Satoshi Furukawa, a Japanese astronaut, has said that he will try to grow cucumbers aboard the International Space Station (ISS) when he arrives there later this week.

Furukawa will be departing from earth on Wednesday to begin a six month long mission on board together with Russian Sergei Volkov and American Michael Fossum.

The reason for his experiment is to learn out how future space explorers can harvest their own food.

Astronauts have been told not to eat the space cucumbers, however.

We wish we were able to eat the cucumbers, but we have not been allowed, Furukawa said.

Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi, who is in Baikonur, Khazakstan for the Wednesday launch, said he made his own sushi aboard the space station last year. He is escorting Furukawa's family on Wednesday. Fossum, Furukawa and Volkov will be returning to earth in mid-November.