Effect of simultaneous establishment of Sedum alfredii and Zea mays on heavy metal accumulation in plants. Academic Article uri icon


  • Land application of biosolids to improve agricultural productivity is a cost-effective approach for resource recovery. Unfortunately, municipal biosolids often contain high concentrations of heavy metals, including zinc and copper. In this study, a co-cropping technique was investigated using a known zinc hyperaccumulator, Sedum alfredii with a grain crop, Zea mays. After a 3-mo growth trial, the results indicate that when Z. mays is co-cropped with S. alfredii, heavy metals accumulated in the grains were significantly reduced when compared to monoculture cropping. Co-cropping improved the growth of both plant species. In addition, the biosolids maintained stable pH, N-P-K concentrations, germination potential, and water content after the plant treatment, regardless of the plant species used in the trial. In conclusion, co-cropping with hyperaccumulators may be an effective approach to reducing the risk of contaminant uptake in edible crops.

published proceedings

  • Int J Phytoremediation

author list (cited authors)

  • Liu, X., Wu, Q., & Banks, M. K.

citation count

  • 52

complete list of authors

  • Liu, Xiaomei||Wu, Qitang||Banks, M Katherine

publication date

  • March 2005