Phytoremediation: You can grow plants that help eliminate radiation in the soil

Sunday, June 19, 2011 by: J. McDonough-Horton
Tags: phytoremediation, radiation, health news

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) Concerns about radioactive materials accumulating in soil and water since the nuclear accident in Japan this year have led individuals to look at natural ways to clean their property of possible radiation. One method worthy of examination is phytoremediation. Phytoremediation uses plants to detoxify areas contaminated by the accumulation of hazardous substances, heavy metals and pollutants such as radioactive material.

Remediation using various plants relies on the plants ability to draw material out of the soil through their roots and up into their stalks, leaves and flowers. Some plants are particularly adept at leeching heavy metals and radiation from soil and water. The prospect of using plants to clean up radioactive messes is attractive because plants are a natural, economical means to restore areas contaminated by radiation. In the face of nuclear accidents like the ongoing ecological disaster at Fukushima, this is especially important.

Other methods of removing radioactive materials from soils involve excavating the soil, disposing of it, or washing it with chemicals and returning it to the site. Both alternatives are damaging to the environment for numerous reasons that include the loss of topsoil and pollution caused by chemical treatments. Furthermore disposing large quantities of contaminated soil is costly and impractical for small communities or individuals.

In many cases, using plants to reduce levels of radiation and heavy metals is an effective and cost efficient means to do so. Many entities including governments, industries, and local communities have used phytoremediation successfully. For example, plant life at the site of the Chernobyl disaster demonstrated the ability to absorb massive amounts of radioactive material including radioactive iodine, strontium, cesium-137 and plutonium.

Clean up efforts at Chernobyl after the April of 1986, nuclear explosion included the use of sunflowers that absorbed radionuclides up through their roots from contaminated bodies of water. Phytoremediation in bodies of water is referred to as rhizofiltration. The success of using plants to cleanup radioactive material at Chernobyl gives promise to the use of phytoremediation at Fukushima and at other sites where radioactive materials are present.

Phytostabilization is another means in which plants can be used to reduce the impact of radiation on local environments. Plants are used to reduce erosion due to wind and rain and thereby keep radioactive materials from migrating to a wider area. The plants also absorb radioactive materials in the process. If a radioactive spill happens in an isolated area this is especially useful.

While phytoremediation is promising, it is not without problems. For example, saturated biomass still has to be disposed of properly. Plants chosen for phytoremediation should be chosen to be unappealing to foragers who may put radionuclides back into the food chain. Biomass must be treated as dangerous waste and cannot be composted back into the garden. Burning the harvested material alone is not a solution either, as the ash itself will be saturated with potentially toxic levels of radiation.

Is using phytoremediation a practical way for individuals to clean up their property?

Phytoremediation could be used to clean up individual, privately owned property that has been exposed to radiation providing that the problems associated with disposal of materials could be minimized, overcome or resolved. For the home owner trying to clean soil or water that has only modest levels of radiation some of the following plants may be beneficial; sunflowers, barley, alfalfa, fennel, sugar beets, spinach, lettuce and mustard. The plants that are harvested should not be consumed nor should they be composted back into the garden because radiation is concentrated as it progresses from soil or water into the food chain. Furthermore, the area being treated for radiation should be isolated from foraging animals such as deer.

For more information on phytoremediation check out these links;

Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.

Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...


Now Available at

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...


Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...


Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at

Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source:

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.