“In order for us to have a future that’s exciting and inspiring, it has to be one where we’re a space-bearing civilization” – Elon Musk
Space travel is in the news after SpaceX’s Dragon capsule successfully carried two astronauts to the International Space Station on Sunday, 31st May, 2020 – the first time a private company has ever accomplished this feat. This has brought up a familiar question – will humans ever explore the depths of space?
One established truth is that our food, even if flash frozen, will not survive beyond 6-8 months in space. So, we will need to grow our own nutritious food in space to travel to Mars and beyond. And the brilliant astronauts at the International Space Station have been performing experiments in space for years to prepare for this occasion.
Image: Plants being grown in special vegetation chambers (Source: National Geographic)
Here are four plants that have grown well in space: -
Image: Lettuce grown in the ISS’s veggie chamber (Source: Nasa.Gov)
Astronauts grew lettuce of the Red Romaine variety entirely in space – these were reported to be quite delicious and safe for human consumption and more lettuce seeds have been sent up in the recent SpaceX capsule.
Image: Tomatoes grown in NASA’s veggie chamber (Source: Nasa.Gov)
Germany launched a satellite in 2018 to test if tomatoes can grow in low-gravity environments. China’s lunar lander even carried these plants to the moon in a sealed biosphere as recent as January 2019. It’s safe to say that we will be able to enjoy a refreshing tomato in our future space adventures.
Image: Tomatoes grown in the ISS’s veggie chamber (Source: Nasa.Gov)
Astronaut Peggy Whitson helped grow the nutritious, fresh Chinese Cabbage in under a month in 2017. This was the fifth plant successfully germinated in space.
Image: Zinnia grown in the ISS’s veggie chamber (Source: Nasa.Gov)
The first flowering plant grown in the International Space Station’s Veggie chamber was the beautiful Zinnia plant on Jan 2016. The astronauts were able to take care of the plant with only a one-page resource sent by NASA.
Wouldn’t it be amazing to grow these space plants in your home? You can order all of these plants from our catalog online.
Which plants would you want to grow in space? Let us know in the comments below
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