Astronaut Scott Kelly of NASA has successfully managed to grow zinnia in space and it has become the first ever flower to bloom on the International Space Station today. The first attempt to grow zinnias started last year, but it was unsuccessful as the leaves became oddly curled and buds were covered in mold because of a leak in the plant container. However when Kelly took charge, their attempt to grow zinnia in space became a triumph.
Zinnia, officially is the first flower grown in space, but it’s not certainly the first crop to be tested in the space station’s hydroponic veggie lab. Astronauts first introduced red romaine lettuce for their veggie plant growth facility which was installed in 2014. Report says the third round of their experiments will include Chinese cabbage and more lettuce.
“Growing zinnia plants will help advance our knowledge of how plants flower in the Veggie growth system, and will enable fruiting plants like tomatoes to be grown and eaten in space using Veggie as the in-orbit garden,” said Trent Smith, program manager at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.