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    STUDIA BIOLOGIA - Issue no. 1 / 2004  
         
  Article:   UPTAKE OF HEAVY METALS BY MAIZE (ZEA MAYS) PLANTS CULTIVATED ON MINE SPOILS.

Authors:  DORINA PODAR, CRISTINA DOBROTĂ, MIHAI TRIFU.
 
       
         
  Abstract:  The uptake of heavy metals (Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn) by maize (Zea mays) plants cultivated, under field conditions, on mine spoils from Cavnic (Baia Mare) was studied. The experiment, consisting of 4 treatments: control (agricultural soil) and 3 mixtures of agricultural soil with contaminated spoils from Cavnic, in the following proportions: 10, 20 and 30% spoils, was repeated for three years. The concentration of Cd in the maize organs was under the detection limit of the Atomic Absorption Spectrometry (AAS). The accumulation of Zn and Cu in stems and leaves of maize was in the range of normal values: 20-150 mg Zn kg-1 d. wt. and 5-20 mg Cu kg-1 d. wt., whereas the concentrations of Pb in the leaves of plants treated with 20 and 30% spoils were between 1.2 to 2.2 fold higher than the upper normal limit: 6-8 mg Pb kg-1 d. wt. Lead accumulated mainly in roots, whereas Zn and Cu accumulated both in roots and leaves. In all treatments, the concentrations of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn in grains of maize were in the range of normal values. The above-ground green biomass of maize plants was not severely reduced by the heavy metals from spoils, but the grain yield was significantly diminished, especially in treatments with 20 and 30% spoils. The climatic factors are also able to modify the influence of heavy metals from spoils on the growth and yield of maize plants.  
         
     
         
         
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