Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 392–401 | Cite as

Evaluation of the potential of sewage sludge as a valuable fertilizer for wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) crops

  • Ebrahem M. EidEmail author
  • Sulaiman A. Alrumman
  • Ahmed F. El-Bebany
  • Khaled F. Fawy
  • Mostafa A. Taher
  • Abd El-Latif Hesham
  • Gamal A. El-Shaboury
  • Mohamed T. Ahmed
Research Article


A greenhouse experiment was performed to assess the soil heavy metal pools, growth, yield, and heavy metal uptake of wheat plants (Triticum aestivum L.) that are grown at different rates in soils supplemented with sewage sludge (SS). The experimental design was completely randomized, with six replicates per treatment. The application of SS significantly increased the soil organic matter content. Generally, most growth parameters, as well as the biomass of treated wheat, were significantly increased with the amendment of SS, up to the addition rate of 40 g kg−1. The content of all heavy metals (except Cr in grains and Pb in spikes) significantly increased in different tissues of treated wheat with the increasing rate of SS application. However, all heavy metal concentrations (except for Al, Cr, Fe, and Mn in the roots) were normal and did not overcome the phytotoxic levels. The wheat was recognized by a bioaccumulation factor < 1.0 for most of the heavy metals. The translocation factor for all of the heavy metals was < 1.0. Therefore, the SS utilized in the present study could be used as a valuable organic fertilizer in wheat cultivation areas in Saudi Arabia and could also act as an eco-friendly method for the recycling of SS.


Bioaccumulation factor Biosolids Common wheat Growth parameters Heavy metals Soil fertility Translocation factor 



This work was supported by the Deanship of Scientific Research at King Khalid University (Project Number R.G.P. 1/14/38).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ebrahem M. Eid
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Sulaiman A. Alrumman
    • 1
  • Ahmed F. El-Bebany
    • 3
  • Khaled F. Fawy
    • 4
  • Mostafa A. Taher
    • 1
    • 5
  • Abd El-Latif Hesham
    • 6
  • Gamal A. El-Shaboury
    • 1
  • Mohamed T. Ahmed
    • 1
  1. 1.Biology Department, College of ScienceKing Khalid UniversityAbhaSaudi Arabia
  2. 2.Botany Department, Faculty of ScienceKafr El-Sheikh UniversityKafr El-SheikhEgypt
  3. 3.Plant Pathology Department, Faculty of AgricultureAlexandria UniversityAlexandriaEgypt
  4. 4.Chemistry Department, College of ScienceKing Khalid UniversityAbhaSaudi Arabia
  5. 5.Botany Department, Faculty of ScienceAswan UniversityAswanEgypt
  6. 6.Genetics Department, Faculty of AgricultureAssiut UniversityAssiutEgypt

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