paid off.
Optimal growth environment and that too at a negligible cost is what sets the Aerogarden Ultra LED apart, making it a clear winner.
Many buyers have this question, that can they operate the Aerogarden without any prior gardening experience? Well, the short answer is Yes, let us explain how.
The Ultra LED uses an interactive display panel which guides you right from the start. You just have to input what you are growing, and the machine takes care of the rest. It tells you when to add water when to add nutrients and also provides all the information regarding the harvest (like how long since the seed was planted, how long will it take to harvest, tips, etc.). Since soil is not used and AeroGardens makes use of liquid nutrients, you don’t have to worry about any mess.
We highly recommend you to browse through the manual, to get accustomed to all the features. Once you get through the advanced hydroponics, work their magic to give you a near hands-free growth.
What makes the Ultra LED stand out, is the space. It comes with seven pods which give you the ability to grow seven different kinds of plants simultaneously (which however is not recommended, practically you can easily grow 3 -4 different varieties simultaneously). The added real-estate gives plants more area to sprout, both vertically and horizontally. You can extend the pole to a height of 24” which would be more than enough for most plant varieties The width can easily accommodate the extreme growth of salads like lettuce too.
Overall, if you have a large family, the added space gives you more produce and saves a lot of time and effort (on regular pruning).
Like other Aerogardens, the overall build quality isn’t that great. Flimsy plastic is used for construction. Even though you won’t be moving around the Ultra LED, it is still prone to scratches. Secondly, the seed pod kits aren’t that cheap. You get seven kits free with the Aerogarden, but you will be buying new kits in the future (They don’t cost that much though). Finally, after about 20 months you will need to replace the LEDs.
Overall, with regard to technology it leads the pack and if budget is not an issue, then this is easily the best indoor garden you can ask for.
Miracle-Gro AeroGarden 7 LED
Another awesome product from AeroGrow, this one is also right up there in terms of innovation. Our top recommendation for growing herbs, this one is quite similar to the Aerogarden Ultra LED in functionality.
In this review, we are going to point to the major differences, and why this is the perfect choice for herbs.
The Control Panel
The major noticeable difference is the control Panel. It doesn’t feature an LCD panel for display and relies on simple buttons for functioning.
You can select the kind of seed you’ll be planting (i.e., salad greens, vegetables, herbs or flowers). It also features an LED light that indicates if you need to add water or nutrients to the device. Finally, you can set the time you want the lights to switch on.
Like the Ultra LED, we also recommend you to go through the manual, before use. After the initial setup (which takes about 10 minutes), the system works automatically.
It is slightly smaller in depth and width from the Ultra LED. It also extends to only 12” compared to the 24 inches of the Ultra. The lower extension range of the pole helps the herbs to get enough light (this avoids the plants reaching for the light, and growing up all crazy). Since the herbs don’t grow that wide, the smaller width of the AeroGarden 7 doesn’t cause any issues.
Secondly, unlike the Ultra Led it uses and air-stone to drop the nutrient water to the pods. It gets the job done, but if you need a pump, you can get Pump For Aerogarden as this can help in a faster yield.
The problem creeps in when you plant herbs with the difference in growth height. Cilantro and dill grow higher than other herbs, and this can cause the other herbs to receive less light. The other plants tend to produce more stem (than leaves) to fetch for the light. There is no direct solution to it. You need to pair taller herbs Cilantro and Dill in one plantation & Parsley and Basil in a separate plantation. It majorly boils down the herb you want the most, and you can plant more of that. (If you are like most people this won’t be a major problem. Me personally, love Oregano the most, and this what grows on my Aerogarden 7 LED.
Secondly, it is the not the quietest Aerogarden. It makes some noise, and it keeps on increasing with use. Ever heard a fish tank? Yes, this sounds like that.
To sum up, the height and the pumping action provide the optimal environment for herbs to grow. It can do well with other plants too, but our ideal recommendation would be to use it for herbs.
Miracle-Gro Aerogarden Bounty
The Bounty is the biggest and the baddest AeroGarden and is the most advanced hydroponic system that the company has to offer. With the greatest yield among all the AeroGardens, it is the best choice for growing juicy tomatoes or other vegetables.
It uses the same power rating LEDs, which are used in the Ultra LED model, but they are more efficiently spread and arranged. This helps the plants to receive greater light when their height increases. The lights are a mix of blue and red which help in more yield. The RED lights help in a greater yield of flowers and fruits, thus making this a preferred choice for growing tomatoes.
An Efficient Pumping Action
The bounty features top of line pumping action, which helps the nutrient water to spread out evenly among all the nine pods. The company claims that the Bounty has the highest yield (600%) among their entire line up. Since fruits are the last to sprout, efficient pumping action, and light system helps to speed up the process and makes sure the tomatoes that are sprouted are nutrient rich and juicy. In winters, finding juicy tomatoes can be a real pain in the A, and this is where AeroGarden Bounty comes in handiest.
In terms of size, it is exactly similar to the Ultra LED (17.25×11.25×15.24” (in dimension). It also extends up to 24” inches. This increased size helps in growing tomatoes and other vegetables, as such plants grow both high and wide.
The bounty also features a touchscreen to operate the machine, and the process is almost automated, once you push the start button. You get reminders to add nutrients and plants. The touchscreen however in our opinion is a gimmick and doesn’t add any substantial functionality.
There is nothing majorly wrong with the bounty, but there are a few nit-bits that we have. First of, it features nine different seed pods in the same area as the Ultra LED (which has 7). You will never really use all the nine pods, but if you do it creates a big mess, and the plants grow unevenly.
Secondly, this has an efficient yielding system, if you use it for growing salad greens or herbs, the result is crazy. By crazy we mean, you would have more produce than you need. This might sound stupid, but due to excess produce, you will have to do pruning on a daily basis. (This, however, depends on person to person, if you are into gardening, this baby will be right up your alley)
Finally, for this price the plastic finish is a tad disappointing.
To sum up, this machine is currently the best AeroGarden has to offer concerning technology and efficiency.
Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Sprout Plus LED
This is the best AeroGarden in their small size lineup. It is more efficient than its predecessors like Aerogarden 6 or Aerogarden Spout (Which had CFL). The full-spectrum LEDs provide a better yield. The Sprout in our opinion works best for those of you, who have space constraints or just want to get into hydroponics and don’t want to shed a lot from your pocket.
Space and LEDs
It has a tiny footprint (5 x 11 inches) and features three seed pods. The pods are aptly spaced and moreover you don’t have to use every single of them, you can simply cover the one which you don’t use with a cap.
The water (and nutrient) cabinet again is small but works for three pods. But if you plan to grow tomatoes or flowers in this, we won’t recommend going for this, as the Sprout has a much lesser yield compared to larger Aerogardens. In our tests, the Sprout LED works best for herbs (which are provided with it). The space (and the pole reach of 10”) and the light is enough for optimal growth.
The salad greens also grow well, but they grow fairly wide, and if you don’t prune they tend to go dark (as they don’t receive proper light).
The setup is fairly simple, and the model comes mostly pre-assembled. It features one big ‘light’ button which is used to control the entire function of the device. To the right of that, you have a led light which indicates when you need to add nutrients. You need to press the button for 3 seconds or so to turn off that reminder light. The same button is used to set the timer (which is used to set the On-Off time for lights). There is nothing fancy about the control panel, but it does the job, and you won’t have anything to complain.
Also, this is one of the few Aerogardens which come in two colors (black & white), so you can buy the one which suits your taste. (or blends well with your kitchen)
The major gripe we have with this machine is the noise. It gets bad with time and resembles the noise you expect from a fish tank. Also, the durability of the LEDs is a concern. AeroGarden offers you a 1-year warranty but after that, you would have to buy replacements.
Overall, this tiny package packs quite a punch, and if you wish to get into indoor gardening, this is by far the best buy under 100 bucks.
Miracle-Gro Aerogarden Extra LED
The model which is almost identical to The Ultra LED, with same dimensions and identical growth lights. The primary difference is in the control Panel and the germination settings. The Extra LED lacks in added germination settings and also features simple control panel opposed to an LED panel of the Ultra.
Again this a versatile AeroGarden and works well with all kinds of seed pods (optimal for salad greens or flowers).
The obvious issue with this is the price. At the time of the review, it costs more than the ULTRA LED, which makes no sense. The ULTRA led offers more efficient growth settings. If this price changes, we will be updating this.
Till then, if you are looking to buy the EXTRA LED we highly recommend you to go for ULTRA LED instead.
Buyers Guide to Aerogarden
Hydroponic systems have given a fresh meaning to indoor gardens, and also bridged the gap between gardening enthusiasts and the standard Billy, busy with his day to day life. Aerogrow with their revolutionary AeroGardens have bought an efficient and viable solution to grow different plants, in a hassle-free way.
But the different Aerogarden models are quite similar to each other, which makes it difficult for buyers to buy the one that’ll work best for them.
We have narrowed that down to one Major factor: “What you are majorly looking to grow”?
Now this sounds absurd because there is so much you can grow with Aerogarden. We don’t deny that, but 90% of the people tend to stick with 1 or 2 kinds of plant types.
So what are they plant types? Well, they are Salad Greens, Fruits or Vegetables and Herbs.
Pick up the plant type you intend to grow the most and pick the AeroGarden that works best for them. (We have made recommendations according to that only)