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AeroGarden Sprout LED with Gourmet Herb Seed Pod Kit, Black Review

If you’ve ever hunted for fresh herbs at the grocery store in the middle of winter, you may end up leaving empty-handed and disappointed. Often, fresh herbs like cilantro, dill, and parsley can be hard to find in certain parts of the world, and during off-season. You can change the rules by growing your own herbs, greens, and other vegetables using the AeroGarden Sprout, a hydroponic indoor garden appliance. The great things about this small garden kitchen appliance are that it will easily fit anywhere you put it, you can grow almost anything in it, and it’s affordable. The alternative would mean buying soil, pots, grow lights, fertilizer, and remembering to water it at the right times. Also, do you know the right times? Even if you don’t have a green thumb, you can successfully grow herbs, tomatoes, lettuce, peppers, and other plants in the AeroGarden Sprout.

How You Can Use an AeroGarden Sprout in Your Home

The Sprout model is the smallest model in the AeroGarden family of hydroponic gardening units. This means that it’s more affordable than other options, but you’ll also have less space to grow herbs, vegetables, and other plants. There are plenty of ways you can use the AeroGarden Sprout in your home, whether it’s for educational purposes, for fresh herbs, or home-grown food.

Grow Herbs

While this is a low-maintenance way to garden year-round and indoors, you will have to put a little effort into it. Once you set up your Sprout aerogarden, the lights will turn on and off automatically based on the timer you set. If you need to reset it, you’ll have to unplug it and then plug it back in, which isn’t terribly convenient, but it’s a minor inconvenience. Think of an herb, any herb, and yup – you can grow it in this gardening appliance. Keep in mind that the stand only raises 10 inches, so you’ll have to trim your herbs often, but that might just mean you’ll be adding more flavor to your food every night.

Teach Kids About Gardening

If you have some little ones at home, this is a great experiment for them. They can learn the photosynthesis process, even if the sun isn’t shining outside. It’s a great supplemental science experiment, and it gets them more involved in sustainable food and the movement, if that’s important to you. Perhaps even better is that you can get your children more involved in eating the food they’ve grown, and learning how to cook with those herbs and vegetables.

Grow Your Own Flowers

You aren’t limited to herbs and lettuce if you buy an AeroGarden Sprout. If you love having fresh flowers in a vase on your dining room table, or on end tables, this is a great way to keep those vases full with colorful blooms year-round. Want bright yellow daffodils as the centerpiece for a winter dinner party? Good luck finding them in February at a flower shop. With one of these hydroponic growing units, you can pluck flowers of any kind that you grow yourself – in any month.

Use It to Sprout Seeds

One of the best ways to make use of your AeroGarden device is to sprout seeds. If you already have an outdoor garden that you’re constantly rotating with different crops, then you probably spend a fair amount of time waiting for seeds to sprout on your countertop or a windowsill. It can take a while. An AeroGarden Sprout’s lighting system and hydroponic method of growing plants can push the sprouting time into overdrive and you’ll be able to transplant your seedlings sooner than ever.

Pros

  • Quiet operation
  • Quick growth
  • Water, nutrient reminders
  • Water level window
  • Smaller than most indoor garden appliances
  • Easy to use
  • Great customer service

Cons

  • Not a lot of room for growth (up or down)
  • Lights are bright
  • Can be pricey using AeroGarden seeds

Features & Benefits

Three Pod Slots

Compared to other AeroGarden models, the Sprout is much smaller. You only get three pod slots, which only allows for three different crops, but that could be plenty for what you need. If you don’t need a large unit to grow twice or three times as many different herbs, then the Sprout will work well for you. Plus, this unit is a much more affordable way to try out a method of gardening you may have not tried before.

Hydroponic Gardening

This all-water system grows vegetables, herbs, fruits, and flowers without any messy soil or fertilizer. Even the nutrients you add to help your plants grow is a liquid formula. That means way less work for you, less cost, and faster growth than ever. Many science leaders predict that hydroponic gardening is the way of the future. So, you could be ahead of the curve with the AeroGarden Sprout.

10-watt LED System

Rain or shine, your plants should keep growing big, tall, and strong in your AeroGarden Sprout, thanks to the sophisticated LED lighting system. The 10-watt LED bulbs are bright and warm enough to simulate sunlight, which triggers the photosynthesis process. The hood of the Sprout aerogarden stand has rows of white, red, and blue lights, which all have different jobs. The white lights are like daylight, so they help your plants grow quickly. The blue bulbs are meant to promote bigger plants. And the red light helps give you more blooms and fruit. Yes, this is an electric appliance, so it’s going to draw power, but it’s not nearly as much as you might expect. The LEDs require very little energy to operate, so you shouldn’t notice much of a change in your electric bill – but your grocery bill should be lower!

Reminders

The control panel on the Sprout model is easier to use than a smartphone. Once you setup the timer, the lights automatically turn on and off to give your plants the right amount of light and warmth needed for optimal growth. When it’s time to add nutrients to the water, a light turns on to remind you. That’s about all there is to it. There are no reminders to prune or add water, so that part is on you.

Water Level Window

Although there isn’t an electronic reminder to add water, there is a water level window on the AeroGarden, which isn’t available on other models. That means you can see for yourself whether the reservoir is getting low and just add the water when you check on your plants. It’s easy enough, and it’s lower maintenance than having to water a plant every day.

Quick Growth

What you’ll notice more than anything is how quickly seeds to go sprouts and sprouts go to actual plants. Before you know it, you’ll be harvesting your own herbs, vegetables, and greens for salsa, salads, and more. Hydroponic gardening promotes quicker growth than traditional gardening, so you get to enjoy the fruits of your (very little) labor sooner.

Guaranteed Germination

The pods of seeds you get with the purchase of a Sprout aerogarden are herbs, and the types you get will vary. All of AeroGarden’s seeds are guaranteed to germinate, though. That means you’re guaranteed success, and if you notice that nothing’s happening with any of your seeds (and you’re following the instructions), you can contact customer service to get new pods.

Grow Your Own Seeds

AeroGarden offers a bunch of different types of seeds that you can try out in your AeroGarden Sprout, but they can be pricey, and the ones you want may not be available. That’s okay. You can get the kit that AeroGarden sells that allows you to grow whatever seeds you want. This may be a more economical route, or simply more convenient so you can use the seeds you already have.

Smallest Garden

If you have a tiny kitchen and you’ve hesitated buying an AeroGarden because you aren’t sure whether you have the space for it, the AeroGarden Sprout may be what you need. The footprint of this small appliance is only 5 inches wide and 11 inches deep. That’s about the size of a toaster, maybe smaller. And the highest the stand extends is up to 15.5 inches tall.

Guarantee & Warranty

You already know the seeds you get from AeroGarden are guaranteed, but your appliance is also protected. Every AeroGarden Sprout comes with a one-year warranty, which protects you from defective parts or labor. So, if you notice that your indoor garden isn’t working, or it’s not sitting quite right, you can contact customer support to get a replacement, repairs, or replacement parts. What Others Say About the Sprout It’s one thing to read what manufacturers and product testers have to say about things, but it helps to know what other customers report back. Those who have bought the AeroGarden Sprout are usually excited to share their own experience, good, bad or otherwise. Read through these key points that others have made about the small indoor gardening appliance to help you decide whether it’s right for you.

Hydroponic Gardening Results

Perhaps one of the most dramatic things about the AeroGarden Sprout is how quickly people see results. Many reported faster growth than expected, and as one person pointed out, they had lettuce growing after only a few days.

Ease of Use

Setting up the AeroGarden Sprout is literally as easy as plugging in the cord, adding the pods, water, and nutrients, and then letting it do its thing. More people reported on ease of use than any other attribute. There are no confusing menus or buttons to have to deal with, and the timer for the lights begins the moment you plug in the unit.

Reminders

You really only get one reminder with the AeroGarden Sprout: for nutrients. When it’s time to add more liquid fertilizer, a light will come on to let you know. Generally, this is about once every two weeks. The biggest complaint about this reminder is that it sometimes doesn’t work, but that’s few and far between, which means it’s likely a defect.

LED Lights

The LED lighting system is a mixed bag. It’s necessary for when you’re growing plants hydroponically and indoors because they need something to simulate the sun. With that said, your AeroGarden Sprout is simulating sun, so it’s going to be bright! So bright that it has interrupted some people’s sleep. To combat that, many users have woken up early – around 5 a.m. – to reset the timer so the light comes on at 5 a.m. and turns off at 9 p.m. Your plants need about 16 hours of light, so keep that in mind.

Water Level Window

Here’s where you’re going to have to set your own reminders to check on your AeroGarden Sprout. There’s no reminder to add water to your unit, so you’ll have to look at the window. Others have said they trust the sounds of the Sprout – if it has a gurgling noise, it needs water.

Appearance

Like other AeroGarden models, the Sprout comes in four colors: black, white, red, and teal. The unit is small and won’t take up a ton of countertop space. Plus, whatever you’re growing sort of takes over the appearance of the unit, and most people commented on how beautiful their gardens were, rather than the look of the Sprout.

Size

It’s a common reference, but Goldilocks would likely be pleased with this indoor garden unit – it’s just right. Most customers who bought the AeroGarden Sprout did so because of its smaller size, and rarely has anyone said it’s too small or too big.

Customer Service

Perhaps one of the most useful bits of information you can get from a customer review is how their experience was with customer service. AeroGarden gets mixed reviews. Many people reported having to talk to customer support to get new seeds and have had nothing but positive experiences. A handful of others wrote that they weren’t happy with how they were treated when returning a seemingly defective device, but they were in the minority.

Conclusion

An AeroGarden Sprout is one of those items that is too affordable and neat to not consider buying. Whether you use it to sprout seeds for transplanting to your outdoor garden, to grow herbs to use in everyday meals, to teach children about the miracle of plant life, or to experiment with different plants, it’s a great starter unit. The three pods give you plenty of room for a little variety, and the included gourmet herb pack gets you started right away. Be sure to choose a spot where the bright lights from the 10-watt LED lighting system won’t disturb you while you sleep, and you’ll be good to go.

About The Author

Candace Osmond

Award Winning Designer, Candace Osmond has been in the industry for over a decade. She studied Interior Decorating & Design and is also an accomplished writer and multi-published author. When she's not typing away from the comforts of her desk, Candace can be found travelling to warm destinations, tending to her garden, or enjoying the outdoor haven that is her backyard. Candace currently resides in the breathtaking Maritimes of Eastern Canada with her husband, two beautiful kids and one slobbery bulldog.

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