AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden 1: Week 9 – 10 Update

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden 1: Week 9 – 10 Update

After 10 weeks of growing herbs in my first AeroGarden Sprout LED, I have learned five important lessons. Including the best planting position so that faster growing herbs don’t destroy the root systems of other things planted in the same garden.

Let’s just hop right into this week’s update.

Today’s maintenance involved emptying the water reservoir and cleaning it, adding a cap-full of nutrients and refilling the reservoir, harvesting, replanting the dill and lowering the lights. Even with the added maintenance, this took less that five minutes.

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden #1 Week 9 Condition Before Harvesting Herbs

Things were not so bad at Week 9 in my first AeroGarden Sprout LED.

As shown in the picture, just like at week 8 in this Sprout LED, the lights are extended to the maximum height and it’s still not tall enough for the Genovese basil. The lights should be a few inches above the plants so they don’t burn. Once again, there were new Genovese basil buds.

There is also a bit of a problem that the lights are always too high for the curly parsley. But, it seems to be doing OK regardless. The dill isn’t producing as much as it once was, and it never produced that much to begin with. Part of that is my fault. When the dill was ready for dome-removal, I accidentally pulled out one of the young dill plants.

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden #1 Week 9 Maintenance Details

At week 9 in the first AeroGarden Sprout LED, I was able to harvest a little bit of dill, a little bit of parsley and a lot of basil.

Maintenance remained the same as ever: feed, water and harvest. There was really nothing special. That is about to change and at Week 10, I had a very good learning experience.

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden #1 Week 10 Condition Before Harvesting Herbs

My dill died and I’m probably to blame for that. But it was a great learning experience!

For the third week in a row, the lights were as high as they can go. I forgot to check on my gardens for one day during the last week. When it did check it after skipping a day, the top of the Genovese basil was burnt because it was touching the lights. It took two days to go from a few inches of room to no room.

Also, as you can see, my dill is dead. But that too is OK! It has given me valuable information for the experiment I’m currently running to figure out how to best plants, where to best plant them, and how many of each I need to sustain my pantry.

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden #1 Week 10 Maintenance Details

I added a new step to this week’s maintenance: clean the water bowl and fill it with completely fresh water and nutrients. AeroGarden recommends that you do this every 4 weeks with all your gardens, but I ignored that recommendation. I shouldn’t have.

The Genovese basil destroyed the dill’s root system.

I decided to lift the lid/planter to see what was going on for my dill to just up and die. The roots from the Genovese basil had grown around the pod of the dill, ripping off the dill’s roots in the process. As I had the plants out of the water reservoir, I took that opportunity to empty it, rinse it out, and fill it with fresh water and nutrients.

Even with this added step, it still took less than five minutes for this week’s maintenance. Once the above was done, I harvested the basil and the parsley, and replanted the dill.

I’m not sure the dill is going to grow because the root system of the basil is so massive, it’s pushing up the dill pod. I tried to move the root system towards where you fill add the water, but no joy. They kept spreading out across the entire reservoir.

Still getting bountiful harvests from the basil after 10 weeks.

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden #1 – 5 Important Lessons Learned After 10 Weeks

This is what I learned after 10 weeks of growing in my first Sprout LED:

  1. Grow the Genovese basil in the pod opening closest to the light arm.
  2. Every 4 weeks, inspect the roots, empty the contents of the reservoir and refill with fresh water and nutrients.
  3. Plant the dill in the center pod opening.
  4. I will need at minimum 2 dill plants going at once to supply me with the necessary amount of dill in my kitchen.
  5. I will only need 1 Genovese basil plant growing at a time. At 10 weeks, I have an entire small freezer bag filled with basil leaves, and that is after using it twice to make my Effin Good Chili recipe.

How I Used The Last Two Week’s Maintenance of the AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden 1 for Mental Health Gains

AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden 1 Weeks 9 and 10 journal entries.

I’ve had a pretty good couple of weeks, mental health wise. So, the journaling was more about on-going mental health maintenance than it was about using it as a grounding exercise while experiencing anxiety.

When it comes to my physical health, I’m currently really under the weather with a gastro virus plus a chest cold with fever. Journaling today helped a bit with that because it forced me to slow down and not just push through my illness. Also, it was really nice to re-affirm that even when I’m physically ill, maintaining my gardens is something that can still happen and instead of taking away spoons, it gives me an extra spoon!

Monday is Week 9 and 10 update day for my AeroGarden Sprout LED Garden #2.

If you have any questions about today’s AeroGarden maintenance, questions about using the AeroGarden for mental health benefits, or questions about AeroGarden-ing in general, please feel free to ask them in the comments!

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Jules Sherred
hello@disabledkitchenandgarden.ca

Jules Sherred is a gender noncomforming autistic disabled trans man. He has lupus with many secondary disorders, including but not limited to, psoriatic arthritis in every joint, fibromyaligia, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic migraines, and antiphospholipid syndrome -- a bleeding and clotting disorder. He also has Complex Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (C-PTSS). He has found great physical and psychological relief in Instant Pot-ting and AeroGarden-ing. After coming up empty trying to find disability resources, written by disabled people, on how to create a disability-friendly kitchen and garden that has multiple benefits, he decided to take matters in his own hands by sharing what he has learned.

2 Comments
  • Elizabeth DeJager
    Posted at 13:46h, 10 February Reply

    Wishing you a speedy recovery from the cold!

    Your giant basil looks familiar, at my house we end up with a lot of caprese salad and sprinkling basil on pasta. Trimming the roots has worked out fine for me and kept more room in the tank for the other plants and water.

    I really enjoy seeing the change over time in the pictures you post. Seeing the plants daily makes it more difficult to sense how much they really shoot up in just a few days.

    • Jules Sherred
      Posted at 15:12h, 10 February Reply

      Thanks on both the well wishes and the feedback! The day after, I did wonder if trimming the roots is possible. They do it with other plants, including trees when moving them, without ill effect. So I’m going to try that when I harvest again this week. And include it on the next update.

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