Astronauts grow radishes on the International Space Station

Astronaut Kate Rubins harvested 20 radishes aboard the International Space Station on Monday — taking one giant step toward zero-gravity farming.

The out-of-this-world radishes join a long list of produce that astronauts have managed to grow aboard the ISS.

The current list includes red romaine lettuce, green lettuce, Chinese cabbage, lentils and mustard according to CNN.

“I’ve worked on APH since the beginning, and each new crop that we’re able to grow brings me great joy because what we learn from will help NASA send astronauts to Mars and bring them back safely,” Nicole Dufour, the Advanced Plant Habitat program manager at Kennedy Space Center said in a press release.

The purpose behind being able to grow food in space is to be able to send astronauts into space on long journeys to either the moon or Mars without having to worry about a limited supply of food.

Back on Earth, scientists are growing radishes of their own to compare nutrient and mineral levels when the astronauts return home.

“Radishes provide great research possibilities by virtue of their sensitive bulb formation,” principal investigator on the project Karl Hasenstein said.

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