Nowadays the pollution of soil by trace metals from the mining industry is one of the biggest threats to ecosystems and human health. In this study, sixteen native wild plant species growing in Cu contaminated soils of mining region in Armenia were investigated to reveal their phytoremediation potential for restoration of soils in this area. During the investigation soil main characteristics affecting the Cu accumulation capability of plants were also determined. In roots (dry weight) of dominant plant species growing in Cu contaminated areas the content of copper varied between 55 mg/kg (Hypericum perforatum) and 775 mg/kg (Thymus kotschyanus), and in shoots of plants - in the range from 33 mg/kg (Teucrium orientale) to 243 mg/kg (Phleum pratense). Since the Cu accumulation capability of plants depends both on physiological peculiarities of plants and on the content of Cubioavailable in the soil, the studies were carried out in this direction and it was found that the high contents of organic matter and clay in the soil facilitated the decrease of the ratio Cubioavailable/Cutotal and as a result - the decrease of Cu accumulation capability of plants. Thymus kotschyanus, Phleum pratense, and Achillea millefolium had the highest phytostabilization potential from all studied plant species due to high bioconcentration factor of root (BCFroot) and low translocation factor (TF) values registered in these plants, and further field and laboratory experiments are planned to confirm this useful ability. The detection of phytoremediation potential of wild plant species growing in areas polluted by trace metals will enable us to use eco-friendly and cost-effective remediation methods, utterly required to clean up the soils in the mining regions of Armenia.
Environmental Pollution – Elsevier
Published: Jun 1, 2019
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