, Volume 249, Issue 1, pp 1-8

Metal accumulation and competitive ability in metallicolous and non-metallicolous Thlaspi caerulescens fed with different Zn salts

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Abstract

A non-metallicolous (NM) ecotype of Thlaspi caerulescens from Luxembourg and a metallicolous (M) ecotype from Prayon (E Belgium) are compared for growth and Zn, Mg and Ca accumulation in shoot in a pot experiment in six soil conditions with contrasting Zn availability. The soils were spiked with 2000 mg kg−1 Zn as monometallic salts of contrasting solubility. Both ecotypes were grown in pure and mixed culture in order to assess competitive ability. Both ecotypes had similar growth on all substrates except the one spiked with Zn-sulphate, where ecotype M grew better and had higher competitive ability than ecotype NM. Ecotype NM had higher Zn concentrations than M in all treatments and the difference varied with Zn availability, being largest with Zn-oxide (NM: 31 300 mg kg−1 Zn; M: 5900 mg kg−1 Zn). The results thus indicate that ecotype NM has constitutively higher Zn uptake capacity and may have a higher ability to obtain Zn from specific Zn salts. However, ecotype NM does not appear to be more efficient in obtaining Zn from little available forms. Mg concentration was also higher in ecotype NM. Zn mass per plant was higher in ecotype NM compared to ecotype M in all substrates except Zn-sulphate where the reverse was true. Accordingly, ecotype NM could prove to be a better phytoextractor of Zn for phytoremediation, except in substrates with low pH and high concentration of free Zn in the soil solution.