Risk of boron and heavy metal pollution from agro-industrial wastes applied for plant nutrition

Secer M., Ceylan S. , Elmaci O. L. , Akdemir H.

ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.168, pp.353-361, 2010 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 168
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10661-009-1119-y
  • Page Numbers: pp.353-361


In this study, the effects of various agro-industrial wastes were investigated when applied to soil alone or in combination with chemical fertilizers, regarding the risks of boron and heavy metal pollution of soils and plants. Nine combinations of production residues from various agro-industries, urban wastes, and mineral fertilizers were applied to potatoes in a field experiment. The content of available boron in the soil differed significantly (p < 0.05) among the applications. Generally, B values were found to be slightly higher when soapstock, prina, and blood were used alone or in combination. Although total Co, Cd, and Pb contents of soils showed no significant differences between the applications, Cr content differed significantly (p < 0.05). No pollution risk was observed in soil in respect to total Co, Cd, Pb, and Cr contents. The amount of boron and heavy metals in leaves showed no significant differences among the applications. Cobalt, Cd, and Pb in leaves were at normal levels whereas Cr was slightly above normal but well under the critical level. Boron was low in tubers and varied significantly between applications such as Co and Cd. The Co content of tubers was high, Cd and Cr contents were below average, and Pb content was between the given values. Some significant correlations were found between soil characteristics and the boron and heavy metal content of soil, leaves, and tubers.