You expect a lot of things to be done in Space. But one thing that does not really come to mind is Agriculture. Thus, do you know that as part of one of the many experiments on the Issue, American astronaut, Scott Tingle is helping to grow several types of lettuce to see how micro gravity affects plant growth.
So you might ask what is in the experiment. They were growing red romaine lettuce (the kind you might get in a salad on earth), mizuna, also known as Japanese mustard greens, and Tokyo bekana cabbage.
Eventually, the astronauts on the ISS will eventually get to eat their space-grown greens, harvesting them using the cut-and-come-again method, where the outer most leaves are picked as needed, letting the centre of the lettuce or cabbage continue to grow. After that, some samples will be frozen and sent back to earth for further experimentation. Furthermore, They’ll look at what kind of bugs can grow on space veg and how growing plants affects the mood and morale of the astronauts.
All this is because as Nasa sets its sights on sending humans to Mars, space missions will get longer. Astronauts will probably have to supplement their traditional freeze dried diets with crops they’ve grown during the journey. Of course room on the ISS is limited, thus the astronauts are focusing on doing small-scale experiments to see how well their Veggie hardware works for growing produce.
If you want to see more amazing pictures of this new "space food", check out these twitter accounts, Scott D. Tingle (@Astro_Maker) and ISS Research (@ISS_Research). You would not be disappointed.