Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Moon Tree

This tree in Monterey, California was grown from a seed carried by Apollo 14. Stuart Roosa carried the tiny seed as he orbited the Moon in the Command Module. After being raised at a nursery in Placerville, the seedling was planted here in 1976. The little seed has grown very quickly! Redwoods are the tallest living things on Earth, with the tallest known specimen reaching 114 meters.

The person by the tree had the honour of doing experiments with Lunar Sample 14003,96. This was a contingency sample brought back by Alan Shepard and Edgar Mitchell from the surface. Shepard later turned the sample handle into the famous golf club. Apollo 14 was also one of the missions bringing a Lunar Laser Ranging Experiment. Data from LLRE is direct evidence that the speed of light is slowing down. From small seeds grow great trees.

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