SREL Reprint #0453




Radiocesium Levels in Vegetation Colonizing a Contaminated Floodplain

Charles T. Garten, Jr., Linda A. Briese, Richard A. Geiger, Rebecca R. Sharitz, and Michael H. Smith



Radiocesium concentrations in herbaceous and woody plants inhabiting a floodplain contaminated by nuclear production reactor effluents were measured.  Leaves and stems of herbaceous plants (Andropogon sp. and Scirpus cyperinus) contained higher concentrations of radiocesium than those of woody plants (Alnus serraluta, Myrice cerifera, and Salix nigra).  Andropogon and Alnus fruits had higher concentrations than the leaves or stems.  Radiocesium concentrations in fruits and leaves were significantly correlated with stem radiocesium levels in some or all of the species sampled.  Mean radiocesium levels in the plant parts exceeded mean soil concentrations; this indicates concentration of radiocesium by the vegetation.


SREL Reprint #0453

Garten, C.T., Jr., L.A. Briese, R.A. Geiger, R.R. Sharitz, and M.H. Smith. 1975. Radiocesium levels in vegetation colonizing a contaminated floodplain. p. 489-497. In Mineral Cycling in Southeastern Ecosystems, edited by F.G. Howell, J.B. Gentry, and M.H. Smith. ERDA Symposium Series. CONF 740513.

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