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Trace elements bioavailability to winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) grown subsequent to high biomass plants in a greenhouse study

Neu, Silke, Müller, Ingo, Herzig, Rolf, Dudel, E. Gert
International journal of phytoremediation 2018 v.20 no.6 pp. 574-580
Brassica napus, Helianthus annuus, Triticum aestivum, agricultural land, agricultural soils, arsenic, bioavailability, bioenergy, biomass production, cadmium, crop rotation, crops, farmers, forage, greenhouse experimentation, income, lead, mutagenesis, phytoaccumulation, plant cultural practices, polluted soils, rhizosphere, soil pH, winter, winter wheat, zinc
Multielement-contaminated agricultural land requires the adaptation of agronomic practices to meet legal requirements for safe biomass production. The incorporation of bioenergy plants with, at least, moderate phytoextraction capacity into crop rotations with cereals can affect trace elements (TE) phytoavailability and, simultaneously, constitute economic revenues for farmers outside the food or forage sector. Hence, in a crop rotation pot study sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.), modified for high biomass and TE accumulation by chemical mutagenesis, was compared to winter oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) as pre-crop. On two agricultural soils with different TE loads, the crops´ potential for phytoextraction and for impacts on TE uptake by subsequent winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) was studied. The results showed that rape tolerated high-level mixed contamination with metals (Cd, Pb and Zn) and As more than sunflower. In both soils, labile metals concentration increased and soil acidity remained high following sunflower. Furthermore, enhanced grain As accumulation in subsequent wheat was observed. By contrast, soil acidity and Cd or Zn accumulation of subsequent wheat decreased following rape. In the short term, moderate phytoextraction was superimposed by nutrient use or rhizosphere effects of pre-crops, which should be carefully monitored when designing crop rotations for contaminated land.