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Phytotoxicity of polymetallic mine wastes from southern Tuscany and Saxony
Franzaring⁠⁠, J.; Ancora⁠, S.; Paoli⁠, L.; Fongoh⁠, A. H.; Büttner⁠, P.; Fangmeier⁠, A.; Schlosser⁠, S.; Monaci, F.
Restoration potential of mine wastes or approaches to improve soil conditions and to ameliorate phytotoxicity on these sites may be simulated in standardized greenhouse experiments. Plants can be cultivated side by side on materials from different origins in dilution series with defined admixtures of certain aggregates. Mine wastes used in the present study originated from Fenice Capanne (FC, Tuscany, Italy) and Altenberg (ALT, Saxony, Germany). Tailings of the Italian site contain high concentrations of lead, zinc, arsenic and sulphur while tin, wolfram, molybdenum and lithium are highly elevated in the German mine waste. We tested growth responses of five crop species and analyzed concentrations of various metals and nutrients in the shoot to evaluate the toxicity of the FC mine waste and found oilseed rape being the most and corn the least resistant crop. Interestingly, oilseed rape accumulated seven times higher levels of lead than corn without showing adverse effects on productivity. In a subsequent comparison of FC and ALT mine waste, we cultivated different species of buckwheat (Fagopyrum spec.), a fast growing genus that evolved in mountain areas and that has been shown to be tolerant to low pH and high concentrations of metals. We found that the FC mine waste was more toxic than the ALT substrate in F. tataricum and F. esculentum. However, lower admixtures of FC material (10%) resulted in stronger growth reductions than higher proportions (25%) of the mine waste which was primarily related to the slightly lower pH and higher availability of essential metals due to the admixture of sand. These results confirm the importance of managing the soil chemical and physical characteristics of wastelands and call for the development of assisted reclamation to prepare sites for regular biomass production.
Keywords: Mine wastes, Phytoremediation, Heavy metals, Oilseed rape, Buckwheat, Soil amendment

Publ.-Id: 27721 - Permalink