Did you know that there are moon trees on Earth, scattered in different countries? How is this done, you would ask? We will explain to you. In fact, the story goes back to the 1970s , when traveling to the moon excited the most people and people wanted to take all kinds of things to our satellite.
At that time, the head of the US Forest Service contacted a future astronaut, Stuart Roosa, to offer him to take something small but striking in space: tree seeds. You should know that before becoming an astronaut, Stuart Rossa worked as a firefighter specially trained to extinguish forest fires.
The idea therefore appealed to him and he decided to pay tribute to the forest service by shipping 500 seeds of redwood, loblolly pine, American sycamore, Douglas fir and American sweet gum when it took off from Earth in the part of the Apollo 14 mission.
The history of moon seeds
The Apollo 14 mission was launched from Earth on January 31, 1971 and spent nine days in space. It should be noted that apart from the atypical affairs of Rossa and two other astronauts, the Kitty Hawk command module had also loaded two golf balls apart from the necessary space equipment and scientific equipment.
Unfortunately for the crew, they and their equipment never touched the lunar surface. They only circled the moon 34 times and returned to Earth. Upon landing, the three astronauts underwent a normal decontamination procedure. However, the seeds were mixed in the Rossa cartridge. At the time, everyone thought the seeds were too damaged to germinate.
It is not known how these seeds got to the UK.
But that was not the case. Indeed, most of the seeds survived and were planted in a number of places across the United States but not exclusively. Indeed, Science Alert reports that the Royal Astronomical Society and the British Space Agency have also launched a quest to find these moon trees across Britain.
Apparently around 15 of these trees have been planted in the UK although no one knows yet how they got to the country. In any case, these trees would have grown like any earth tree, except that they went into space.
Scientists have also found that the seeds are very hardy, can take 200 times the dose of radiation needed to kill a human, and still germinate. In any case, Libby Jackson, the space exploration expert for the British Space Agency said she was eager to see what happened to these seeds.