2008 Student Research Conference:
21st Annual Student Research Conference

Phytoremediation: Studies of the Potential of Plants and Soil Amendments
Sarah E. Bloch
Dr. Barbara K. Kramer, Faculty Mentor

Phytoextraction is a proposed alternative to current remediation techniques for lead-contaminated soil. A plant used in lead phytoextraction must accumulate a high mass of lead in the shoot. Physalis heterophylla has been found to naturally accumulate a high concentration of lead; however, this species is not commonly cultivated. Three related, more commonly cultivated species—Physalis philadelphica, Physalis peruviana, and Physalis pruinosa—were grown in a greenhouse in soils contaminated with various concentrations of lead to determine their potential for use in lead phytoextraction. Results will be presented. For plants which do not naturally accumulate lead, soil amendments, which enhance lead bioavailability and movement within the plant, may be used to increase lead accumulation. Biodegradable amendments EDDS, humic acid, and octanoic acid were tested as alternatives to the non-biodegradable EDTA for their ability to enhance lead accumulation in soybeans. EDDS combined with octanoic acid shows potential for use in lead phytoextraction.

Keywords: phytoextraction, plants, soybean, lead, soil, contamination, remediation, amendments

Topic(s):Environmental Studies

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 43-2
Location: VH 1432
Time: 3:00

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