Development of Betula pendula seedlings growing on the Silesia Steelworks dumping grounds in Katowice
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Department of Ecology, University of Silesia, Jagiellońska 18, 40-032 Katowice, Poland
Publication date: 2020-07-16
Acta Agroph. 2001, (51), 51–55
Zinc-lead waste dumps belong to the type of industrial waste areas which are unyielding to natural reclamation techniques. Heterogeneous composition of waste results in numerous complex physical and chemical processes causing serious air and water pollution in the surrounding areas. Moreover, industrial waste is characterized by high concentration of heavy metal compounds and other toxic substances which constantly affected all living organisms exposed to them. The present research shows the results of research aimed to establish degree of the sensitivity of Betula pendula seedlings to the adverse conditions of zinc-lead waste from the "Silesia Steelworks" in Katowice. Two kinds of substrate, i.e. slag and post-flotation waste was placed in pot cultures (17 cm in top diameter) and for each kind of waste a different soil variant was applied: (I) dump soil, (II) dump soil fertilized with NPK fertilizer, (III) dump soil covered with a 2.5 cm layer of garden soil, (IV) dump soil mixed with peat. In the experiment each variant of the soil type was used in 3 pots (repetitions). Additionally, pots with garden soil were used as control. Each pot received 25 seeds. The seeds of Betula pendula growing on smelter waste dumps had been collected in the vicinity of the dumps. At the end of the experiment, the seedlings were counted and the leaf colouring, height, root length of each seedling was measured. The results of the experiment showed that the most favourable soil type for Betula pendula seedlings were variants Nos (Ill) and (IV).