petco.com Ratings and Reviews

Customer Reviews for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank

Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank

Self-cleaning Betta fish tank that grows herbsFish waste feeds the plants while plants clean the waterIncludes organic seeds and a discount coupon for a Betta fishSleek and attractive design with 3 gallon capacityPerfect desktop aquarium for the kitchen, office or classroom
Average Customer Rating:
3.548 / 5
3.5
 / 
5
(31 Reviews) 31
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Breakdown 31 reviews
5 stars
15
4 stars
5
3 stars
1
2 stars
2
1 star
8
20 out of 31(65%)reviewers recommend this product.
Customer Questions & Answers:
24 Questions | 47 Answers
Customer Reviews for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Review 1 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

Aquafarm fish tank

PostedMarch 10, 2015
Customer Avatar
from dutchess,ny
I thought this would be ideal for my elderly Mom for xmas. In less than 3 months the pump died and I would have been happy to buy a replacement, but there are NONE available. Don't waste your money
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
I'm really sorry to hear about your water pump! It's very likely that the pump is just clogged and below is a helpful video on cleaning it out:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/y0yhu6ushp85s09/Water%20Pump%20Vidio%20-%20Alicia.%20No%20audio.wmv

If this doesn't work, please email us asap at contact@backtotheroots.com so we can ship you a replacement. We appreciate your support! Bttrventures
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
I'm really sorry to hear about your water pump! It's very likely that the pump is just clogged and below is a helpful video on cleaning it out:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/y0yhu6ushp85s09/Water%20Pump%20Vidio%20-%20Alicia.%20No%20audio.wmv

If this doesn't work, please email us asap at contact@backtotheroots.com so we can ship you a replacement. We appreciate your support! Bttrventures
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 2 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

Happy fish in my office

PostedFebruary 13, 2015
Customer Avatar
from Worcester, MA
I love my Aquafarm! This is a perfect accent for my office. The fish is lovely to look at during the day and he and the slight trickle of water I hear are very calming.
Having plants in the office are always beneficial. You can see two pots of wheat grass growing. I haven't planted the other three yet however I'm excited to get some alfalfa sprouts going for the added benefit of salad toppings!
There is zero natural light where my tank is and the grass took off like crazy. Within a couple of days it looked like the picture below. I haven't had the tank long yet but I'm experienced with fish and I think this will be a great experience. I did add the tidy tank product but I like the idea of a snail as a cleaner and will add one of those soon.
The decor was purchased at Petco along with the fish. I used different gravel than what is provided, there didn't seem to be enough. The Growstones are brilliant. The water comes up the plant baskets only about .5 cm but the water is sucked up through the stones all the way to the top.
Back to the Roots is fantastic to work with if you need help as well as their partner companies who provide the products your Aquafarm comes with.
I would recommend this to a friend!
User submitted photo
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
Thank you so much for sharing your positive experience! We're so happy the AquaFarm is a part of your day-to-day life and adds a vibrant accent to your office :) We appreciate your support and if you ever want to connect one-on-one, you can email us at contact@backtotheroots.com. Thanks again! Bttrventures
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
Thank you so much for sharing your positive experience! We're so happy the AquaFarm is a part of your day-to-day life and adds a vibrant accent to your office :) We appreciate your support and if you ever want to connect one-on-one, you can email us at contact@backtotheroots.com. Thanks again! Bttrventures
+1point
1of 1voted this as helpful.
Review 3 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

Great for classroom

PostedJanuary 25, 2015
Customer Avatar
from Grand Rapids, MI
We've had this product for just under a year. The students love watching the fish and eating the plants that it grows. It is in a kindergarten classroom in a Montessori school.
I would recommend this to a friend!
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
We're so happy to hear the AquaFarm has landed in your kindergarden classroom! It's our mission to foster a new vision and relationship to how we grow/consume food and we think that's best started with the youngest of minds. Thank you for sharing and happy AquaFarming! Bttrventures
+2points
2of 2voted this as helpful.
Review 4 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

AMAZING

PostedJanuary 8, 2015
Customer Avatar
from PA
I don't know why most of you are having issues with this product. I have a male beta, a dwarf frog, and a snail and they are all doing GREAT! Prior to this tank i kept all three of them in a different tank. My beta hardly had color and i wasn't sure what was wrong. After putting them in this I could not be happier. My beta has begun to get its color back(still not perfect but he is getting there) and there are even bubbles at the top of the tank which means the beta is healthy. The water is crystal clear and the filter makes no noise. As for the plants they GREW SO QUICKLY. I have two wheat grasses and 1 other one i can't remember the name. I just put in parsley and holly basil and I am very curious to see if they do as well…who knows though!
I would recommend this to a friend!
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
Thank you so much for sharing your experience with us! We're super excited to hear that all of your animals are flourishing in the AquaFarm and you're able to grow healthy plants :) If you have any additional questions about growing in your tank, be sure to let us know! You can email contact@backtotheroots.com for more info. Appreciate your support! Bttrventures
+5points
5of 5voted this as helpful.
Review 5 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

Great tank!

PostedJanuary 5, 2015
Customer Avatar
from Fairfax, Va
I really love this tank. I first got it and It came with really good instructions to set up. And it also came with extra stuff like nutritional food for my fish and water conditioning. This is my third week having it and my wheat grass is growing perfectly fine and my basil is starting to sprout. Also the way the tank helps grow the plants is really neat. It is really big and has a lot of space for my fish. My tank set up also came with a fridge magnet called "Home Grown" in which of you ever run out of supplies such as seeds, grow stones, tank parts, and zymbac etc, I think that was pretty neat. you will need to do some maintenance once in a while because the fish waste will get clogged in your filter tube but the parts are very easy to clean. I really recommend this fish tank.
I would recommend this to a friend!
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMarch 11, 2015
We're so happy to hear you enjoy AquaFarming!! It's a one-of-a-kind product and we really appreciate your support and excitement for it :) Sounds like your plants are doing great and if you ever have questions be sure to email contact@backtotheroots.com for support. Appreciate you! Bttrventures
+3points
4of 5voted this as helpful.
Review 6 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
2 / 5
2 / 5

BIGGER THAN I THOUGHT

PostedDecember 1, 2014
Customer Avatar
from SAN DIEGO
I WAS HOPING TO PLACE BY MY KITCHEN WINDOW NEXT TO THE SINK. BUT IT IS TO BIG. DOESN'T NEED TO BE THIS BIG. COULD BE A MUCH BETTER LOOKING PRODUCT.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruDecember 9, 2014
Thanks for sharing your experience. We worked closely with PETA when creating the tank and decided that 3 gallons would be best for a betta fish. The tank's dimensions are approximately: H 12in. x L 11in. x D 8in.Bttrventures
-6points
8of 22voted this as helpful.
Review 7 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

Disappointing

PostedNovember 21, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Florida
I'm one of those people who has to do everything by the book. I followed the directions for this very strictly. I have wheatgrass in two pods and basil in the other three. My husband and I were very excited about a self-cleaning tank. I set the tank up exactly as directed. After a couple of days, I purchased a moss ball to help clean the tank because I read that if the tank has direct light, which is required for the basil to grow according to the directions, the tank could grow algae. The moss ball is supposed to prevent algae. I feed 6 pellets twice a day, as directed. My water became very cloudy, so I thought that maybe the roots are supposed to be in the water to actually clean the water. I gently pulled some of the roots through two of the small holes, which was a very difficult process. It hasn't helped. If this tank is self cleaning, why would snails that aren't provided be required to have a clean tank? That isn't self cleaning. On top of that, when I first purchased the tank, one of the suction cups on the filter didn't work. So I had to drive back across town just to swap out the filter. It seems like this is a great idea that is poorly implemented.
Side note: My beta appears healthy and does not seem to be the cause of any issues we are having with the tank. Also, we are using a lamp for direct light, so the tank is not getting too hot and is remaining at a constant temperature.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruJanuary 20, 2015
Thanks so much for sharing your experience. The self cleaning cycle is pretty simple. Basically the plants remove the harmful toxins in the water. This is why your betta is healthy and happy despite the cloudiness. The algae build up is cause by the plethora of light and nutrients in the water. I would (a) feed your fish a little less... your fish may not need 12 pellets a day. And (b) use a protective backing to prevent the light from hitting the tank's water. Where there is no light, algae will have a hard time growing and your moss ball and snail will be able to keep the algae under control. Please feel free to email Back to the Roots directly for more support.

Best,

Jasmine Jackson
Back to the Roots
contact@backtotheroots.com Bttrventures
-2points
9of 20voted this as helpful.
Review 8 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

Big Failure!

PostedOctober 24, 2014
Customer Avatar
You can't grow anything in the top of these tanks. It all dies within days. The manufacturer sent me replacement parts for everything and it still does not work! Wheat grass seeds pop out quick then are dead in 2 days! Nothing will grow. I've tried seeds and mature plants. Nothing works. Don't waste your time or money!!!!!
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruOctober 30, 2014
Wheat grass has about a 4-6 week life cycle and grow extremely well in a variety of environments. If yours dies within 2 days, then you've set it up incorrectly or the pump is not functioning. Can you please reach out to me directly? Jasmine, contact@backtotheroots.comBttrventures
+7points
10of 13voted this as helpful.
Review 9 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

more trouble than it's worth

PostedOctober 13, 2014
Customer Avatar
from las vegas, nv
I received this tank as a birthday gift and was extra excited because I had been scoping out bettas and love to grow my own wheatgrass. What could be better?! I set up the tank according to instructions and then set out to pick out my betta. The first couple weeks everything went as planned. I grew only wheatgrass because these seemed easiest and the location of the tank was in a low light area. Even with the wheatgrass growing well, the tank water became cloudy. I also noticed my poor bettas fins starting to get all tattered. After some research I realized he had fin rot (which continued to get worse), more than likely due to water conditions. I quickly purchased some items from the recommended home grown ponics website, including fish therapy and more tidy tank and zym bac. I used them all according to the directions, along with testing the water. The gravel still needed to be cleaned along with frequent water changes of about 20-30% of the water. This became a huge hassle because of the set up of the tank, always having to removing the grow bed and pump every time you need to get into the tank, also getting water all over. This is definitely not a self cleaning tank. A lot of money has gone into the care of the betta and after 4 months I finally got an actual tank with a filter to move him to. I think the idea of this system is neat, though has a lot of room for improvement, please do your research before torturing a poor little betta!
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruOctober 17, 2014
Hi Kasdeeish,

Thank you so much for sharing your experience and for supporting our company. Firstly, in low light conditions adding a water plant your tank will prevent cloudiness from dissolved algae. Also it sounds like your Betta had fin rot. Fish Therapy is an excellent product to help heal your fish. However, it's important to address the cause of his Fin Rot. A few tips to prevent further damage are:
1. Cut down on the feeding (6-10 pellets a day or even every other day is plenty)
2. Make sure that the water is warm. This will make the AquaFarm more comfortable and will reduce fin rot caused by stress.
3. Be mindful of your decorations. Bettas have very sensitive fins so avoid jagged and plastic accessories.
Finally, If solid waste is building up on the gravel rapidly, then you may be over feeding. Adding a snail or algae eater will eliminate the need to clean the gravel. If you have further questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Best,

Jasmine Jackson
Back to the Roots
contact@backtotheroots.com | 510.922.9758Bttrventures
-2points
3of 8voted this as helpful.
Review 10 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

I really like this system

PostedOctober 7, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Galveston, TX
I have had this about 3 weeks now, I have a betta and a snail. I just had the water tested and they said everything looked great. I have a small heater in mine, and I'm not crazy about the look of it and the filter hanging down(different Aquafarm models have different filter setups). It still looks pretty sleek though, so I can deal with it. I have the wheat grass they provided in 3 of the plant slots, and I have already trimmed them several times, I have the basil seeds in the other two. I recommend watering the basil seeds, as mine have just started growing since I began watering them. The company seems very helpful when anyone has a complaint, and seems very passionate about their product.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+6points
6of 6voted this as helpful.
Review 11 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

Very poorly constructed; low quality.

PostedOctober 7, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Colorado
I am sorry; I know some people like this product, but people should know about its shoddy quality. The top warped almost immediately, lifting one corner out of the water completely and so nothing will grow on that side. The whole "grow the herbs" thing doesn't work and the tiny pump even came with a web reference to find a better one. I seeded carefully; it send up a few shoots, but those don't flourish and stop growing after a few days. (It is in a place with good sunlight.) I followed the instructions very carefully, but truly wish I had never bought this. I feel sorry for the fish I have in it and am thinking I'll have to get another tank just to move him.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruOctober 13, 2014
Hi Suzie,

Thank you for sharing your experience and for being an early supporter of our AquaFarm. The current AquaFarm has a lid and top made from a different plastic to rectify the warping issue. I'd love to chat with you about upgrading your tank and I am more than happy to provide support surrounding plant growth. Aquaponics is an ancient for of farming; just takes a little indoor gardening know how. Please contact me directly!

Best,

Jasmine Jackson
Back to the Roots
contact@backtotheroots.com | 510.922.9758Bttrventures
0points
1of 2voted this as helpful.
Review 12 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

A little effort goes along way

PostedOctober 5, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Plano, Tx
After purchasing this product I was under the impression that if I followed the instructions and put all of the minimum components into play that I would have a successful aquafarm. The tank almost immediately became filthy. So after using the de-sludge and waiting two days I cleaned the tank and purchased two snails. Miraculously the tank cleared up however after a few weeks, buildup of nastiness began to litter the bottom of the tank.. I cleaned the tank again and purchased two africanized dwarf frogs. I'm going to heavily emphasize this, This is the winning combination for this tank. Occasionally you will have to clean the pool of water in the reservoir above the tank however the tank itself is always spotless! I purchased an algae rock to ensure the snails had plenty to eat because I worried since the tank was so clean they were starving. The beta & frogs each have their own pellets. This tank is on cruise control. I add water and clean the top reservoir roughly once a month. After a proper setup you are golden. Love this lazy man tank. One word of caution is be sure to only use silk plants or low height decorations. Your beta's fins will thank you. One other word of lazy man advice is to purchase pre-grown herbs from a home improvement store wash all of the soil off of the roots and re-plant them into the rock cups..
I would recommend this to a friend!
User submitted photo
User submitted photo
+16points
17of 18voted this as helpful.
Review 13 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
4 / 5
4 / 5

I like it

PostedAugust 24, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Arroyo Grande, CA
I really like this tank for the most part. It does what it says, the water stays clear with the plants and my fish enjoys it.
I think it is a very pricey tank though, and I have had a few issues/complaints. The top part that holds the plants is pretty cheap and doesn't seem to fit as well as it could. The tube for the pump just doesn't fit in the little slot for it and therefore the top does not fit tightly like it should.
The pump wore out fast.. in less than 3 weeks. I ran it during the day and shut it off at night, as suggested in the instructions, yet it didn't last even a month.
The seeds included could be better, or have a better selection. The wheatgrass is the only thing that will grow in mine. The basil just dries out and dies. So maybe my complaint is more about the grow rocks not getting enough water than the plants, I'm not sure. I would assume that the seeds included would have been the best choices for this system. But the rocks on top are just plain dry and couldn't get water to the basil. The wheatgrass did fine because it grows so quickly the roots reached into the water quickly.
So right now my tank is a little on the dirty side, because I have no plants growing. I have replanted the wheatgrass and basil.. When the wheatgrass was growing the tank looked great, so I am pleased with knowing the system does work and did so with no other care than getting the plants to grow. I've had this tank a few months now and haven't actually had to change any of the water at all, just top it off here and there.
Overall I give it a 4, the idea is great and does work, I would just like to have plants growing anything like in the picture, and for the price, a pump that lasts at least a few months!
Oh, and I really dislike the image on the tank. It's cute but I had to turn the tank around to actually see my fish. Would be nice if it had been just an optional decal instead. I bought the tank for function, not looks.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+4points
5of 6voted this as helpful.
Review 14 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

Dead Fish :(

PostedMay 23, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Glendale, California
I've been coveting this tank for my betta fish for some time, and finally went out today and bought it. I was excited to be able to treat him to a fun, new environment! After carefully reading all of the instructions, I set up the tank exactly as specified in the manual, and put my betta fish in his new home. He seemed a little anxious about his new habitat, but I figured it would just take him a while to get settled. After making sure he was fine, I went out for the evening. Several hours later, (just now) I arrived home to find my poor fish dead. I can't imagine what the cause might be, since he was in perfect health and I followed all of the set up instructions. I am a very conscientious pet owner, and know that he was receiving adequate care. After dishing out $60, I'm going to give the tank a second chance with a new fish, but I'm very disappointed so far.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
-10points
14of 38voted this as helpful.
Review 15 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
4 / 5
4 / 5

Great tank with minor problems

PostedMay 22, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Baltimore, MD
I really love my tank. My betta fish is doing great, I have a snail doing laps, and I have two types of basil and cilantro doing well in the grow stones. I've had a few problems:
1 - the water reservoir tray is slightly bowed and is difficult to snap in place.
2 - The air pump that came with it was the weakest link. Mine stopped working but the manufacturer (Back to the Roots) replaced it with a better submersible pump for free.
3 - STRONGLY recommend putting a backing on the tank if it's going to be in a lot of sunlight. Otherwise you'll have algae issues.
All and all I am extremely happy with my Aqua Farm!
I would recommend this to a friend!
+6points
10of 14voted this as helpful.
Review 16 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
4 / 5
4 / 5

back to the roots 3 gallon fish tank

PostedApril 23, 2014
Customer Avatar
from FL
The tank is fine.. The problem is with the lid- the air filter tube did not fit correctly, snug under the top with the top completely closed. The lid pinched the air tube and won't close completely. The top part (place where water is caught where the plants and rocks are) does not sit evenly leveled. The coupon for a beta fish was expired and they only gave us four pouches of seeds to fill five spots and three of the four were the same variety of seed
I would recommend this to a friend!
+6points
11of 16voted this as helpful.
Review 17 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
3 / 5
3 / 5

returned item

PostedApril 9, 2014
Customer Avatar
from st. louis
I received the item and upon unpacking, it appeared the inside tray was slightly bowed. (I'm not sure if this is part of the design.) I attempted to return to the store. The one I attempted to exchange had missing parts. Price for the product online at full retail are also higher than in-store. The special promotion I used really didn't save me any money. Overall, I left feeling the mostly plastic product was generally overpriced for the value received.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
+8points
9of 10voted this as helpful.
Review 18 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
4 / 5
4 / 5

Easy to do and entertaining

PostedApril 6, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Boone, IA
We found we had everything included in the kit except the fish and there was a coupon for that. Easy to set up with the clear instructions. We are enjoying our aquaponics set up. The only problem is that our cats want to eat the herbs.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+3points
5of 7voted this as helpful.
Review 19 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
5 / 5
5 / 5

Aqua Farm

PostedMarch 18, 2014
Customer Avatar
This is great, we have had it for over a month. So easy to set up, has EVERYTHING to get going except the fish. We went for mature plants that were non-toxic and for indoors. They are instant beauty and Zen. I had planned to try to build one of these but when we saw it and the low cost to have everything but the fish, it was an easy buy. It really helps too not to feel so much like winter with planting and seeing it thrive. Only downfall is PETCO doesn't carry the chemicals that came with the tank to keep it healthy and safe for the water and plants, you have to go online for it.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+8points
10of 12voted this as helpful.
Review 20 for Back to the Roots AquaFarm 3 Gallon Fish Tank
Overall rating 
1 / 5
1 / 5

Don't waste your money on this tank

PostedFebruary 26, 2014
Customer Avatar
from Glenwood Springs, CO
I followed all of the instructions and in the first week I was changing the water every other day because it would get incredible murky from the plants and "grow rocks". I was looking for a low-maintenance tank, and this is definitely not it. I ended up throwing out all of the plants, grow rocks, and pots for the plants. It is also depressingly minimalist and I ended up spending as much on more rocks and hiding places for my beta as I did on the tank itself. Don't buy this tank!
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
Back To The Roots- Community Happyness GuruMay 21, 2014
Thanks for sharing your experience. It's perfectly normal for the water to get very cloudy after set up for 3-4 days. If should clear up within a week and there's no need to change the water at this time. The cloudiness just shows that the bacteria is blooming and ridding the tank of toxic ammonia. Once the plants are growing the water should be crystal clear.

Also, this is a fish tank-- it's important to add decorations and make it a happy home for your fish. It does include natural river stone to decorate the bottom of the tank, but it's fun to make it your own by adding plants, large stones, a cave, etc.

If you'd like to set your AquaFarm up again, please contact us directly for replacements of the materials you discarded.

Best,

Jasmine Jackson
Back to the Roots
contact@backtotheroots.com 510.922.9758Bttrventures
+4points
11of 18voted this as helpful.
1 2 next>>