I love having fresh produce that I grow myself, but I haven’t had great luck as a gardener. Last year I bought a Click and Grow system to make growing smaller things easier.
Several times a year there are sales and during one of the sales I purchased three 9 pod systems and a shelving unit. This allows me to have 27 plants growing at a time.
The system is built around pods that are filled with a mix of soil, fertilizer, and seeds. You purchase the pods and put them in the sytem and then add water. As you start growing you put a small plastic dome over the top of the pod until it sprouts and the plant starts to touch the dome. Then you just have keep watering and doing some trimming depending on the plant.
The LED lights on the system that I have stay on for 16 hours after you plug the unit in. So I made sure to plug it in first thing in the morning when I got up and now it’s synchronized with my day. With the mix of light that it provides it may provide some of the benefits of a SAD lamp during the darker winter months and in the morning I usually don’t need to turn the lights on in the kitchen as the units provide a lot of light.
There is an app that lets you keep track of progress and gives you tips as the plants grow. You can order more pods or subscribe (at a discount) and have pods shipped to you regularly. You can change the mix of what you get for each shipment, so that allows you to try out different things.
I love having fresh herbs (especially basil) so now I’m mainly growing herbs and salad greens. The plants range in growing time from just over a month for lettuce to 3 months for things like tomatoes or peppers.
The key is to try to get the balance right for when things are growing and when they can be harvested to make sure that you always have things that you want.
The water reservoir has a simple floating cover that lets you know how much water is in each unit, so it’s very easy to see if you need to add water. If you don’t want to use the pods they sell there are “Grow Anything” pods that have the soil and fertilizer and you add your own seeds.
I try to make sure that there is always some basil and lettuce ready to harvest with other herbs and some flowers growing to provide a bit of variety. It’s no substitute for a full outdoor garden with larger plants, but for some greens and herbs it is wonderful for me. 🌱