NASA exploring tomato production on the ISS
Added on 13 December 2022
The tomatoes will be grown in Profile Porous Ceramics (PPC) and Profile Products-produced Florikan controlled release fertilizer for improved plant health and growth.
The Red Robin tomatoes will be fertilized with a proprietary blend of Florikan CRF 14-4-14 T 180 day and T 100 day. The blend will be further supplemented with a Florikan high-potassium flowering special 0-0-19+9% Mg T 70 day flowering plant finisher in a controlled release fertilizer matrix. PPC provides the plant with a stabilized growing media to enhance the root zone for improved germination, increase oxygen levels, and improve water and nutrient retention.
The Red Robin tomatoes will also be grown on Earth as a controlled experiment using the same Florikan CRF and blends of PPC in school and home gardens as well as in KSC ground control labs. The crops will be compared to measure the effects of a zero-gravity environment on tomato growth. This will serve as a means to promote best management practices for sustainable agriculture on Earth.
Photo: A preflight view of Red Robin dwarf tomato growing in growing in Veggie hardware at the Kennedy Space Center. Credit: NASA