Chemically enhanced phytoextraction of Pb by wheat in texturally different soils Article uri icon


  • A pot study was used to examine the effects of amendments such as EDTA and elemental sulfur on the growth potential, gas exchange features, uptake and mobilization of Pb by wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) in two texturally different contaminated soils at three levels of EDTA (2, 4, 8 mmol kg(-1) dry soil) and two levels of elemental sulfur (100, 200 mmol kg(-1) dry soil). EDTA resulted in more solubilization of Pb than elemental sulfur in both soils. Application of EDTA and elemental sulfur increased shoot dry matter in the loamy sand soil, whereas in the sandy clay loam soil EDTA treated plants produced lower shoot dry matter compared to that observed with elemental sulfur. Application of EDTA 10d prior to harvest increased the amount of Pb accumulated into wheat shoots with more Pb accumulated by plants from the loamy sand than from the sandy clay loam soil. However, evaluation of the relative extraction efficiency expressed as the percentage of solubilized Pb that is subsequently also effectively accumulated by the plant shoots reveals that the relatively low efficiency does not warrant the massive mobilization induced by the environmentally persistent EDTA chelator. More modest mobilization of Pb induced by elemental sulfur and the higher relative extraction of mobilized Pb therefore deserves further attention in future research. In particular, attention needs to be paid to determining soil types in which elemental sulfur can induce significant impact on soil pH and metal mobility after application of a practically realistic dosage.

publication date

  • 2010