Image Source: Scott Kelly.
The first flower to bloom on a spacecraft greeted the sun for the first time today on the International Space Station. I'm not surprised it's a zinnia (an edible orange variety). Zinnias are hardy, easy to grow, and beautiful. They are a genus of the sunflower tribe in Asteraceae, also known as the aster or daisy family. This one survived a crisis mold infestation in December 2015; its flower bud appeared on 12 January 2016.
"Autonomous gardening” - how @StationCDRKelly dealt with mold in the #ISS garden. https://t.co/tRizX5sXVq pic.twitter.com/ccTsG6FrkP— Michael Oman-Reagan (@OmanReagan) January 17, 2016
NASA's page on the space flower garden is here. People are discussing the plant on Twitter under the hashtag #spaceflower. NASA astronaut Scott Kelly is caring for the plant. The flower garden project is part of the joint NASA-Roscosmos ISS Year Long Mission, which involves experienced astronauts Kelly and Mikhail Korniyenko conducting tests and experiments to assess human physical and psychological health over long periods in preparation for extended missions to Mars. For my previous post on space gardens and space farming, go here.
See all my posts about the International Space Station.