The Philippine Space Agency (PhilSA) invited interested Filipino students from junior high schools in the National Capital Region (NCR) to #JoinTheMission of  Herb in Space  by showcasing their creative and science skills.    

By illustrating the journey of coriander seeds from Earth to space, and back, through a comic strip. Representatives of the winning schools shall participate in the seed briefing and turnover ceremony, and seed germination activities. Participating schools are expected to present their experiment results in a digital poster. 

Through the Space Seeds for Asian Future: AHiS, a project by the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF) Kibo-ABC initiative, various indigenous seeds from Asia-Pacific countries are sent to the Kibo module of the International Space Station (ISS) for research and experimentation. 

During its first mission, seeds were grown in the Kibo module for a month and then returned to Earth for analysis. For its second mission, seeds were stored in the Kibo module for seven months before being returned to participating organizations on Earth for research. 

The AHiS project provides students and young researchers in the Asia-Pacific region the opportunity to learn about space biology and conduct their own experiments on space seeds.  

As a member of the Kibo-ABC, the PhilSA participates in AHiS through its Herb in Space competition. Students from junior high schools in Metro Manila were invited to share their ideas on the journey of space-cultivated coriander seeds from Earth to space and then back. The Herb in Space contest is made possible with the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF) Kibo-ABC who brought seeds from various Asia-Pacific countries and regions into space. 

Growing plants in space is important for long-term space missions, since these can provide food for astronauts and help improve their mental well-being. Several factors in the space environment, such as changes in gravity, radiation, reduced nutrient supply, and limited water recycling, influence the plant’s growth and development. The seeds’ genetic makeup may be altered, which could lead to changes in the plants’ subcellular and phenotypic levels and physiological adaptation to stress.  

Check out the winning entries of the Herb in Space comic strip contest: 

1st Place: A Coriander’s Galactic Roadtrip
Student: Eunice Viado
Supervisor: Norwena Eugenio
V. Mapa High School

2nd Place: The Green Space: Future of Interstellar Agriculture
Student: Von Adriel Briones
Supervisor: Paul Anton Mahinay
Pasig Catholic College


3rd Place: Super Coriander
Students: Alliah Isabelle Cabrera, Azlynn Courtney Fernandez, Calista Hannah Pedragosa, Dana Charlotte Palmario, Marciella Elyse Martin, Nathanie Winzet Lumitap, Nouel Christian Amaguin, Sophia Margareth Viloria, Sophie Gabriela Alberto, Seanna Rafaelle Medina, Josephine Mikaela Segarra, Jacob Andrei Pascual, John Emmanuel Dorol, and Paolo Xendricz Rivera
Supervisor: Ana Lorena Bautista
Manila Science High School


4th Place: Student: Pia Karla Pelicano
Supervisor: Alvin Ilunio
St. Louis College of Valenzuela

5th Place: Return of the Seeds
Student: Ramoncito Ramos Jr
Supervisor: Charlotte Rovelyn Torres
Carlos Albert High School

6th Place: Students: Julia Catlyn Piquero, Brigette Valerio, Jasmine Barrientos, Christine Abbygael Garganta, Yukina Asaka, Anika Mindanao, Annika De Silva, and Sarah Sapon
Supervisor: Larry Irorita
Lagro High School


7th Place: Syd’s Unexpected Space Adventure
Students: Bryant Lavapie, Juana Luna, Marrah Althea Montero, Micaiah Adriel Cruz, and Brylle Jacob Beragsang
Supervisor: Mary Shelle Rodriguez
Cayetano Arellano High School

8th Place: Once in a Space Time
Student: Rian Cloie Zantua
Supervisor: Mylha Baltazar
Mariano Gomes National High School

9th Place: Seeds of the Future
Students: Samantha Elise Carpio, Denise Brucal, Alexa Bismanos, Sazza Espino, Althea Caniedo, and Venice Pambid
Supervisor: Justin Riofrancia Alvarez
Montessori Academy of Valenzuela

10th Place: Journey of Coriander Seed
Students: Kassandra Puetenegra and Rhed Andrei Quilla
Supervisor: Babie Noreen Clemente
Batasan Hills National High School