Paavo Pelkonen


2 Assessment of Growth Variation and Phytoextraction Potential of Four Salix Varieties Grown in Zn Contaminated Soil Amended with Lime and Wood Ash

Authors: Ari Pappinen, Muhammad Mohsin, Mir Md Abdus Salam, Pertti Pulkkinen, Paavo Pelkonen


Soils contaminated with metals, e.g., copper (Cu), zinc (Zn) and nickel (Ni) are one of the main global environmental problems. Zn is an important element for plant growth, but excess levels may become a threat to plant survival. Soils polluted with metals may also pose risks and hazards to human health. Afforestation based on short rotation Salix crops may be a good solution for the reduction of metals toxicity levels in the soil and in ecosystem restoration of severely polluted sites. In a greenhouse experiment, plant growth and zinc (Zn) uptake by four Salix cultivars grown in Zn contaminated soils collected from a mining area in Finland were tested to assess their suitability for phytoextraction. The sequential extraction technique and inductively coupled plasma‒mass spectrometry (ICP–MS) were used to determine the extractable metals and evaluate the fraction of metals in the soil that could be potentially available for plant uptake. The cultivars displayed resistance to heavily polluted soils throughout the whole experiment. After uptake, the total mean Zn concentrations ranged from 776 to 1823 mg kg⁻¹. The average uptake percentage of Zn across all cultivars and treatments ranged from 97 to 223%. Lime and wood ash addition showed a significant effect on plant dry biomass growth and metal uptake percentage of Zn in most of the cultivars. The results revealed that Salix cultivars have the potential to accumulate and take up significant amounts of Zn. Ecological restoration of polluted soils could be environmentally favorable in conjunction with economically profitable practices, such as forestry and bioenergy production. As such, the utilization of Salix for phytoextraction and bioenergy purposes is of considerable interest.

Keywords: lime, zinc, phytoextraction, wood ash, Salix

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1 Effects of Lime and N100 on the Growth and Phytoextraction Capability of a Willow Variety (S. Viminalis × S. Schwerinii × S. Dasyclados) Grown in Contaminated Soils

Authors: Ari Pappinen, Muhammad Mohsin, Pertti Pulkkinen, Mir Md. Abdus Salam, Paavo Pelkonen


Soil and water pollution caused by extensive mining practices can adversely affect environmental components, such as humans, animals, and plants. Despite a generally positive contribution to society, mining practices have become a serious threat to biological systems. As metals do not degrade completely, they require immobilization, toxicity reduction, or removal. A greenhouse experiment was conducted to evaluate the effects of lime and N100 (11-amino-1-hydroxyundecylidene) chelate amendment on the growth and phytoextraction potential of the willow variety Klara (S. viminalis × S. schwerinii × S. dasyclados) grown in soils heavily contaminated with copper (Cu). The plants were irrigated with tap or processed water (mine wastewater). The sequential extraction technique and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) tool were used to determine the extractable metals and evaluate the fraction of metals in the soil that could be potentially available for plant uptake. The results suggest that the combined effects of the contaminated soil and processed water inhibited growth parameter values. In contrast, the accumulation of Cu in the plant tissues was increased compared to the control. When the soil was supplemented with lime and N100; growth parameter and resistance capacity were significantly higher compared to unamended soil treatments, especially in the contaminated soil treatments. The combined lime- and N100-amended soil treatment produced higher growth rate of biomass, resistance capacity and phytoextraction efficiency levels relative to either the lime-amended or the N100-amended soil treatments. This study provides practical evidence of the efficient chelate-assisted phytoextraction capability of Klara and highlights its potential as a viable and inexpensive novel approach for in-situ remediation of Cu-contaminated soils and mine wastewaters. Abandoned agricultural, industrial and mining sites can also be utilized by a Salix afforestation program without conflict with the production of food crops. This kind of program may create opportunities for bioenergy production and economic development, but contamination levels should be examined before bioenergy products are used.

Keywords: lime, Copper, phytoextraction, Klara, N100

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