The most straightforward way to start with hydroponics is by selecting the best hydroponic grow kit for your needs.
But, choosing the right kit can be quite a challenge due to all the factors you must consider.
That’s why in this article we discuss more than just the best hydroponics kits on the market.
We also discuss the importance of the type and number of plants you will grow, whether you will grow indoors or outdoors, and several other important considerations to make before picking a grow kit.
Look through our Buying Tips section and explore the best kits available before diving into our full Buying Guide and Growing Tips sections. Enjoy!
Buying Tips for the Best Hydroponic System Kits
When it comes to selecting the right hydroponic grow kit for your needs, there are several important factors to keep in mind.
These buying tips will help you make an informed decision and ensure that you choose the best hydroponic grow kit for successful indoor gardening:
- Available Space: Evaluate the space you have available for your hydroponic setup. Whether it’s a countertop, shelf, or larger area, choosing a kit that fits your space will contribute to a seamless integration with your indoor environment.
- Plant Variety: Consider the types of plants you intend to grow. Some hydroponic kits are better suited for specific plants, so make sure the kit you choose is compatible with the crops you’re interested in cultivating.
- Kit Type: Hydroponic grow kits come in various types, such as countertop kits, ladder-type kits, grow towers, and more. Each type has its advantages, allows you to grow different plants, and may be better suited for certain settings or plant sizes. Choose a kit type that aligns with your gardening goals.
- Skill Level: Assess your experience level with hydroponic gardening. Some kits are designed for beginners and come with detailed instructions while others offer more advanced features for experienced gardeners. Pick a kit that matches your skill level.
- Budget: Determine your budget range for a hydroponic grow kit. Prices can vary widely based on features, size, and brand. Finding a kit that offers a balance between quality and affordability is key.
- Lighting: Adequate lighting is crucial for successful hydroponic growth. Some kits come with grow lights built in while others require you to provide your own. Ensure that the kit’s lighting is suitable for the plants you want to grow and the available light in your indoor space.
- Watering System: Different types of hydroponic systems use different methods to deliver water and nutrients to plants. Research the watering system of the kit you’re considering to ensure it aligns with the needs of your plants and your desired level of involvement.
- Maintenance: Consider the maintenance requirements of the kit. Some systems are self-contained water circulation systems and require minimal maintenance while others may need more regular attention. Choose a kit that matches the amount of time you’re willing to invest in upkeep.
- Expansion Options: If you’re planning to expand your hydroponic setup in the future, look for kits that offer scalability. Some kits can be easily expanded by adding additional components or units.
- Reviews and Ratings: Before making a purchase, read customer and user reviews and ratings for the specific hydroponic grow kit you’re interested in. Real-world experiences can provide valuable insights into the kit’s performance, durability, and ease of use.
Best Hydroponic Grow Kits Compared
Best Hydroponic Kit Overall: LAPOND Hydroponic Garden
- Plant Capacity: 108
- Size: 37.8″ x 19.7″ x 41.4″; 26.9 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Both
- Why It Beats the Competition: Built by a trusted manufacturer and with countless systems in use around the world, this ebb-and-flow NFT hybrid hydroponic garden’s quality and diversity speak for themselves.
- Best for Growing: Herbs, leafy vegetables, small root vegetables, and flowers
The system consists of 108 grow sites set in food-grade PVC-U and works under lights or outdoors under the sun.
With at least four hours of light each day, the system grows crops within 30 to 60 days like clockwork.
The unit features a timer that is programmable. The timer has 5, 15, and 30-minute on-time options and 30, 60, and 120-minute off-time options.
The hydroponic system is built to work in unison with a 15 to 20-liter reservoir, which you need to furnish yourself.
It’s a high-quality product, and the manufacturer provides a 1-year warranty with the purchase.
Hydroponic holder, planting pipes, 12V water pump, timer, net pots, sponges, tweezers, hose, and instructions are included with this hydroponic grow kit.
Best Plants To Grow With LAPOND Hydroponic Garden
Built with a focus on small and fast-growing crops, this hydroponic system works best with leafy vegetables, flowers, herbs, and small root vegetables.
Celery, garlic, strawberries, lettuce, most other greens, and small houseplants are highly recommended to grow.
- Grows multiple types of plants.
- Has three layers of pipes and grow sites.
- Available in 7 sizes/varieties.
- No experience necessary.
- Easy to set up.
- Not for large root vegetables.
- Nutrients and lights not included.
- You need to supply your own reservoir.
Best Hydroponic Kit for Beginners: Aerogarden Harvest Indoor Garden
- Plant Capacity: 6
- Size: 11″ x 8″ x 15″; 5.44 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Indoor
- Why It Beats the Competition: For indoor hydroponics, few systems come with all of the equipment and accessories offered by this unit, including lights, timer, smart control panel, and more.
- Best for Growing: Herbs, leafy vegetables, small houseplants
The Aerogarden Harvest Indoor Garden is one of the hottest indoor hydroponic systems currently on the market and for good reason.
The system includes everything needed to grow six plants up to 12 inches tall, which is perfect for most leafy veggies, flowers, and herbs.
Pre-made, this indoor hydroponic grower comes with a hinged 20-watt LED lighting system that is extendable and a smart control panel.
Further, no soil is required, and there is no mess involved.
As far as plant-to-plate goes, no system offers a better solution or easier-to-use platform.
It comes with automatic on and off settings programmed and even reminds you when to add water and nutrients.
Best Plants To Grow With Aerogarden Harvest Indoor Garden
The Aerogarden Harvest Indoor Garden is geared toward growing herbs and other small and leafy vegetables that can be grown and served straight to the plate.
- Several seed kits available.
- Extremely well made.
- LED lights included.
- Useable all year round.
- Comes with nutrients.
- Not for outdoors.
- Only grows 6 small plants.
- Splashed water can ruin lights.
Best Hydroponic Tower Garden Kit: Nutrabinns Tower Grow System
- Plant Capacity: 48
- Size: 27″ x 27″ x 14″; 27.8 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Both
- Why It Beats the Competition: This tower grow system is programmable, easy to use, highly efficient with power and water, stackable, and expandable.
- Best for Growing: Tomatoes, strawberries, herbs
It features 48 grow sites, though other sizes/variations are available with a higher number of sites.
The system boasts 66% less energy use, 95% less water, and 40% larger and healthier yields per grow.
If used indoors, the system is designed for all-year use. Outside, you’ll get in more crops than traditional gardening techniques.
Further, you can expand this system with extra towers at any point if you so choose to do so.
Best Plants To Grow With Nutrabinns Tower Grow System
Nutrabinns’ tower grower is made for cultivating fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers.
Among the most popular to grow with it are tomatoes, basil, mint, parsley, seasonal flowers, and strawberries.
- Stackable design.
- Lab-tested product.
- Energy and water-efficient.
- Programmable and easy to use/control.
- Lights not included.
- Nutrient solution not included.
- Expensive compared to others.
Best Ladder-Style Hydroponic Kit: INTBUYING Hydroponic Ladder Grow Kit
- Plant Capacity: 36
- Size: 31.89″ x 8.66″ x 6.69″; 11.36 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Both
- Why It Beats the Competition: This streamlined unit features more grow sites than other systems of comparable size and requires absolutely no experience to get started.
- Best for Growing: Herbs, melons, berries, and various vegetables
The Intbuying Hydroponic Ladder Grow Kit features a streamlined design that’s sure to impress beginners and experts alike.
The system doesn’t just grow food; it also purifies the air if used indoors. It’s also automatic if you hook a timer up with it.
Great for beginners, the system comes with all of the essentials to get started with outdoor and indoor hydroponics.
It features sturdy holders for the pipes that house its 36 grow sites, sponges, a powerful 110V water pump, and hose.
The unit is made to produce food every 30 to 60 days depending on what crops you cultivate with it.
The system is also quick and easy to erect and start operating. For indoor use, you must supply grow lights and a timer if you want one.
Best Plants To Grow With Intbuying Hydroponic Ladder Grow Kit
This hydroponic ladder grow kit is designed for growing herbs, flowers, and vegetables.
Some of the most highly recommended crops to try with it include melons, cucumbers, berries, lettuce, beets, and your favorite flowers.
- Food-grade PVC-U design.
- Easy to construct, snaps together.
- Tight connections.
- Several sizes/variations available.
- Doesn’t come with a timer, lights, or reservoir.
- You need to supply your own nutrients, seeds, and growing medium.
Best Table-Style Hydroponic Kit: DreamJoy Hydroponic Grow Kit
- Plant Capacity: 72
- Size: 39.4″ x 38.2″ x 25.6″; 24 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Both
- Why It Beats the Competition: With 72 grow sites, holder, pipes, pump, sponge, and hose, you get all the basics of a great ebb-and-flow hydroponic growing system at an affordable price.
- Best for Growing: Herbs, flowers, and leafy vegetables
The DreamJoy Hydroponic Grow Kit is a lightweight ebb-and-flow system that consists of eight food-grade PVC-U pipes with 72 grow sites total.
The one-level design is sleek and potent, geared for high yields and super-fast growth.
The system is the perfect start to a first ebb-and-flow hydroponic garden or an expansion to an already existing one.
A diverse build, it works just as well inside as it does outdoors. That said, if you want to use it indoors, you’ll need to furnish your own lights.
The contents of the kit include everything needed to get going: pipes, holder, 100V water pump, sponge for planting, grow sites, and a 5.25-foot hose.
You’ll need to purchase nutrients and growing medium, however.
Best Plants To Grow With DreamJoy Hydroponic Grow Kit
This hydroponic grow kit is geared toward growing smaller and leafy vegetables like lettuce, spinach, kale, and more.
It also works well for many species of flowers and herbs as well. A few highly suggested crops to try with this unit include cabbage, tomatoes, flowers, and celery.
- No experience needed for setting up or using.
- Great for both inside and outside growing.
- Fits practically anywhere.
- Perfect for herbs and leafy veggies.
- Doesn’t come with extras like seeds of nutrients.
- You need to supply your own reservoir and timer(s).
Best Indoor Vertical Hydroponic Growing System Kit: Aerospring Growing System
- Plant Capacity: 27
- Size: 20″ x 26″ x 24″; 63.6 lbs
- Indoor or Outdoor: Indoor
- Why It Beats the Competition: This system is completely self-contained and includes high-end features like smart timer, quiet exhaust, full-spectrum lights, and silent pump.
- Best for Growing: Fruits, vegetables, flowers, herbs, and houseplants
A truly superior aquaponics garden, the Aerospring Growing System features some of the highest-quality components possible as well as a unique hexagonal shape.
The system includes everything needed to get started with your garden with little effort.
The kit comes with six full-spectrum 23W foldable LED lights, a silent bump, super-quiet fan for exhaust, and an in-built 20-gallon reservoir. There are 27 grow sites as well.
An aeroponics system, the unit is built for indoor use and fits well in any corner or elsewhere.
If you’re looking for a totally self-contained system that takes very little effort to set up and operate, this could be the one for you.
Best Plants To Grow With Aerospring Growing System
This aeroponic system is designed for fruits, vegetables, flowers, and herbs. Some of the most popular plants to grow with it are strawberries, tomatoes, lettuce, mint, and more.
- Includes full-spectrum LED lights.
- Built into a grow tent.
- No tools are needed for assembly.
- Excellent customer support.
- Only for indoor use.
- No seeds included.
- Heavy compared to other systems.
- Uses more power than some alternatives.
Best Single Bucket Hydroponic Kit: Atwater Hydropod
- Plant Capacity: 1
- Size: 12″ x 12″ x 15″; 7.5 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Both
- Why It Beats the Competition: A complete hydroponic system, this hydropod comes with everything you could possibly need to get started if you plan on growing outside.
- Best for Growing: Almost any common garden crop
The Atwater Hydropod features everything needed to start growing right away, minus lights.
The system is proven to be extremely efficient at growing veggies, fruits, and just about anything else you’d be interested in cultivating.
It only has one grow site, but the mesh insert is 8-inches wide for much more flexibility in what you can grow.
A pH testing kit and adjusters are also included with this high-end but simple-to-set-up-and-use hydroponic system.
Best Plants To Grow With Atwater Hydropod
This DWC and top feed combination system is designed for growing nearly anything that can be grown in soil.
That includes large root crops, small leafy vegetables, flowers, and herbs of all sorts as well as houseplants and clones.
- Works inside and outside.
- Affordable and high quality.
- Grows practically anything.
- Nutrients are included.
- Only one grow site.
- Doesn’t include lights or seeds.
Best Multi-Bucket Hydroponic Kit: Hydrofarm Root Spa
- Plant Capacity: 8
- Size: 40.2″ x 12.8″ x 12.5″; 28.3 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Both
- Why It Beats the Competition: A bare-bones system at a more than affordable price, this system can easily be customized with additional purchases and turned into a professional hydroponic garden.
- Best for Growing: Small, medium, and large plants as well as miniature fruit trees
The Hydrofarm Root Spa comes with eight 5-gallon lidded buckets connected with air hoses and a powerful water pump.
The reservoirs are water-tight sealed and come with a guarantee that they will never leak.
There are no air stones needed as the pump and air hoses provide just the right amount of oxygen to the roots of your plants.
That said, the system is bare-bones, but it provides an excellent base for expanding it into a full-scale and potent indoor hydroponic garden with the purchase of just a few add-ons.
Best Plants To Grow With Hydrofarm Root Spa
This particular system works for growing any size plant, unlike many DWC hydroponic gardens that specialize in growing mainly small and leafy plants.
With the Root Spa, you can grow grapes, dwarf fruit trees, berries, melons, cucumbers, tomatoes, pumpkins, and more.
- Works well with multiple growing mediums.
- Grows just about any type/size of plant.
- Fits well inside or outside.
- Single-bucket/four-bucket versions available.
- Not a complete kit.
- Doesn’t come with lights, timer, or grow medium.
- Must buy your own nutrients.
Best Hydroponic Kit for Small Spaces: iDOO Indoor Hydroponic Garden
- Plant Capacity: 20
- Size: 23.23″ x 12.6″ x 7.32″; 8.98 lbs.
- Indoor or Outdoor: Indoor
- Why It Beats the Competition: This powerful DWC solution with reservoirs that double as window planters while not in use is absolutely unique.
- Best for Growing: Fruits, vegetables, herbs, flowers, and houseplants
The iDOO Indoor Hydroponic Garden includes four 1/2-gallon reservoirs with five grow sites each for a total of 20.
The system also comes with 34-watt full LED spectrum lights and is built for indoor use only.
The reservoirs are removable and can be used as window boxes in addition while disconnected from the system.
The unit is designed for fast growth and high yields and is fully controllable via a smart timer.
No pump is needed for the garden to operate, and its space-saving design allows it to fit just about anywhere you could imagine putting it in your home or office.
Best Plants To Grow With iDOO Indoor Hydroponic Garden
This 20-site DWC unit is best for growing fruits, vegetables, flowers, houseplants, and herbs of all sorts.
Owners have used it successfully for growing peas, eggplant, peppers, succulents, and more.
- Includes powerful grow lights.
- Comes with a smart timer controller.
- Water-level display.
- Space-saving design.
- Works all year long.
- Doesn’t come with growing medium.
- No nutrients included.
- Lacks pH tester and adjusters.
Hydroponic Grow Kit Buyer’s Guide
There are several significant factors to consider before deciding which hydroponic grow kit is best for you:
Type of System (Which Hydroponic Method)
The sort of hydroponic technique that a system is fashioned after is crucial as each method is quite different.
Make sure to familiarize yourself with the six main types of hydroponics before settling on a particular grow kit.
Size of System (Number of Grow Sites)
One of the most important factors to think about prior to choosing a kit is how many plants you plan to grow.
This number determines how many individual grow sites the right system for you will have.
There is also the physical size of the system once it is set up and how much space it requires to consider.
Lighting (Type and Number)
There are several types of lights used for hydroponic growing.
Knowing a bit about each of them enables you to make a better-informed decision in regards to which grow kit is best suited for your needs.
LED, metal halide, and high-pressure sodium lights are among the highest quality and best suited for hydroponics in general.
You also need to be aware of how many lights the system comes with.
Accessories (What Comes With the Purchase)
Another of the most critical factors to pay attention to while shopping for the right hydroponic grow kit is the type and amount of accessories that come with it.
In addition to the basics (reservoir, pipes, tubes, pump, lights, and timer), there are several other items that may or may not come with a grow kit.
The most crucial accessories to look for are nutrients, pots, growing medium, cleaning solution, and pH and EC meter (or test strips).
Cost and Warranty (Price and Guarantee of the Product)
Lastly, the amount of money that a system costs should be considered and compared to others. Furthermore, the type of warranty or guarantee that it includes is also essential.
Kits that lack a warranty as well as a money-back guarantee are probably not a good option. Also, the best products often offer long-term customer service for no extra charge.
Growing Tips for Small Hydroponic Gardens
Once you choose the right grow kit for your hydroponic garden, keep these growing tips in mind and you’ll be acing hydroponic growing in no time:
Keep Things Simple
When you’re first starting off with your hydroponics garden, keeping things simple is crucial.
Research the type of equipment you need and learn everything about it that you can. Practice with your gear, and don’t try anything advanced for the first few grows.
Know Your Plants
Before you even set up your garden, study the types of plants you will grow. Learn what kind of nutrients they need and what sort of growing medium is best.
Buy professionally made nutrients, and stick with them. Avoid straying from these basics.
When first starting out with hydroponics, take down notes of everything that happens.
Make sure to include lighting and watering schedules, the type of nutrients used, how the plants react, which plants grow faster, and any other pertinent information that could be useful in the future.
A Final Word About the Best Hydroponic Grow Kits
Experience the joy of growing a garden without getting your hands dirty! But, having a successful start with hydroponic gardening often depends on the equipment you choose to work with.
Hopefully, our guide helps you make the best-informed buying decision possible while shopping for the best hydroponic grow kit for you!