Uptake of heavy metals and As by Brassica juncea grown in a contaminated soil in Aznalcóllar (Spain): the effect of soil amendments.Environ Pollut. 2005 Nov; 138(1):46-58.EP
Two crops of Brassica juncea (L.) Czern. were grown in a field experiment, at the site affected by the toxic spillage of acidic, metal-rich waste in Aznalcóllar (Seville, Spain), to study its metal accumulation and the feasibility of its use for metal phytoextraction. The effects of organic soil amendments (cow manure and mature compost) and lime on biomass production and plant survival were also assessed; plots without organic amendment and without lime were used as controls. Plots, with or without organic amendment, having pH < 5 were limed for the second crop. Soil acidification conditioned plant growth and metal accumulation. The addition of lime and the organic amendments achieved higher plant biomass production, although effects concerning metal bioavailability and accumulation were masked somewhat by pH variability with time and between and within plots. Tissue metal concentrations of B. juncea were elevated for Zn, Cu and Pb, especially in leaves of plants from plots with low pH values (maxima of 2029, 71 and 55 microg g(-1), respectively). The total uptake of heavy metals in the plants was relatively low, emphasising the problems faced when attempting to employ phytoextraction for clean-up of pluri-contaminated sites.