Aerogarden taste test!
January 5, 2009 11:01 AM   Subscribe

I live in an efficiency, and am thinking of getting an aerogarden to grow fresh vegetables and herbs. I hear they work well when it comes to growing, but I'm wondering how things taste in comparison with stuff from the supermarket.
posted by tittergrrl to Home & Garden (11 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Some people on Chowhound mention it tasting better than supermarket herbs.
posted by furtive at 11:27 AM on January 5, 2009

The herbs were very flavorful. I would agree that they were generally better than supermarket herbs, which are at least a few days to a week old. I will say that we have never gotten the chives to grow, so bear that in mind if that's a key herb for you.

The lettuces are good but somewhat lacking in body. The leaves tend to be somewhat thin. On the other hand, you can pick them right off the plant and on to your plate, which helps mitigate the lack of crispness. I wouldn't try to store them for long, though.
posted by jedicus at 11:43 AM on January 5, 2009

The cherry tomatoes were bountiful and good. I'm not a big tomato person myself, but, I liked them. I've never heard anything good about the salad greens. The herb kit grew lots of herbs - but I didn't get to use a lot of it. The basil was good.
posted by jeversol at 12:37 PM on January 5, 2009

The herbs are really nice. More tender and flavorful than what you find in a supermarket because you harvest them as you need. The cilantro was especially fragrant and made the store kind taste like parsley in comparison.

I can't say that Aerogarden herbs are better than those grown the old fashioned way, but for apartment dwellers and those who can't get the right amount of sunlight, it's a great alternative.

Not sure if it is just my environment or particular Aerogarden unit, but even my herb plants are kind of spindly. They grow tall very quickly -- some with leaves too large in comparison with the stem, causing one young plant to bend over and break below a growth point. (The first pruning for this batch isn't supposed to be due for another 2 weeks.) Not complaining though. It beats having no fresh herbs at home, plus my Aerogarden was a gift!
posted by bumblebeat at 1:33 PM on January 5, 2009 [1 favorite]

As an aside, do you have to use the Aerogarden seeds, or can you use other varieties?
posted by arimathea at 1:37 PM on January 5, 2009

the seeds come in special pods. Besides the plastic surrounding the seed, I believe the internal is very similar to Rockwool cubes (have not checked myself).

So, if you use 1 pack of seed pods, you can probably easily figure out how to create your own pods via reverse engineering. Should be easy enough to create
posted by Ryaske at 1:43 PM on January 5, 2009

......... the issue would then be which automated setting to put the seeds on for optimal growth.

everything you need to know can be found here:

To the OP...... it really depends on WHAT you are buying from your normal supper market. I.e., find out the specifics of the plants your eating, such as species of lettuce etc. Besides that, the nurtients used in the aero will not have any measurable impact on the taste.

But the FRESHNESS, that cannot be matched at your grocery store.
posted by Ryaske at 1:47 PM on January 5, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks everyone, I guess my biggest worry was I remember reading an opinion of someone who said they tasted metallic tones in their herbs, that they were terrible quality, etc. It was an Amazon review, and very much and outlier, but I thought I'd ask on here before I really take the plunge.

And thanks so much for the aerogardengrowers link!

I know they also sell a "Master Gardeners" kit which gives you empty pods and all the nutrients and stuff you need to try your own seeds and stuff for a year on their site.
posted by tittergrrl at 2:06 PM on January 5, 2009

Response by poster: Er, that would be aerogardengrowers, of course.
posted by tittergrrl at 2:07 PM on January 5, 2009

Just to chime in, my aerogarden herbs have been better than most of the supermarket ones i've gotten (standard model unit, had the original starter set, now on 'international basil')

In general, my basil grows extremely well, and I never got the chives growing, either.
posted by NikitaNikita at 6:53 PM on January 5, 2009

Yes, you can grow anything you want with the master grower kit, I got my mom one for Christmas and she loves hers.
posted by absalom at 7:16 AM on January 10, 2009

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