Top tips for keeping that much loved Christmas plant alive. We've tested a plant sensor and mixed it up with some good old gardening knowledge...
There’s not liking your vegetables. And then there’s sending them to space.
Let’s face it. Turnips aren’t the most inspiring vegetable. It’s unlikely that they would make it into many people’s top 10. At some point, most children have probably hidden their uneaten (or, worse, regurgitated) turnips in their napkin, or under their spoon. Or plate. Or dog.
But it’s one thing secretly slipping your turnips into a pocket and quite another when you decide to rid of your turnips by sending them to space. But it turns out that NASA is doing just that.
It sort of reminds me of a time when our school was going to bury a time capsule and asked students for suggestions of what should go into it. While others suggested items like recent school photos and magazines, my friend nominated her Geography teacher, because she was small, representative of daily school life, and it would mean that she wouldn’t be able to teach boring lessons for at least 25 years.
But back to the space-bound turnips. NASA is sending turnips to space as part of a small technology demonstration unit to study the germination of plants on the moon; as well as turnips, the unit will contain basil seeds and rockcress. Once on the moon, the seeds will be watered and compared to plants back on earth. Although there’s quite a small sample initially, NASA is apparently ‘looking toward the scalability’ of this eclectic garden.
And I have to say, if that’s the future of the space diet, then you’ve got to feel for the volunteers hoping to move to Mars with the Mars One mission in 2024. Imagine arriving on Mars, with the knowledge that you can never return to Earth, and finding that the only foodstuffs are turnips, basil and rockcress. It doesn’t bear thinking about really.
(Especially since your fellows would probably be strange people nominated by their relatives. And a certain Geography Teacher).