Sir Isaac Newtons tree shard makes space voyage

A British astronaut has taken a section of an apple tree into space, the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has revealed.

Piers Sellers spent 12 days on the space shuttle Atlantis and the International Space Station with a shard of the tree Sir Isaac Newton used to test his theory of gravity.

The astronaut took the 10cm fragment into a zero-gravity environment before returning it to earth, where it is now being displayed by the RHS as part of its 350th anniversary celebrations.

Those keen to see the original tree – a rare Flower of Kent cooking apple variety – can find it standing at Sir Isaacs former home, Woolsthorpe Manor in Lincolnshire.

A respected scientist, Newton proved his theories about gravity after watching an apple fall to the ground from the famous tree.

Meanwhile, garden and greenhouse enthusiasts are being encouraged by the RHS to take part in the Big Butterfly Count, which forms part of Save Our Butterflies Week from July 24th.