Saturday, May 18, 2024

AUK Starter Kit – Fully-Automatic Indoor Smart Garden Kit

Growing culinary herbs at home is a great way to ensure that you always have fresh herbs available when you’re looking to flavor food and/or drinks. Unlike most plants, herbs don’t require much space to grow, so they can easily be grown indoors. While culinary herbs like basil, parsley, coriander, and other herbs can be purchased in pre-planted pots that are ready to harvest, these don’t really last that long, as once they run out of leaves or flowers, you’ll have to purchase more. This is where having an indoor smart garden comes in handy. Essentially, indoor smart gardens are automated herb growing kits that automatically water your herb plants and provide them with all the important nutrients required for their growth. By having an indoor smart garden, you’ll have homegrown herbs available at all times for your culinary needs, which is much more convenient than having to run out to the store when you require a particular herb. With all that said, have a look at the AUK Starter Kit.

The AUK Starter Kit is a fully-automatic indoor smart garden kit built of sustainable materials that’s extremely resource efficient and has everything you need to grow herbs at home, featuring 6 open-air plant pots, a 3.8 L water tank, a three-part nutrient mixer which utilizes 3 separate 100% chemical-free nutrient capsules that together make up a blend of refined minerals which give your plants all the 14 essential elements they need to truly flourish, a custom full spectrum LED light that mics natural sunlight and boasts adjustable brightness levels and 3 different color spectrums to tailor to each growth stage, while also boasting a low power consumption of just 6 kWh per month and 90% less water than traditional farming, a user-friendly interface with built-in controls, and a smart NFC plant chip powered by an intelligent algorithm that controls the light, water, and nutrients to create the perfect conditions your plants need to grow.

The kit also comes together with 4 packets of non-GMO seeds including coriander, basil, leafy parsley, and arugula, plus a bag of growing substrate made from grounded coconut husks that provides the roots of your plants with plenty of oxygen and a stable pH for exceptional growth.

Designed with both the planet and good health habits in mind, this fully-automatic indoor smart garden kit allows you to grow your own culinary herbs at home in a significantly more sustainable way, thus reducing the demand for agricultural farming. With it, you’ll be able to keep yourself stocked up on your favorite culinary herbs for a whole year.

What’s more is that on top of letting you grow your own herbs, the kit can also be used to grow dwarf plant varieties of tomatoes and chili.

Now, let’s have a more detailed look at the AUK Starter Kit, see how this fully-automatic indoor smart garden kit is built, and go over how it is designed to work and how you can operate it.

DESIGN & SPECS

Starting with the unit’s size, the AUK Starter Kit comes at a fairly compact size, measuring exactly 22 inches long by 11.41 inches wide by 13.77 inches tall (56 x 29 x 35 cm), or 19.68 inches (50 cm) tall if counting with its plant light rods.

Thanks to its compact size, this indoor smart garden kit won’t take up too much space. The whole kit is also fairly lightweight, weighing approximately 6.61 lbs. (3 kg).

AUK Starter Kit
AUK Starter Kit – Compact Size / Beautiful Minimalist Design

Moreover, the AUK also features a sleek and super-minimalist design, which gives it a beautiful and lavish look, allowing it to blend in seamlessly with the rest of the room. More importantly, this kit does not require being set up under direct sunlight. As such, you can set it up wherever you’d like, whether that’s on your kitchen countertops, on a shelf in your living room, or even in a cabinet in your hallway.

Best of all, to further minimize climate impact, the kit also comes in a plastic-free, 100% recyclable packaging.

What’s more is that the AUK Starter Kit also packs a durable and Eco-friendly construction, as the kit is mostly built of sustainable materials. More specifically, the kit’s base-plate and its pots are built of biocomposite plastic, while the wooden rods for its light are built either out of pine or walnut timber (customer’s choice) that’s responsibly sourced from European forests. The kit’s lamp casing is built of Scandinavian aluminum.

Durable, Eco-friendly construction ( built of sustainable materials )

Moving on to the kit’s main components. For planting and growing your herb plants, the AUK Starter Kit comes equipped with a total of 6 plant pots built of biocomposite plastic that feature an open-air design.

Equipped with 6 plant pots built of biocomposite plastic

This design choice not only allows you to you seeds like in a regular garden, but also makes this indoor garden kit more effective than closed capsule systems (i.e. indoor smart garden kits with protective pods around their plants pots).

Not only can you plant several different types of plant herbs seeds, but you can even plant plant-cuttings and also pre-cultivate or replant already-grown herbs.

For filling up its plant pods with soil, the kit comes with an included bag of growing substrate, which is a soft soil substrate made from grounded coconut husks / shells (also know as coco coir) that provides the roots of your plants with plenty of oxygen and a stable pH for exceptional growth.

Comes with an included bag of coco coir soil growing substrate

Note that the kit’s coco coir soil is free of nutrients, as the AUK itself is programmed to intelligently and automatically control how many nutrients are dispensed to its plant pots.

It’s also worth noting that the grounded coconut husks used to make this special growing substrate are sourced from the leftovers of coconut production, which is yet another commendable Eco-friendly approach that’s used to put this indoor smart garden kit together.

For growing your herb plants right out of the box, the kit also comes together with 4 packets of non-GMO seeds, including coriander, basil, leafy parsley, and arugula.

Comes with 4 packets of non-GMO seeds ( coriander, basil, leafy parsley, and arugula )

Each bag of seeds contains enough seeds for 6 pots, and users should only plant between 20-40 seeds per pot. The seeds germinate in approximately one week, as the day count for their germination mainly depends on which type of herb plant your looking to grow.

The plants will be ready to harvest in a few weeks (2 to 4 weeks for leaf parsley, 3 to 6 weeks for basil, 4 to 8 weeks for arugula, etc.), but note that their growth speed is quite dependent on the current room temperature. The warmer the better, but it’s recommended that you try keeping the room temperature under 28 degrees for the best possible growth results.

One crop from the kit’s herb plant seeds typically has a lifespan varying between 4 to 10 months, depending on what you grow, so you can harvest them for months on end. Note that it’s best to harvest the plants little by little so that new leaves can get proper exposure to the kit’s full-spectrum light and grow healthy throughout their mature stage.

For providing the plants with water, the kit also comes equipped with a large removable water tank that boasts a total capacity of 3.8 L (128.49 fl.oz.), for which the system is rated to utilize approximately 90% less water than traditional farming methods.

Equipped with a large removable 3.8 L (128.49 fl.oz.) water tank

To ensure that your herb plants always have water, it is recommended that the kit’s 3.8 L water tank is refilled every second week (approximately every 10 to 20th day, depending on the growth speed of your herb plants).

Integrated directly under the kit’s water tank, we have its three-part nutrient mixer system, which works by utilizing 3 separate nutrient capsules filled with different combinations of minerals that together make up a powerful nutritious blend of refined minerals that give your plants all the 14 essential elements they need to truly flourish.

The kit’s three-part nutrient mixer system

The nutrient blends from the kit’s 3 capsules are mixed together based on what type of herb plant you’re looking to grow, and also based on how far along the plants are in their growth cycle.

The kit’s three-part nutrient mixer system

The nutrition blends that fill each of the kit’s nutrient capsules are 100% free of pesticides and are also free of other harmful chemicals.

At the top-side of the kit, there’s a built-in custom full spectrum LED light that mics natural sunlight. The kit’s full spectrum light boasts adjustable brightness levels and 3 different color spectrums, allowing the system to intelligently adjust its light’s intensity and color that it provides your herb plants with according to each growth stage they go through.

Equipped with a built-in custom full spectrum LED light that mics natural sunlight

Thanks to that, your herb plants are capable of growing up to 5 times faster than they would be in traditional farming environments.

In regards to the system’s power consumption, as said before, this fully-automatic indoor smart garden kit is particularly designed to be extremely resource efficient. That said, the kit boasts a noticeably low power consumption of just 6 kWh per month, as it is rated to have a Power Supply of 24W, using approximately only 9W on average (25W when the light is on, 1W when the light is off), costing less than $1.07 / 1€ per month.

Has a low power consumption in order to be very resource efficient

INTERFACE / CONTROL PANEL

For configuring and controlling the kit’s automation for the growth of its herb plants, the AUK Starter Kit features a user-friendly interface that’s equipped with just a few built-in controls.

Starting at the left hand side, we have its plant chip reader slot for its smart NFC plant chip, which is powered by an intelligent algorithm that makes the kit’s system capable of automatically controlling the light, water, and nutrients that are used throughout each plant’s growth phase in order to create the perfect conditions your plants need to grow and thrive.

Note that the AUK Starter Kit comes with a green plant chip which is coded with a plant program for green plants (including herb plants, lettuce, etc.) that’s focused on promoting stem and leaf growth and delaying flowering for as long as possible.

Nevertheless, you can also get the red plant chip (sold separately for $16.01 / 15€) in case that you’re looking to grow dwarf varieties of tomatoes and chili, which is coded to promote plant growth in the early stages, and flowering and ripening in later stages.

Then, there’s 4-LED moisture indicator light that counts down to the next watering, from 4 blue lights to one. When Auk is watering, you’ll see all the blue lights going in a wave up and down.

At the center of the kit’s interface, there’s a 5-button panel numbered 1-5 that shows you which growth phase your herb plants are currently at (while the system does take care of changing phases automatically as your plants grow, you can also change its current phase manually by holding down the corresponding button of the phase you want for about 5 seconds).

Lastly, at the right hand side of the kit’s interface, there’s a nutrition capsule status light that will blink red when it’s time to refill the kit’s nutrition capsules, and a plant status light that lights up when the kit’s full-spectrum light is on, and lights off when the light is off.

FINAL THOUGHTS

All in all, this fully-automatic indoor smart garden kit has everything you need to grow herbs at home. Not only is it extremely resource efficient, but you can be assured that it is fully capable of providing you with a healthy supply of your favorite herb plants for a whole year.

AUK Starter Kit
AUK Starter Kit

While the AUK Starter Kit is currently only available for purchase in Europe, it will soon be launched and sold in the US.

If you’re interested in purchasing it, know that each kit will be priced at $335 (currently discounted from 369€ to 289€ for EU customers), and each purchase also comes accompanied by a 100-Days Money-Back Guarantee. You can order it online directly from AUK’s official shopping page.


AVAILABLE ACCESSORIES / SEED & SOIL RESTOCK / CAPSULE REFILLS

Finally, when the time comes that you run out of seeds, out of the kit’s coco coir soil, or for when the kit’s nutrient capsules become empty, know that the company also sells extra seed packets (around $6.30 / 5.90€ each), as well as additional soil bags ($18.14 / 17€ per soil bag), and also nutrient refill kits ($30.95 / 29€ per refill kit) on their website, along with other handy accessories, all of which you can browse via AUK’s accessory shopping page.


 

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