The Effect of Heavy Metal Contaminated Soil on Growth and Development of Perennial Grasses
1 Department of Grasses, Legumes and Energy Plants, Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute, National Research Institute, Radzików, Poland
2 Department of Environmental Biotechnology, Phytoremediation Team, Institute for Ecology of Industrial Areas, Katowice, Poland
3 Department of Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute, National Research Institute, Radzików, Poland
Contamination of agricultural land in Poland by heavy metals is not a general problem but is limited to industrial areas. In regions of long history of industrial emission, of elevated levels of lead, cadmium, zinc and other ions during coal and ore mining and processing, as for example in Silesia, about 10 % of agricultural land may be characterized by exceeded maximum residue limits for Cd, Pb, Cu, Ni and Zn ions. Since the maintenance of agricultural areas in those regions is important from an ecological standpoint, the alternative farming activities are needed. Perennial grass biomass production for energy purposes is currently the best solution for majority of agricultural areas not suitable for food production in Poland. Along with increasing knowledge on separation and utilization of heavy metals (HM) during and after biomass processing, phytoremediation of polluted soils will become important and valuable. To detect the effect of soil HM ions concentration on growth and development of selected, tall growing and high biomass yielding perennial grass cultivars, the chlorophyll fluorescence parameters were registered. The elevated content of Pb, Cd and Zn ions in soil influenced on decrease of: minimal (Fo), maximal (Fm) and variable (Fv) fluorescence level as well as on total complementary area on a diagram of chlorophyll a fluorescence induction curve (Area). Based on detected parameters it was concluded, that the high level of HM ions in soils negatively affected the efficiency of photosynthesis. Therefore, plant growth, as well as development of generative shoots and finally the biomass yield were reduced in some cultivars. Among tested cultivars different reaction for HM ions in polluted soil were noted: from only slightly modified parameters of photosynthesis and unreduced yield (Elytrigia elongata cv. Bamar and Arrhenatherum elatius cv. Wiwena) to significantly reduced Fo, Fv, Fm and biomass yield (Bromus carinathus cv. Broma and Bromus inermis cv. Brudzyńska).
Key words: biomass / phytoremediation / tall wheat grass / brome grass / tall fescue
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2013
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