I grew basil and lettuce using this indoor smart garden, and the process was truly effortlessSeptember 23, 2020
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- Gardening is a rewarding activity, but it's not the easiest practice to master, especially when you lack the time and patience, and when there are environmental factors you can't control.
- The Click & Grow Smart Garden ($199.95) is a self-watering system that allows even the most amateur gardeners to quickly and easily grow herbs and vegetables.
- It does so without using GMOs, pesticides, insecticides, or other harmful substances, putting you in full control of the food you grow and consume.
- We tried it and were impressed with how well it worked and how truly effortless the process was.
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Though I personally don't possess a green thumb, I've always envied those who successfully nurture their plants. Traditional gardening takes skill, patience, and work, and while it pays off in beautiful and delicious results, it can be intimidating to beginners or unappealing to people with busy schedules.
What is the Click & Grow Smart Garden?
Anything that makes growing plants easier and gives me a semblance of gardening credibility is intriguing to me, so when I learned about the Click & Grow Smart Garden, I was eager, albeit a little nervous, to give it a try. The Click & Grow claims to be a zero-effort device that delivers maximum results, and after testing it, I can say that it lived up to its promises.
I tested the Click & Grow Smart Garden 9 in our office before it was closed due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. It comprises three parts — a base that holds the seed pods and water tank, an LED light strip, and arms to connect the base to the light — and I was able to set it up in our office in all of 15 minutes.
After filling the four-liter tank with water and inserting each soil capsule into a pod, I plugged the garden into an outlet. The light is pretty bright, and it runs for 16 hours on, eight hours off, so if you plan on keeping it in your bedroom, you should plug it in for the first time right after you wake up.
Review of the Click & Grow Smart Garden
My garden of green lettuce, mini tomatoes, and basil made significant progress in just two weeks:
I was impressed by how quickly the plants grew and based on their comments, so were all of my colleagues who passed by the desk and checked up on their progress every day. A combination of factors contributes to this fast, seamless growth:
- "Smart Soil" that creates the perfect environment for plants to thrive: This NASA technology-inspired soil releases nutrients in sync with the plant life cycle, keeps its own pH balanced, and employs tiny oxygen pockets to guarantee plants get ample breathing room and nutrients even when the soil is wet.
- Strong, non-wasteful LED lights: The LED light system only requires six watts of energy, which equals an extra $5 on your electricity bill annually, should you choose to keep the garden running for a year. It's a consistent and strong source of light that anyone not fortunate enough to live in the select few perpetually sunny areas of the world will appreciate. Scarce or unpredictable sunlight is a frustrating factor of gardening that we can't control, and this light system is a foolproof way to combat potential inconsistencies.
- A large, self-watering tank: You don't need to individually water each plant and wonder if you watered it too much or too little. Instead, you just pour water into the subtle opening in the corner of the base. You'll know whether to refill the tank once the water fill indicator reaches a low point. Though I didn't keep track of the exact periods of time between tank refills, I do know that it was less than I expected. Unlike with traditional plants, it was completely fine if I didn't think about the water consumption for days on end.
Thanks to these elements, I could just sit back and reap all the benefits of a sustainable food garden without even breaking a sweat. For additional support, such as how to cut or transplant your plants, the Click & Grow website is filled with helpful resources, which I visited often.
My teammates and I tried the lettuce, tomato, and basil once they were ready. They tasted delicious and fresh, and the basil in particular always came in handy when we wanted to spruce up an office lunch.
Though the Smart Garden 9 already comes with this complimentary set, more than 40 refill capsules are also available for purchase. You can choose from a wide variety of delicious herbs and vegetables, including chives, cilantro, dill, sage, oregano, parsley, thyme, kale, leaf mustard, chili pepper, and sweet pepper.
These fresh ingredients are just an arm's reach away on your kitchen countertop as you cook. Since the soil doesn't contain any harmful, unnatural substances like GMOs or pesticides — and you watched the plants grow with your own eyes — you can rest assured that these greens are better for your body than anything from a grocery store shelf.
The bottom line
The Click and Grow garden brought some greenery to our previous desk space and was a breath of fresh air every day we walked into the office. I enjoyed staying on top of its progress and it was exciting to see the plants grow over the weeks. I felt an undue amount of pride about my little plants — even though I barely had to do anything to make them grow and thrive.
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