My Click & Grow Review – (Is it Worth paying ~US$100 for?)

Click & Grow Smart Garden is a portable indoor garden that enables plants to grow 365 days a year. This “portable garden” comes complete with pods that grow individual plants, an LED light system, and a self-watering mechanism that ensures your plants stay watered for 2-4 weeks. 🙂

The higher-end version (Click & Grow Smart Garden 9) allows you to change and set daily LED light schedules remotely through an app.

If you’re contemplating buying a Click & Grow Smart Garden, read on for my review!

Review Summary

(You can use my Click & Grow discount code: GARDENINGCOLLECTIVE. For a limited time this discount code gets you 25% off instead of the usual 10%.)

What I enjoyed:

Easy set up, low maintenance & ultimate convenience

The Smart Garden comes complete with overhead lights tailored for growing indoor plants and a self-watering system that makes growing plants extremely easy. I have the Smart Garden 9 Plus, which allows you to download an app to fix a schedule for when lights turn off and on (recommended 12-18 hours a day). In my experience, it scores serious points on convenience.

Also, plants come in “plant pods” which are essentially pre-packaged seeds in a cup of soil mix (Smart Soil) that slots neatly into the Smart Garden. There is no need for you to buy soil separately – and fertilizer is not needed either as the Smart Soil contains slow-release nutrients. Bam!

Fast-growing herbs & veggies, taking 5-10 weeks from seeds to harvest

Click & Grow utilizes LED technology that “focuses” the light onto the growing plants, enabling them to grow ~30% faster. This means you are ready to harvest in 5-10 weeks.

Here’s my progression after 5 weeks 🙂 The basil grew so quickly! Pics were taken after the 2nd, 3rd and 4th week.

Grow literally anywhere

You can grow your plant in a dark cellar. You can grow herbs in the dead of winter. It’s great. Ours is sitting pretty on a bookshelf. 🙂

My first basil harvest! Remember to snip just 1/4 of an inch above the node. We chopped this up and added it to our spaghetti bolognese 🙂

The Downsides:

High Cost 🙁

Far and away, the biggest downside is the cost.

The upfront costs are quite high, starting at ~US$100 for the Smart Garden 3 (3 plant pods); and ~US$230 and $290 for Smart Garden 9 (9 plant pods) and 9 Pro. (The Pro version has an app that allows you to set the lighting schedule automatically.)

In terms of ongoing costs, you’ll have to keep buying Click & Grow plant pods (~US$1-4/pod) when your plant comes to the end of its natural life.

This is typically every 4 months, so on a yearly basis you’d need to pay an additional ~$18 for a Smart Garden 3, and ~$54 for a Smart Garden 9, assuming you purchase pods for ~$2/pod.

Would I recommend buying this?

Would I recommend buying this? YES, I do recommend it IF you use herbs and veggies to make salads or home-cooked meals. 🙂 I think the premium that you pay is worth it if you prioritize having fresh herbs and vegetables.

I can’t fault the Smart Garden for its convenience and simplicity. No need to fuss over watering levels or plant care. The herbs I planted (Basil, Mini Tomato, Rosemary) grew very quickly due to optimal lighting (especially the basil!). That’s where the optimal lighting makes a difference and ensures a fast-growing plant for your needs.

However, there are situations where I wouldn’t recommend Click & Grow.

Firstly, if you are looking to start an indoor garden to grow flowers. I find that the width of the plant pods are just too small for most flowering plants. They cannot develop extensive root systems they would in a bigger pot.

This limits the growth of flowing plants… and, ultimately, the number of blooms you can enjoy. If you’re looking to grow flowers, do it in a terracotta pot instead.

The second situation I wouldn’t recommend Click & Grow is if you’re on a tight budget. I’ll be honest – this is a luxury item. Do you need it? No. But it’s superbly convenient and fun.

Hacks to reduce the cost of the Smart Garden

Given that the high cost of the Smart Garden may be a concern, one hack I’ve tried is after 2-3 months, to replant the plant pod into another container outside the Smart Garden. The Smart Garden is great for germinating and growing seeds, but typically after a couple of months the size of the plant becomes limited by the pod volume, and can get rootbound after several months and basically stop growing as there’s not enough nutrients.

By re-planting into a bigger container, you encourage the plants to grow to their maximum capacity, giving you much more bang for buck!

If you’re happy to use the Click & Grow as a germination garden, then it’s easier to justify the cost.

Another hack is to buy the seeds in bulk, and if you can, wait till they are on sale – which is the usual sale period around major holidays.

(You can use my Click & Grow discount code: GARDENINGCOLLECTIVE. For a limited time this discount code gets you 25% off instead of the usual 10%.)

I also think it’s a really fun way to introduce kids to indoor gardening. Because it’s so fuss-free and simple to set up, you’re almost always going to be successful in growing your chosen herbs and veggies. It’s a fun little project to do with your kids on the weekend, and a good way to segway into conversations about nature and sustainability. 🙂

In the next sections I cover off common questions regarding how Click & Grow Smart Gardens work 🙂

How does watering work?

There is a tank in the Smart Garden that needs to be refilled once every 2-3 weeks, depending on evaporation rates. If you live in a hot climate, this may be closer to 2 weeks… but in winter this could be closer to a month.

When refilling, I like using a high-volume bottle or watering can to pour water into the tank. You’ll know the tank is full when the bobble (which floats on the water line) stays flush with the top of the Smart Garden.

Also, any kind of tap water will do. You do not need to use distilled water.

The way watering works for individual pods is that plant pods draw water from the tank using special wicks. This happens passively (automatically) when the soil is dry, so the only thing you need to worry about is re-filling the tank every couple of weeks. 😉

How does lighting work?

The Smart Garden uses LED lights with specially developed “lenses” that allow the light to focus on your plant, while dissipating minimal light to the surrounding. This increases the efficiency of the light.

It is estimated that plants grow ~30% faster with the Smart Garden compared to other indoor gardens.

How does the soil work?

Smart Soil is made out of leftover coconut coir and some peat. It contains all the nutrients your plant needs to grow well, so there’s no need to supplement this with fertilizers or other soil mixes. The Smart Soil is also pesticide-free.

What’s great is that the Smart Soil comes neatly pre-packaged in a little cup, so there’s no need to get your fingers (too) dirty when setting up your Smart Garden.

What do I need to know about maintenance?

Other than setting your LED schedule (if you have the Smart Garden 9 Pro) and refilling the tank, there’s really no maintenance to do. This is the convenience you are paying for 🙂

How do I set up my Click & Grow?

Honestly – it’s easy. Here’s what you get in the box. You literally slot on the overhead lights, fill the tank, put the seed pods into each slot and connect it to your electrical socket. That’s it. 🙂

What’s the difference between the different Smart Garden types?

Smart Garden 3

This has 3 plant pods and is the smallest Smart Garden. It has the self-watering tank.

Smart Garden 9

This has 9 plant pods instead of 3. It also has upgraded LED lights.

Because of its higher quality LED lights, the SG9 is most suited to growing fruits like strawberries, sweet pepper (capsicums), chillis, tomatoes, and dwarf peas.

Smart Garden 9 Pro

The Pro has all the same features as the SG9, but with the addition of a mobile app that allows you to set a lighting schedule, which turns the lights on and off everyday at set timings. The LED light can also be activated through touch, by running your hand over the length of the LED lights.

Smart Garden 27

The Smart Garden 27 has, you guessed, it, 27 plant pods! It consists of three Smart Garden 9’s, which are stacked on top of each other on a wooden stand.

This is perfect for families looking for serious veggie yields. You can grow plants in rotation, such that there’s always veggies ready for harvesting 🙂

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if my Plant Pod doesn’t sprout?

In the event that your plant pod doesn’t sprout, you can exchange your pod for a new one with Click & Grow.

I’m living in a cold climate. Will Click & Grow work for me?

Yes – but do check which plant pods do best in cooler temperatures.

If you’re keen to give Click & Grow a try, use discount code GARDENENINGCOLLECTIVE for a 10% discount.

Related articles:

If you’re a newbie gardener and are looking for some beginner-friendly plants, here are a couple you could check out:

  • Hoya Heuschkeliana – an easy-to-grow vining Hoya that is relatively pest and disease-resistant.
  • Philodendron Gloriosum – one of my personal favorites. 🙂 an easy-growing aroid with heart-shaped leaves and stunning white veins.
  • Watermelon Peperomia – a small houseplant with teardrop-shaped leaves that resemble uncut watermelons!

Some common care basics:

Deborah

Deborah is a plant enthusiast and founder of Gardening Collective.