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Uptake and distribution of cadmium by sweet corn grown on contaminated soil: a field study

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Document pages: 8 pages

Abstract: Maize is an economic crop and a candidate crop for phytoremediation in low to moderate cadmium contaminated soil, because maize can accumulate high concentrations of cadmium in parts that cannot be eaten by humans, while only low concentrations of cadmium can be accumulated in fruits. Maize varieties ct38 and Hz were planted on cadmium polluted field soil, and nitrotriacetic acid (NTA) was used to improve the plant extraction effect of maize. Different organs of maize were analyzed to determine the cadmium pool in maize. Leaf sheath tissue and leaf tissue were distinguished. The decreasing order of Cd content in tissues was sheath > root > leaf > stem > fruit. The addition of NTA increased the absorption of cadmium, but left a relative distanceibution of the metal among the plant organs essentially unchanged. The Cd in the fruit of maize was below the Chinese government’s permitted concentration in coarse cereals. Therefore, this study shows that it is possible to conduct maize phytoremediation of Cd-contaminated soil while, at the same time, harvesting a crop, for subsequent consumption.

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