Plants from Moon Dirt

The first ever plants grown from lunar dirt have sprouted, showing that farming on the moon is not an impossible task. The dirt was brought back to Earth during the Apollo missions 50 years ago. Plants sprouted using dirt from the Apollo 11, Apollo 12, and Apollo 17 missions. The plants have been growing in a small lab garden under LED lights and have been closely monitored by NASA. Lunar dirt is incredibly difficult to farm with because it’s full of metallic iron and shards of glass, and is lacking key nutrients. Though it’s an amazing feat that all the plants in lunar dirt sprouted, none of them sprouted as quickly or efficiently as plants in Earth dirt. Now NASA wants to know, what else can we successfully plant in lunar dirt?

Image via Tyler Jones IFAS/UF


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