Magazine article American Forests

(More) Trees from Space

Magazine article American Forests

(More) Trees from Space

Article excerpt

One of the most popular trees offered through our Historic Tree program has long been the Moon Sycamore, the tree that literally went to the moon and back when smoke-jumper-turned-astronaut Stuart Roosa wanted to bring a reminder of his Forest Service days along on the ApoDo XIV mission. And who wouldn't find them fascinating - how many trees have been to space?

Well, now there's another member of the space-trees club. In late February, the shuttle Endeavor returned to Earth after a two-week mission to the International Space Station (ISS), and carried with it some unusual passengers: several willow shoots, grown on the ISS as part of a Canadian-led experiment. These were the first trees of any kind to be grown in the ISS. How did they manage to actually grow any kind of plant in space? Apparently with the help of the still-experimental Advanced Biological Research System, a box that allows researchers to carefully control the environmental factors within. …

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