Space Shuttle Tree Coming to Shrewsbury
A tree germinated in space will find a permanent home at Shrewsbury Boro School.
It came from outer space. The tree did, that is.
Shrewsbury recently announced that it is the recipient of a five to six-foot tall White Pine germinated from a seed that flew 1.5 million miles through space.
In 1997, Astronaut Gregory T. Linteris, a New Jersey native, took a few dozen seeds with him aboard Space Shuttle Columbia. Once the crew safely returned to earth, the seeds were turned over to the New Jersey Forestry Service, which has been growing them ever since.
According to the Shrewsbury Shade Tree Commission, the space pine seeds germinated in half of the time it takes earthbound pine seeds to germinate.
Councilman Tom Menapace said the tree will be planted at Shrewsbury Boro School in an Earth Day ceremony on April 21, nothing that the prospect of owning a space tree is exceptionally cool.
The tree is one of 36 to have been grown from the the space seeds. Many have ended up or are destined for schools throughout the state, including Freehold and West Long Branch, among others.