Chromium and Nickel Accumulation by Plants Along an Altitudinal Gradient in Western Carpathian Secondary Spruce Stands
Margita Kuklová, Ján Kukla, Katarína Gašová
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Institute of Forest Ecology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences,
Štúrova 2, 960 53 Zvolen, Slovak Republic
Submission date: 2015-11-04
Final revision date: 2016-03-02
Acceptance date: 2016-03-07
Publication date: 2016-07-22
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2016;25(4):1563–1572
Our research was realized in segments of 80-year-old secondary spruce ecosystems selected in the buffer zone of Slovenský raj NP (western Carpathians). The vertical transect (635-1,110 m a.s.l.) consisted of three localities with six geobiocoenological plots. The Cr contents (mg kg-1) found in surface humus (0.38±0.04-2.18±0.22) and Ao horizons (0.20±0.03-3.16±0.32) of Skeli-Humic Podzols and Dystric Cambisols were nearly the same, in contrast to Ni (5.27±0.47-22.41±2.02 and 0.81±0.07- 3.75±0.34 mg kg-1, respectively). Ni contents in Ool and Oof horizons of surface humus with altitude as a rule decreased, while in Ooh horizon increased. For Cr a similar dependence was not observed. The Cr contents in plants (Dryopteris dilatata, Luzula luzuloides, Prenanthes purpurea, Rubus idaeus, Senecio ovatus, Solidago virgaurea, Vaccinium myrtillus) were usually lower than 0.4-0.5 mg kg-1, with the exception of V. myrtillus (> 1.1 mg kg-1) at 1,110 m a.s.l. On the other hand, Ni content was mostly higher as background value (1.5 mg kg-1), and in the case of S. virgaurea up above 10 mg kg-1 at 650 m a.s.l. The highest mean Ni content was found in S. ovatus, and it significantly (p < 0.05) differed from those found in V. myrtillus and L. luzuloides (fertile) shoots. Stronger positive linear correlations were between Cr content in soils and shoots of D. dilatata and L. luzuloides (sterile). For Ni, it was R. idaeus. Ni transfer coefficients (TC) found for five plants (L. luzuloides – sterile, R. idaeus, D. dilatata, S. ovatus, S. virgaurea) rooted in surface horizons of Cambisols were higher than 1, thus pointing at the impact of soil contamination. Cr TC higher than 1 were found for D. dilatata (2.4) and V. myrtillus (1.1.-3.6) rooted in the surface horizons of Podzols, indicating the better bio-accumulation ability of these plants.