If you have read The Samson Effect, you know that it centers around the possibility that 3000 year old seeds could be preserved and still germinate. Well, that possibility just became more possible as of last week.
When I wrote The Samson Effect, I did a lot of research on the viability of dormant seeds. At that time, Lotus seeds found in a dry river bed in Manchuria which dated to be about 1300 hundred years old were found, and successfully grown. This was one of the pieces of research I included in The Samson Effect as the main characters searched for seeds that were supposedly 3000 years old. In fact, those of you who read The Samson Effect may remember the verbal sparring that Thomas and Michael engaged in when Thomas tried to convince Michael that 3000 year old dormant, but viable, seeds could exist. His strongest argument was that of the 1300 year old Lotus seeds that germinated.
Well, last week there was a news article about a scientist who successfully grew a tree dubbed The Methuselah Tree from 2000 year old seeds found in Masada by Dr. Sarah Sallon. You can read the news article, entitled, Tree From 2000-Year-Old Seed Is Doing Well, by clicking the article title. You can also read the press release that Dr. Sallon's organization, The Louis L. Borick Natural Medicine Research Center, issued about the tree.
It's always interesting for an author who creates fiction based in elements of fact to later find that science has actually taken a step toward his or her fiction. Now, this Methuselah Tree is living proof that the basis of my story is not far off from the realm of impossibility Who knows, maybe we are around the corner from finding dormant seeds that are 3000 years old.
That said, and as exciting as this is for me, I still stand by my preface in stating that what I wrote in The Samson Effect is simply fiction. Though I worked hard to superimpose my fiction over the Old Testament documents, I personally don't believe that this is the way things really happened. I just wanted to write an exciting story featuring the way it could have happened. Dr. Sallon just gave me stronger evidence that the way I played out my fiction is, indeed, viable.
BTW, I am in contact with Dr. Sallon now and I am looking forward to learning more from her and to get her feedback on The Samson Effect.