International Space Hall of Fame Moon Tree

Alamogordo, New Mexico

[Moon Tree] [Moon Tree]

A sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) was planted as part of the dedication of the International Space Hall of Fame on 5 October 1976. Unfortunately the tree has since died, supposedly due to a drought. The planting ceremony featured Astronaut Dr. Robert Ridley Parker and New Mexico Governor Jerry Apodaca. The initial planting was only ceremonial, the tree was to be planted permanently at the site after landscaping was complete. Phil Lucero, New Mexico Commissioner of Public Lands, gave a short history of the Moon Tree, and Parker read a proclamation from President Ford. Alamogordo Mayor Mike Glover was presented with a commemorative plaque.

New Mexico apparently received five Moon Trees in 1976, two Douglas firs and three sycamores. A 28-inch Douglas fir seedling was planted April 7 in the Civic Plaza in Albuquerque. The other Douglas fir, of about the same size, was planted on the state capitol grounds on 22 July. A sycamore was planted in Smokey Bear State Park on May 15, 1976. Another sycamore was planted at the International Space Hall of Fame in Alamogordo on October 5. The location of the other sycamore is in Silver City, New Mexico, planted August 15 in Gough Park. The sycamores in Alamogordo and Smokey Bear State Park are known to have died, as has the Douglas fir in Albuquerque. The status of the other two trees in not definitively known. For more information, see the individual tree pages and Moon Trees in New Mexico from the New Mexico State Records Center and Archive.

Clippings above credit Alamogordo Daily News (6 October 1976 and 26 September 1976)

Are New Mexico's moon trees still alive? - KOAT 7 News, 19 July 2019
New Mexico's 'moon trees' planted after Apollo 14 are lost - AP News, 23 July 2019
Moon Trees in New Mexico - New Mexico State Records Center and Archives

Other New Mexico Moon Trees

Albuquerque - Civic Center
Capitan - Smokey Bear Park
Santa Fe - Capitol Building
Silver City - Gough Park

International Space Hall of Fame
Moon Tree Home Page

Dr. David R. Williams,
NSSDCA, Mail Code 690.1
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Greenbelt, MD 20771

NASA Official: Dave Williams,
Last Updated: 07 February 2022, DRW