Join the New Zealand Astrobiology Network to learn how seeds grow in space on the International Space Station.

Grow plants

like an astronaut

Join us in an out-of-this-world experiment as we explore the effect of microgravity on plants. This is your chance to grow seeds in concert with astronauts aboard the International Space Station!

in 2021




In 2021, astronauts aboard the International Space Station are undertaking a plant-growth experiment with basil seeds. 

The Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) has sent us some seeds from the exact same batch as those being flown into space, to give you a chance to perform your own experiments here on Earth. 

Grow your own ‘space seeds’ and compare the differences. 

How do seeds grow in space?

How does gravity affect seeds grown on Earth?

Follow along as the astronauts tend to the seeds on the ISS – and spot the differences and similarities with your own seeds’ growth. 


order your seeds and join the experiment

You will receive a packet of Ocimum basilicum seeds for your school. 

Seeds are free to order as we only charge a flat rate of $6 for postage and packaging. We do have a limit on the amount of seeds available, so sign up quickly. Multiple classes from a single school are welcome to participate, we simply ask that each teacher registers for the distribution list – so we know who’s involved and can ensure information is effectively communicated to everyone. If you want to undertake a larger project within your school, please register and put “999” in the number of students and we’ll get in touch to discuss it. 

You have our ongoing support

We provide an online talk about growing plants in space and astrobiology to start with and help you along the way with the experiment. 

Seeds in Space 2021

The primary purpose of this project is to promote the understanding of space biology. You will learn how the sprouts of basil grow in a microgravity environment. Your mission is to nurture your own seedlings on the ground and observe their shape, then compare with the downlinked image of space grown basil to find out how plants respond to gravity.

Our partners

This programme has been made possible thanks to JAXA and Kibo-ABC.

General Information

About the Seeds in Space Programme


The following links are provided by the 

Japanese Space Agency, JAXA

Learn why we grow seeds in space and what you need to do at your school.

These links will open on the Japanese Space Agency website. 
  1. The significance of growing herbs in space
  2. Scent of herbs
  3. How to grow Sweet Basil
  4. Let’s experiment with Herb‼




February-March, 2021 Space experiment in the Kibo module
(Japanese astronaut Soichi NOGUCHI conducts the experiment.)
December 7, 2020 The seeds were launched to the ISS/Kibo on SpX-21
October 2020 The seeds were shipped from JAXA to NASA 
Until September 2020 Space Seeds were prepared to be sent to the ISS. 

If you need any support please get in touch!

Astronaut Soichi NOGUCHI grows basil in space.



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