Seeds from space arriving at Portsmouth school as part of biology experiment

Pupils at The Portsmouth Grammar Junior School are preparing to become space biologists by growing seeds that have been into space.

In September, 2kg of rocket seeds were flown to the International Space Station where they spent several months in microgravity before returning to Earth on March 2 with Commander Scott Kelly of Nasa and Russian cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko and Sergey Volkov of Roscosmos.

The seeds will arrive in Portsmouth in the week commencing April 11.

They have been sent as part of Rocket Science, an educational project launched by the RHS Campaign for School Gardening and the UK Space Agency.

The Portsmouth Grammar Juniors will be one of up to 10,000 schools to receive a packet of seeds from space, which they will grow 
alongside seeds that haven’t been to space and measure the differences over seven weeks.

The pupils will not know which seed packet contains which seeds until all results have been collected by the RHS Campaign for School Gardening and analysed 
by professional biostatisticians.

Peter Hopkinson, head of the junior school, said: ‘We are very excited to be taking part in Rocket Science.

‘This experiment is a fantastic way of teaching our children to think more scientifically and share their findings with the whole school.’

The nationwide science experiment will enable the pupils to think more about the difficulties surrounding growing fresh food in challenging climates.