Botanium MainOne of the things I miss most over the fall and winter months is the fresh herbs, berries, and vegetables that I get from the garden. With the Botanium Self-Watering Hydroponic Smart Planter, you can grow fresh herbs, strawberries, tomatoes, chilis, and I’m sure more, year-round right in your home. Today I’m reviewing the Botanium to see how this sleek and stylish planter works.

Inside the box

Once you’ve decided whether you want the Botanium in white or grey and purchased it, it’s time to open the box and see what’s inside.

You’ll find a box of growing medium (as opposed to soil), the Botanium planter with charging cord and USB adapter, a bottle of Botanium nutrients, a quick start guide, and the user manual.

Getting started with your Botanium

Botanium how to use

Before getting started with your Botanium Self-Watering Hydroponic Smart Planter, you’ll want to read through the quick start guide as there are a few important bits of information you’ll want to know. The planter itself has two parts—the top growing container with the watering ring, and the bottom water tank.

Before filling the growing container with the highly porous growing medium, it will need a good rinse (as it’s quite dusty). The idea behind the porous medium is that it holds a lot of water while also providing an aerated environment (which the roots of the plant need). Because the planter works with a USB adapter, you’ll want to place it close to a socket and be sure to read about how much nutrients to add to the water, as I’m sure this will be important in the growth of your herbs or plants.

What you can grow in the Botanium

Plants that work well in the Botanium are thirsty plants like basil, oregano, mint, chilis, tomatoes, and strawberries. Ideally you would plant a few seeds and see how many germinate over the next 10 days, and if you get many sprouting, you will want to thin them out. Alternatively, you can plant pre-grown plants like I did to keep them happy and thriving long term. Just give the roots a good shake to remove excess dirt as the Botanium uses the porous growing medium as opposed to soil.

Testing out the Botanium

As I was on a tighter time schedule for testing out the Botanium, I didn’t have the opportunity to grow a plant from seed as it can take up to 10 days just to germinate. With those 10 days as well as the time required to grow enough to produce a useable product, I decided to plant a pre-grown basil plant.

I have never successfully been able to keep a basil plant alive for long in my own kitchen, so I was interested to see how this one would fair. After measuring out the correct amount of grow medium needed to fill the planter, I rinsed it off well in a strainer and filled the growing container, making sure not to cover the watering holes around the top ring of the planter. I then added four full pipettes of the nutrients to the water container and filled it with water. Since I was planting a basil plant (as opposed to a seed), I gave the roots a good shake to get rid of as much soil as I could and gently planted it in the growing medium.

At this point I have to mention that I noticed how stylish my bright green basil looked in contrast to the white planter. It may seem like something small, but if aesthetics are important to you, this planter looks great.

Botanium wateringWhile I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, I crossed my fingers and hoped my little basil plant would be happy. It’s been a few days, and it’s still flourishing, which I’m thrilled about.

Ideally you would put your seeds on the top of the growing medium and then gently cover them. You’ll notice when putting the growing container and watering container together that there is no worry about whether you’re aligning it correctly, as there is a small notch that needs to be fitted so it connects correctly.

Next I plugged the USB end from the Botanium into the USB adapter and plugged it into the socket. The watering kicks on almost immediately, waters for a few seconds, then stops. It’s designed to water every third hour, which is great for anyone who often forgets to water their indoor plants.

Final thoughts

Botanium with basil
This basil was planted using a pre-grown plant.

The best feature of the Botanium by far is the ease of use and how it allows you to grow fresh herbs, strawberries, tomatoes, and more—year-round. Fresh herbs are always so nice to cook with, as opposed to dried herbs if given the option. It’s simple to use, and all the info you need to get started is easy to read in the quick start guide.

Once you have your water container full and your seeds planted, it’s as simple as plugging it in and then making sure you’re refilling the water container when needed. I also love that with the porous medium, the drainage is amazing, and the excess water goes right back down into the water container to be reused for further waterings. The actual watering is extremely quiet, which I was impressed with. The water streams are a gentle flow, and with all the other noise and hustle and bustle of a household, you won’t even notice it watering.

The Botanium is also aesthetically pleasing to look at, and quite modern looking in design. You can choose between a crisp white or neutral grey, and it’s slim and sleek, which means it will both look good on your counters or window ledge and won’t take up too much space. You could easily have more than one going with a variety of herbs, berries, and veggies. It would be so lovely to have a few with your must-have herbs growing for fresh on demand herbs when needed—right at your fingertips.

My son is always complaining about the lack of fruit and berry variety over fall and winter, and he would love to have a strawberry plant year-round, so maybe that will be our next growing adventure.

I also think the Botanium would make a great hostess or housewarming gift. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t use herbs when cooking, and I know I would love to receive one as a gift.

You can find the Botanium Self-Watering Hydroponic Smart Planter at Best Buy online.

Lindsey Reed
I am a mom of two boys who loves reading and trail runs. I am passionate about health, fitness and food and write about these topics and more on my personal blog