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Sci Total Environ. 2013 Feb 1;444:263-70. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.11.085. Epub 2012 Dec 27.

Residual effects of EDDS leachates on plants during EDDS-assisted phytoremediation of copper contaminated soil.

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College of Life Sciences, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China.


In this study, a novel experimental setup (one pot placed above another) was used to investigate the residual effects of EDDS application on plant growth and metal uptake. Two plant species, garland chrysanthemum and ryegrass, were grown in the upper pots (mimicking the upper soil layers) and were harvested 7 days after EDDS application. During this period the upper pots were watered twice. The lower pots (mimicking the subsoil under the upper soil layers) served as leachate collectors. Thereafter, the two pots were separated, and the same plants were grown in the upper and lower pots in two continuous croppings. Results showed that EDDS application restrained the growth of the first crop and resulted in a dramatic enhancement of Cu accumulation in plants grown in the upper pots. However, no negative growth effects were identified for the second and third crops, which were harvested 81 and 204 days after the EDDS application, respectively. In the lower pots, the leachate from the upper pots after EDDS application exhibited the increased total and CaCl(2)-extractable Cu concentrations in the soil. However, the growth of garland chrysanthemum and ryegrass, and their shoot Cu concentrations were unaffected. These data suggest that the residual risk associated with EDDS application was limited, and that subsoil to which EDDS leachate was applied may exhibit reduced Cu bioavailability for plants due to the biodegradation of EDDS.

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