Launching Plants Into Space

Plants and flowers are an important part of the ecosystem that makes life possible here on Planet Earth. Plant life uses the carbon dioxide we give off in basic life processes, which is why an indoor plant or two can freshen up any indoor space. Now, a team of researchers are trying to see if plants can provide the same benefits in outer space.

Scientists from the University of Florida (UF) are partnering with the International Space Station to launch a capsule containing Arabidopsis plants into space, according to this article published by The Independent Florida Alligator. Faculty members from UF’s Horticultural Sciences Department of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences will use data from the experiment to determine how plants react to life in outer space.

Previous experiments conducted by the researchers have shown them that roots do grow in zero gravity environments, although in a skewed fashion that differs from root growth on Earth. Those involved in the project believe that not only will they learn new data about how plants grow in space, they’ll also uncover data that will help them understand the basics about life in space.

The ability to grow plant life in space has incredible implications for the future of our species and planet. Given the course of centuries, who knows where outer space gardens and farms can take us? The knowledge of growing food in difficult environments could even help us back here on Earth, where many regions sometimes experience food shortages because of drought or supply issues.

Here at Foliage Design Systems North Carolina, we’re interested in making Earth-bound spaces thrive with beautiful flowers and bountiful fauna that breathe life into any room. We offer our florist and interior floral design services in the areas of Wilmington, NC, eastern North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina, near Myrtle Beach.