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the first time ever, plants from Earth are growing the moon. The China National Space Administration showed photos cotton seeds sprouting life. The administration said the cotton plants were several plants that were "growing well". Other plants that are now growing the moon are potatoes, rock cress and rapeseed. The plants are part a project on China's space mission to the far side the moon. The project is called a "moon surface micro-ecological circle". Project leader Liu Hanlong says the cotton seeds were the first to sprout. He said the plants were chosen because they were small, strong and could grow the difficult conditions the moon's surface.

Professor Hanlong said the project's aim was to understand more how plants grow outside Earth. The long-term aim is to develop plants that can grow the moon or on planets Mars. The professor said: "We have given consideration to future survival space. Learning about these plants growing a low-gravity environment would allow us to lay the foundation our future establishment a space base." The project also includes yeast and fruit flies. The professor hopes the six organisms the project will make up a mini-ecosystem. The plants will produce oxygen and food the fruit flies, and the yeast could manage the flies' waste and the dead plants to provide another food source.

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