Saturday, July 30, 2011

Plants Dying in the Middle of Central Tokyo

Radiation? Who knows. One irony of the radioactive fallout from Fukushima I Nuke Plant is that people in Japan have started to pay much more attention to nature around them. So they may be noticing things that was on-going even before the accident. Or they may not.

These are the pictures taken on the sidewalk on Hakusan Dori in Bunkyo-ku in Tokyo, and uploaded on July 30. The air radiation in Bunkyo-ku has been higher than the official Tokyo number (measured in Shinjuku-ku, western central Tokyo), along with several other eastern "ku" (special wards of Tokyo).

The person who took the pictures says, "About 30% of azaleas on the side walk are completely dead. Ginkgo leaves are browning."

Dead azaleas:

Browning ginkgo leaves:

(h/t Dr. Ono)


Anonymous said...

I can imagine Dr. Yamashita saying that these plants were not happy enough and that is the reason that they got sick, it is not due to the black rain or the fallouts of radioactive particles. He will count a total of 0 person sick of radiation, all the books and the only books of record of sick person due to fukushima radiactive fallouts will count a total of 0 person. This is because he will have make sure that all sick person with symptoms of contamination, will be designated as sick because they are weak, stressed or sad. That would be normal by the way, to be sad, stressed or sad in these time. Since he is in charge of the control in Fukushima, he will make sure that is how it will be recorded.

Anonymous said...

fuck yamashita!!!! rubbish shit !!!

Anonymous said...

Can you say "pollution"? I knew you could. You can probably say "Dried out", too.

Anonymous said...

I agree it is a bit of a stretch to think that these plants in Bunkyo Ward browned out due to radiation.

That said, those azaleas are clearly several years old and if they survived last summer (which was horrific-- lots of plants and even trees that somehow make it through the blazing summer every year died last year) then they should have made it through this summer so far. We had enough of a dry spell through to mid-July to dry shrubs out (to make the leaves droop, but not wither them). But most definitely not dry enough to kill them.

I know this personally because as an avid gardener I pay attention to the plants in my neighborhood, and I spent the weekend before the most recent typhoon hauling about 50 buckets of water to the plants at the nearby apartment complex, where the plants were drying out, but were not withered and most certainly not dead yet. (I live about 30km from Bunkyo ward, so the rainfall is roughly the same.)

I don't think these photos are conclusive of anything, but who knows, they might be one piece of a bigger puzzle that we have yet to see.

We are still learning a lot about the effects of radiation on living things, as evidenced by the newly-acquired knowledge that cesium does not deposit itself evenly throughout muscle tissue, and therefore a single test showing that beef is "safe" to eat is not necessarily valid for the entire cow.

In the same way we may be about to discover which plants are more susceptible to radiation than others.

Anonymous said...

I think its hard to say they are dieing from a harsh summer when its pretty clear the plants around them are very very green. I am an avid gardener myself and have a vegetable garden of about 30 plants all in pots out back. Those spots on those leaves could only occur if water had magnified intense sunlight and burned the plant. I really doubt that is the case. If its so bad then those green plants around the dead ones would absolutely have to show signs like yellowing or less of a dark green leaf. Some plants are a lot more susceptible to things and here in NC on the blue ridge parkway we can see plants that have ozone spots while others look just fine. Face the fact those 3 reactors are still pouring out radiation further contaminating all of Japan. I am 28 and I will never ever ever go to Japan until I am old and I have a degree from an accredited university in Environmental Health which allows me to make solid judgements regarding exposure to radiation. Maybe when we have another disease like 'Itai Itai' or break bone fever named after those that suffer from this radiation the Japanese people will wake up and save their country from the government.

Anonymous said...

Cesium depositing itself un-evenly through the body is not newly-acquired knowledge. Its knowledge the public didn't have because they aren't trained or educated in such matters. Hell the Soviet Union treated their people better than they are in Japan and its a real shame.

Doyu Shonin/Risa Bear said...

Facebook refused to allow this link to be posted to ENENEWS' page there, btw. Had to trick up the link with [dot] and such.

Anonymous said...

There is a plant,a variety of Spiderwort, which has scientific studies showing it's color changes due to radiation(stamens change from blue to pink). Dr. Sadao Ichikawa, of Saitama University, Japan discovered thius property. Since the work was done in Japan, there should be plants planted there. Can someone determine if the plants are still blue, and not showing the pink stamens showing exposure danger? see:
Spiderwort and Radiation detection
A cloned species of spiderwort, a roadside wildflower, changes color
from blue to pink when exposed to about the same radiation dosage as
permitted by federal guidelines.

The flower has become popular with the antinuclear movement and is being
planted by the thousands near nuclear plants worldwide.

Dr. Sadao Ichikawa, of Saitama University in Japan, was the geneticist
who discovered the radiation change.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@anon at 11:36AM, I'll ask the Japanese readers.

Anonymous said...

Was the liquifaction an element in this phenomena or can it be ruled out?

Has there been increased salinity of the soil and groundwater or is there no evidence for that?

Has there been drought or prolonged rains or not?

Has there been an increased incidence of herbicide use or an increase in pathogens or not?

Are stray dogs more prevalent or not?

If all these things are ruled out then what remains is probably not worth bothering voters with as it could well be the result of deadly radioactive fallout.

Anonymous said...

I think the plants look beautiful! Dying plants have the most interesting colors as the life is being burned out of them!

I can't wait to see what the Japanese people will begin to look like if the plants look like this! Think of all the colors and growths inside and outside, all the people will have very soon....all TEPCO created!

Anonymous said...

If after heavy rain or drought in a cycle , combined with soil liquefaction the Azalea will respond. Their roots are at the top of the soil , four inches or so and they cannot handle poor drainage.

Anonymous said...

Azaleas require acid, calcium-poor soils for healthy growth. If soil shown was not acidified with ammonium sulfate, for example, excess calcium leaching from surrounding concrete can cause them to die.

Anonymous said...

stop being merchants,start being samurai

Anonymous said...

I have made many, many paid consultations on plant pathologies and would advise all people to evaluate what they observe, not only in the ways commenters did about Japanese gardening, rainfall and drought,micronutrients and herbicides, but in referring to known contaminations such as around Chernobyl, Chelyabinsk, Hanford, Berkeley campus, and other radiated areas. Without known syndromes from radiation you only have speculation about symptoms. Anyway, you really do not need to prove that plants are affected when, if you need a reality check, you can look at the babies from Fallujah or Belarus, or in time, Fukushima. That will be chilling evidence right there of what meltdown and no coverup entombment, just imagine!! Are we in la la land or what? Coming soon to Honshu as the fetuses develop in that horrible radiation overburden. It is very predictable, everyone loses a little to radiation, all ionizing radiation is harmful. You pay the price for nuclear fission, a thousand times over.

Anonymous said...

It takes time for radiation to manifest it self.

Thats why the stress no observing your imidiate suroundings. Everything from Insects to plants.
If this is a episode not remebered or normal. If this has not been obsevred earlyer, its highly probable that its done by Radioactiv isotops.

Small dams or pols are a starting point to look, a dead pole or a dead river(i have seen that, and its dead, no bugs no nothing), see for life, if life is not present, then you can be shore its because of radiation.
And lookfor spiders, a creature that is affected by radiation exposure.
If your pets start to be sick, luse hair, luse wight, or is generaly in a bad shape.
Its serious and highly probably cused by radiation.

Remeber and compare to the present situation and dont forgett, that you beath the same air and drink the same water.

Anonymous said...

If radiation were killing plants this quickly in Tokyo, the prefecture of Fukushima would be a desert already.

Anonymous said...

wake me up - when people are dying like flies..

Anonymous said...

does the microflore exhibit population and specie changes due to radiation[man-made]in their environment..........

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