The Best Plants to Grow in the AeroGarden

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Do you have an AeroGarden or a similar indoor hydroponics system and wonder what to grow in it? After over ten years of owning one, I’m sharing the best plants to grow in the AeroGarden.

Do you have an AeroGarden or a similar indoor hydroponics system and wonder what to grow in it? After over ten years of owning one, I'm sharing the best plants to grow in the AeroGarden.

The Best Plants to Grow in the AeroGarden

I’ve owned an AeroGarden (multiple ones, actually!) for over a decade now. Occasionally, I’ll post pictures of it on Facebook and am met with plenty of questions about what it is, how it works, and if it’s really worth it.

Today, I’m finally sitting down to take the time to answer your questions!

I enjoy having my Aerogarden. While I don’t typically use it in the summer when the full gardening season is happening, I use it all winter. I even call it my “happy light” because seeing the bright lights of the garden and the green plants growing underneath it makes me happy in the winter!

Just an FYI, this post is not sponsored by AeroGarden. I’m simply sharing my thoughts after using one of their gardens for over 10 years.

Keep reading to learn more about the AeroGarden and the best plants to grow in an Aerogarden in your home!

Aerogarden Lettuce

What Is an AeroGarden and How Does It Work

An AeroGarden is a small, countertop hydroponics system. It uses water and nutrients to help plants grow and mimic perfect outdoor soil growing conditions.

AeroGardens come in various sizes and have space for multiple pods or plants. My current model has space for seven plants.

The Aerogarden consists of a pump, a water holding tank, and a tray to suspend your plants in. This is topped with a grow light. Most AeroGardens also have some electronic computer system that tells you when to water them or when to add nutrients. That’s one of my favorite features!

Who Is An AeroGarden For?

AeroGardens are great for those with limited outdoor space or limited indoor lighting. They can be a great solution to having a garden in an apartment, townhome, or rental.

They are also great for those of us who want an indoor garden in the winter or want some greens or fresh herbs growing on our countertop in the kitchen.


Best Plants to Grow in the AeroGarden

The best veggies and fruits to grow in the Aerogarden do not need a pollinator or space for big roots. Some examples that you’ve tried would be:

  • Lettuce and Salad Greens (Romaine, Butterhead, and Leaf Style Lettuces work best)
  • Asian Greens
  • Tatsoi
  • Swiss Chard
  • Basil (especially Thai basil and Genovese basil)
  • Dill
  • Mint
  • Curly Parsley or Flat Parsley
  • Cilantro
  • Thyme
  • Chives
  • Strawberries (from seed)

You can also grow plants like tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, and peppers in the Aerogarden if you have one of the bigger models and know how to hand pollinate.

Can You Grow Anything in an AeroGarden?

You can’t grow everything in the AeroGarden. Plants with large roots like beets, potatoes, onions, carrots, or other root vegetables will not have enough space to develop.

Some plants have too large of systems or would need trellising to be planted, such as cucumbers and snap peas.

Other plants have too large a stem to fit into the AeroGarden pods, such as broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower.


What Flowers Do Well in the AeroGarden?

Yes, there are even flowers that grow well in the AeroGarden! If you prefer to have pretty blooms in your home instead of vegetables, you can plant flowers that do not grow too tall. Some ideas are:

  • Petunias
  • Snapdragons
  • Zinnas
  • Marigolds
  • Baby’s Breath
  • Pansies
Seed Starting in the Aerogarden

Can You Start Garden Seeds in the AeroGarden?

Yes! All you need is the Seed Starting Tray, which is sold for specific models. I have the Bounty Seed Starting tray for my model of Aerogarden, which holds 50 seedlings. It’s small but a great way to kick start growing, and you can always transplant the starts into another tray once you’ve got them going.

You could also just start seeds in the regular-size pods if the tray doesn’t fit your model.

Replacement Soil POds for Aerogarden

How to Refill Your AeroGarden Without Buying Kits

Truth be told, I never buy the pre-packaged seed pod kits to refill my AeroGarden each year. Here’s what I get instead.

I save all the plastic components from my original model (the grow domes and the baskets) from year to year. I wash them off at the end of the year and store them for next time.

You can buy the liquid plant food in bulk from Amazon here. This liter container will last a very long time! (Many years!) While I have liquid nutrients for my large outdoor hydroponics system, I have not tried them in the AeroGarden. I prefer to stick with the nutrients/liquid fertilizer that they recommend for their system.

You can also buy bulk packs of Grow Sponges here. You will use one of these as the growing medium with each pod that you plant.

I then use my own garden seeds to plant in the AeroGarden. Once you know what your AeroGarden can grow, it’s very easy to figure out which of your own garden seeds you can plant in it.

Small Aerogarden

How Often Should You Change Plants in AeroGarden?

Depending on what you are growing, you will want to change the plants in your AeroGarden every couple of months.

Many lettuces can be cut back and will come again several times before they should be removed and restarted. Other plants, like herbs, will be cut from as needed and will last a long time.

When you feel like the growth and production of your plants have slowed, you can go ahead and pull the plants and start new ones.

I typically only start new batches of plants in my AeroGarden once or twice in the winter. Once they’ve slowed their production in the spring, I pull the plants and use the Aerogarden as a seed starter.

If you use tap water to refill your AeroGarden, you may have a little buildup of minerals in the tank or around the plants. If this is the case, it may need to be cleaned a little more often.

How Often Should I Clean My AeroGarden?

The system should be cleaned each time you replace the plants.

Take all of the components apart and wipe them down or wash them out. This is especially important if your plants have grown long roots, as they can get caught up in the pump.

Make sure that you also wipe off the grow deck and the inside of the bowl/tank. This is where minerals can build up from your water.


What Is the Best Type of AeroGarden to Buy?

The best type of AeroGarden to buy is the one you will use the most!

I have the older version of the AeroGarden Bounty. I think this is a good, moderately priced model that is worth the electricity it uses for the amount of pod spaces it has.

The AeroGarden Harvest is a slightly smaller (6 pods) version that is a little bit more budget-friendly.

The AeroGarden Farm is the largest system that they have and while it’s much higher priced than the countertop AeroGarden models, it might be a good fit for you if you cannot have an outdoor garden at all.

I hope that this blog post helps shed some insight into the world of indoor hydroponics systems and “smart gardens”.

For someone who really doesn’t care much for electronics in my kitchen and generally avoids those kinds of purchases, I have to say that I’ve truly loved having my AeroGarden around for the past 10 years. It’s sat faithfully on my countertop through winters in our various homes and even in our RVs.

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Me and Kady

Merissa Alink

Merissa has been blogging about and living the simple and frugal life on Little House Living since 2009 and has internationally published 2 books on the topic. You can read about Merissa’s journey from penniless to freedom on the About Page. You can send her a message any time from the Contact Page.

This post on the Best Plants to Grow in the Aerogarden was originally posted on Little House Living in January 2024.

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  1. I need to get my Aero Garden out of the garage and plant something in it. Where we currently live we have no space for a garden and the fresh lettuce sounds like a great idea.

  2. I appreciate this post! I’ve seen ads and have been thinking about getting an Aerogarden, but wasn’t sure if I’d get enough usage out of it to make it worth the cost. That you’ve used it for a decade is encouraging!

  3. Can you grow houseplants in a garden systems during the winter, and what type please. Have no luck with tomatoes
    Thank you

  4. Thank you for your article. I have used mine off and on but am thinking of herbs this year and maybe try transplanting a strawberry from the garden. I have tried starting alpine strawberries from seed with no success. I think it is a skill and art. Getting marigolds started for the garden in the spring is a good idea and other flowers as well..nice job. Athanks a lot

    1. Thanks for that comment, Eric. I am starting alpine strawberries this year and it’s good to get a “head’s up” on the difficulty. I assumed they would be an easy grow.

  5. I have 4 Aerogardens, from the little Sprout to the larger Farm Aerogarden. I use them very much like you do, mostly in the winter and for starting plants from seeds. Sometimes I will start seeds in other containers and use the Aerogarden lights to grow the seedlings. Right now all I’m growing is lettuce and a Holy Basil plant. Really love my Aerogardens!!

  6. How often do you add nutrients? I’ve never been clear on how often to do so, and my lettuce usually looks pale and a bit wilted.

  7. I love mine. This has been the only way I have successfully grown basil..I have no idea why but it does not like AZ mountains. In the Aerogarden, my basil leaves can be the size of my palm!! I have done various herbs, catnip for the kitties, lettuce (which is great because it regrows welll) I am now going to try strawberries, because they do not do well outside here either! Thanks!

  8. Thank you for this post, it was very informative for someone who has never used one. I have been thinking of getting an aero garden and see many used ones on FB Marketplace. Do you have any advice on buying used ones?

    1. I’ve not had plants stop growing until they are done. When that’s the case I remove them and start over. Other plants like lettuces and swiss chard can continually be cut back for more harvesting.

  9. Hi Merissa. Thanks for this post. I had shelved my Aerogarden in the spring a couple of years ago partially due to the cost of the fertilizer etc. Your tips on saving are very helpful and I will be sure to purchase through your links. Time to bring it out! I haven’t heard about tatsoi before and I’m eager to try it. Oh, and are the forums open for posting? I assumed they were paused along with Frugal Fridays, but I figured I’d ask. Prayers and blessings to you and your family.