Minimizing Hazards of Heavy Metals in Vegetable Farms using Phytoremediation Technique

Sherine M. Shehata, Sahar M. Ismail and Alaa Zaghloul

Two techniques were applied in this work to minimize the hazards of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in three contaminated soils namely; chemical remediation represented by rock phosphate (PR) with phosphate dissolving bacteria (PDB), Montmorillonite modified clay mineral (MCM) and mixture of both chemical remediated materials, and intercropping technique represented by Radish (Raphanus raphanistrum) and Turnip (Brassica rapa). The selected soils suffered from different sources of pollution and varied types of heavy metals emitted to the agricultural ecosystem. Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) plants as an important economic agricultural crop in the studied region were taken in this work as an indicator to evaluate the applied techniques to remediate heavy metals pollution in soils textured from sandy clay loam to clay. The obtained results imply all techniques significantly decreased the concentration of  Pb, Cd, Ni, Zn and Cu in the soils, however, chemical remediation technique especially the mixture between the two treatments (T3) were more effective in decreasing the hazards of pollutants in the studied soils. Different mechanisms between both used techniques and heavy metals were discussed.

Keywords: Phytoextraction; Heavy metals; Intercropping; Tomato; Radish; Turnip.