Influence of Fertilizer and Sewage Sludge Compost on Yield and Heavy Metal Accumulation By Lettuce Grown in Urban Soils

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Sterrett, S.B., R.L. Chaney, C.E. Hirsch and H.W. Mielke. 1996. Influence of amendments on yield and heavy metal accumulation of lettuce grown in urban garden soils. Environ. Geochem. Health 18:135 142.

Influence of Fertilizer and Sewage Sludge Compost on Yield

and Heavy Metal Accumulation By Lettuce Grown in Urban Soils
S. B. Sterrett

Virginia Polytechnical Institute and State University

Eastern Shore Agricultural Research Station

Rt. 1, Box 133

Painter, VA, USA. 23420
R. L. Chaney

USDA-Agricultural Research Service

Environmental Chemistry Laboratory

Bldg. 007, BARC-West

Beltsville, MD, USA. 20705
C. H. Gifford

Eastwood Animal Clinic

Rutland, VT, USA. 05701
H. W. Mielke

Xavier University of Louisiana

College of Pharmacy

7325 Palmetto St.

New Orleans, LA 70125
Key words: zinc, copper, manganese, iron, lead, cadmium, nickel, phosphorus, limestone, fertilizer, sewage sludge compost.

Previous research has demonstrated that many urban soils are enriched in Pb, Cd, and Zn. Culture of vegetable crops in these soils could allow transfer of potentially toxic metals to foods. `Tanya' lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) was grown in pots of 5 urban garden soils and 1 control agricultural soil to assess the effect of urban soil metal enrichment, and the effect of soil amendments, on heavy metal uptake by garden vegetables. The amendments included NPK fertilizer, limestone, Ca(H2PO4)2, and two rates of limed sewage sludge compost. Soil Cd ranged from 0.08 to 9.6 mg kg-1; soil Zn, from 38 to 3490 mg kg-1; and soil Pb, from 12 to 5210 mg kg-1. Lettuce yield on the urban garden soils was as great as or greater than that on the control soil. Lettuce Cd, Zn, and Pb concentrations increased from 0.65, 23, and 2.2 mg  kg 1 dry matter in the control soil to as high as 3.53, 422, and 37.0 mg kg-1 on the metal rich urban garden soils. Addition of limestone or limed sewage sludge compost raised soil pH and significantly reduced lettuce Cd and Zn, while phosphate fertilizer lowered soil pH and had little effect on Zn but increased Cd concentration in lettuce. Urban garden soils caused a significant increase in lettuce leaf Pb concentration, especially on the highest Pb soil. Addition of NPK fertilizer, phosphate, or sludge compost to two high Pb soils lowered lettuce Pb concentration, but addition of limestone generally did not. On normally fertilized soils, Pb uptake by lettuce was not exceptionally high until soil Pb substantially exceeded 500 mg kg-1. Comparing garden vegetables and soil as potential sources of Pb risk to children, it is clear that risk is greater through ingestion of soil or dust than through ingestion of garden vegetables grown on the soil. Urban dwellers should obtain soil metal analyses before selecting garden locations to reduce Pb risk to their children.


Gardening is presently the top ranking outdoor leisure activity in the United States with 44% of American households having vegetable and/or flower gardens (Butterfield, 1988). As recently as 1984, the main reason given for gardening was to save money. However, the 1986 1987 National Gardening Survey indicated that the major reasons for gardening include fresher tasting vegetables, better quality food, and presumed better nutrition and health. The last US census indicated that more than 74% of the population of the United States are considered urban dwellers with the urban population being the majority and the rural population the minority in all but seven states (Moore, 1988). An estimated 30 million urban households had a flower and/or vegetable garden in 1988 (Butterfield, B.W., personal communication).

Research has shown that urban soils are often enriched in heavy metals. Purves (1967) compared samples of topsoil from urban gardens and rural arable soils, noting appreciable enhancement of Pb, Cu, and B in urban soils. Davies (1978) found that Pb concentration in garden soils increased with length of habitation, indicating human activities contaminate garden soils. Other studies have also noted substantial contamination of urban soils by Pb, Cd, and Zn (Spittler and Feder, 1979; Mielke et al., 1983; Chaney et al., 1984; Culbard et al., 1988; Thornton and Jones, 1984; Preer et al., 1984).

From studies in several cities in Great Britain and the United States, a general pattern of heavy metal contamination of soils in urban areas has become evident (Davies, 1978; Mielke, et al., 1983; Culbard, et al., 1988). Three major sources have been identified: 1) automotive Pb emissions; 2) aerosol emissions of volatile elements such as Pb, Zn, and Cd; and 3) Pb-based paints. Metal concentrations are generally higher in the center or oldest sections of the city and decline with distance mostly due to collection of aerosol Pb. Soil around older homes (painted before 1950) frequently contain higher concentrations of heavy metals, particularly Pb from exterior Pb-based house paints, than more recently developed sites in the suburbs.

Local industries (smelters, etc.) have contributed significantly to the heavy metal concentrations in soil and in house dust in some urban areas (Davies and White, 1981; Tiller, et al., 1976; Chaney et al., 1988). Mine wastes rich in Pb, Cd, and Zn have been marketed in some areas (Wixson, et al., 1983; Chaney et al., 1988). Previous agricultural land use has influenced metal concentrations in some locations where old orchard land has been developed into residential areas. Old orchard soils are often high in Pb, Cu, and As from pesticide sprays (Elfving et al., 1978; Merry et al., 1983). Application of sewage sludge has usually increased soil Zn, Cu, Cd and Pb especially when sludges are rich in metals (Chaney, 1989).

High soil Pb concentrations are frequently found near walls or buildings painted with Pb based paint (Preer et al, 1984; Chaney et al., 1989). If the soil remains undisturbed, Pb concentrations sharply decrease with soil depth and with increasing distance from the structure. Demolition can contribute to enhanced metal concentrations in urban soils since the paint and plaster are generally left on the site and incorporated into the new surface soil (Chaney et al., 1984). Automotive exhaust contributes Pb to nearby soils, and tire wear contributes Zn and Cd. Soil metal concentration decreases rapidly with distance from the road and increases with increased traffic volume (Page et al., 1971; Davies and Holmes, 1972; Preer et al, 1980b, 1984). Automotive exhaust Pb is also accumulated in soil near unpainted buildings where rainfall washes off aerosol Pb collected on the building surfaces.

Lead in urban soils could be associated with two areas of Pb-risk to human health: 1) uptake by, or surface contamination of, food crops (Davies, 1978; Chamberlain, 1983; Sherlock, 1987); and 2) direct ingestion of soil and/or housedust by children (Sayre et al., 1974; Duggan and Inskip, 1985). Human activities and pets bring exterior soil into homes and this soil contributes to housedust. Several researchers have found a significant correlation between soil Pb and housedust Pb concentrations (Jordan and Hogan, 1975; Bornschein et al., 1986; Culbard et al., 1988). Consequently, urban soils with elevated Pb concentrations may contribute to body burden of Pb of children and individuals who are already "at risk" because they live in urban centers (Mahaffey et al., 1982).

In the United States, the Congressionally-mandated urban gardening program has focused on community gardens in inner city urban areas in several states (Chaney et al., 1984). Neighborhood groups were encouraged to establish and maintain these community gardens which were frequently located on empty lots. However, many urban soils have substantial heavy metal contamination, particularly Pb, Cd, and Zn (Davies, 1978; Spittler and Feder, 1979; Mielke et al., 1983; Preer et al., 1984; Thornton and Jones, 1984; Moir and Thornton, 1989). Because elevated concentrations of Pb, Cd, Zn, and Cu have been found in vegetables grown on highly contaminated urban soils (Davies, 1978, Preer et al., 1980a, 1980b; Chaney et al., 1984), questions have been raised concerning the safety of consuming vegetables from inner city gardens and the most appropriate management practices to minimize heavy metal uptake from urban garden soils.

Reduction in Pb, Cd, Zn, and Cu concentrations in plant tissue have been reported with additions of limestone or calcium carbonate (MacLean et al, 1969; Cox and Rains, 1972; Hardiman, et al., 1984, John, 1972). Lower concentrations of Zn, Fe, Mn, Cu, Ni, Cd, and Pb have been associated with the addition of phosphate fertilizer (MacLean et al, 1969; Miller et al., 1975; Boggess, et al., 1978; Bassuk, 1986). Additional organic matter has resulted in reduced uptake of Pb, Ni, Cd, and Zn (Haghiri, 1974; MacLean, 1974; Zimdahl and Foster, 1976; Bassuk, 1986). However, many of these studies involved soils enriched with metal salts, and researchers have found that plants can absorb much higher amounts of metals from soils treated with metal salts than from soils which accumulate equivalent metal loadings from environmental sources over many years. For example, Hassett and Miller (1977) found substantially less uptake of Pb from roadside soils environmentally enriched with Pb over time than with Pb salt amended soils. Low Pb uptake results because Pb can be tightly bound in soils (John, 1972; Hassett, 1974; Zimdahl and Skogerboe, 1977; Hardiman, et al., 1984), but reaching equilibrium takes time. In some cases, materials which accompany Pb enrichment of soils might affect the potential for Pb uptake (e.g., limestone adjacent to rural roads; Hassett and Miller, 1977).

This study was conducted to examine whether common inorganic and organic soil amendments could reduce heavy metal accumulation in lettuce grown in urban garden soils with various levels of metal contamination. Soils from urban vegetable gardens and control farmland were selected from within the same soil series to assess metal accumulation of lettuce from environmental sources rather than from additions of inorganic salts. Lettuce was selected as the test crop because it is widely grown as a popular garden vegetable, and because lettuce is a known accumulator of heavy metals, including Pb (Davies, 1978; Spittler and Feder, 1979; Preer et al., 1980b, Chaney et al., 1982). Further, the leaves (which accumulate higher Pb concentrations than do root vegetables, tubers, grains, or garden fruits) are consumed by humans.


Soils were collected from the tilled depth (0-20 cm) of five urban garden sites in Baltimore, MD, and from one non contaminated agricultural site near Beltsville, MD. The urban garden soils were selected to reflect a range of levels of metal contamination from environmental sources (Table 1). The soils were Chillum silt loam (fine-silty, mixed, mesic Typic Hapludults). Each 15 cm polyethylene pot contained 1800 g dry soil or soil + amendments. Fertilizer and organic amendments were added four months prior to planting, with intermittent wetting, drying, and mixing. Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (150 150 126 mg kg 1 soil respectively,) were added to all treatments (NPK) except the unamended control (none). The treatment NPK+P included an additional 500 mg kg-1 P as reagent Ca(H2PO4)2 (which did not add appreciable Cd to the soils), while 20 g kg-1 CaCO3 (fine powdered reagent) was added to the NPK+CaCO3 treatment. Sewage sludge compost from Washington, DC (a low metal, residential sludge composted with wood chips; Parr et al., 1978) was used for the NPK+5% or NPK+10% compost (dry weight basis, equivalent to approximately 112 or 224 t ha 1). This compost contained 730 mg Zn, 7.2 mg Cd, 270 mg Pb, 270 mg Cu, 41 g Fe, 18 g P and 140 g CaCO3 equivalent kg-1 dry matter, with about 60% organic matter.

The study was conducted in a growth chamber, with 16 h daylength and 25 day temperature. `Tanya' lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.), a cultivar previously found to accumulate the highest foliar Pb concentration from a contaminated soil among cultivars studied (Feder et al., 1980) was planted and thinned to five seedlings per pot within 14 days of planting. Deionized water was added as needed for plant growth; the pots were free draining into polyethylene saucers. Plants were grown to marketable maturity and harvested with stainless steel scissors. Senescent leaves (lowest four leaves) were discarded to minimize potential soil contamination of the lettuce samples; these basal leaves would normally be discarded during preparation for consumption. Plant tissue was dried at 70, ground to pass a 40 mesh screen of a stainless steel Wiley Mill, and dry-ashed overnight at 480. The ash was treated with HNO3 and heated to near dryness, and the sample dissolved in 3 M HCl with heating. Concentrations of Zn, Cu, Fe, Mn, Cd, Pb, and Ni were determined by flame atomic absorption spectrophotometry, using deuterium background correction for Pb, Cd, and Ni. Phosphorus was determined colorimetrically (Olson and Sommers, 1982).

The study was set up as a randomized complete block design with three replications. Prior to statistical analyses, data for plant metal concentrations were tested for outliers (Snedecor and Cochran, 1980) and log-transformed to stabilize variance. Analysis of variance of the log transformed data, using the general linear model procedure of SAS (1985) was followed by mean separation with Waller-Duncan K-ratio T Test.

Dry matter accumulation of lettuce was significantly affected by the soil in which it was grown, but not by the addition of organic or inorganic amendments (Table 2). Both the soil and amendments influenced metal uptake in lettuce, and there were significant interactions of soil and treatment on soil pH and plant Cd, Zn, and Mn.

The addition of N P K fertilizer significantly reduced tissue Cu and Mn. Although not significant, a similar trend was found for Zn and Fe. The concentrations of Mn and Cu in lettuce were similar to those reported for lettuce collected from major US growing areas (Wolnik, et al, 1983b). Although Zn and Fe concentrations in lettuce grown in urban soils were higher than those of commercial lettuce grown in uncontaminated rural soils (Wolnik, et al., 1983b), they did not reach phytotoxic levels (Chaney, et al., 1978). Since the average dietary intake of Fe and Zn is below the recommended daily allowance (Peterkin, 1986), vegetables enriched with Fe and Zn may be beneficial provided the concentration of heavy metals associated with health risks (Cd and Pb) are not unacceptably elevated in the vegetables.

As seen in Table 3, significantly higher lettuce Cd concentrations were found in plants grown in soils with 3.40 and 9.60 mg kg 1 Cd (392 and 5210 mg kg 1 Pb soils). The significantly higher lettuce Cd from the most contaminated soil approached the upper safe limit of 0.2 mg kg 1 Cd (fresh weight) estimated by Davies and White (1981). Other evidence indicates that these concentrations of Cd in lettuce comprise no risk to gardeners whose consumption of home garden foods constitute 50% of their lifetime consumption (Chaney et al., 1988; Chaney and Ryan, 1994).

Although the addition of inorganic fertilizer amendments (N P K alone or in combination with P or CaCO3) had little effect on the Cd concentration in lettuce, the addition of sewage sludge compost significantly reduced plant Cd (Table 4). Since plant Cd is reduced as the soil pH is raised (Mahler et al., 1978, Chaney et al., 1982), limited Cd accumulations in the lettuce leaves would be expected with the near neutral pH of the soils used. Although CaCO3 addition insignificantly lowered lettuce Cd compared to the control, addition of sludge compost caused a greater and significant reduction. Both amendments caused the soils to be calcareous, indicating that some compost property other than its CaCO3 content was important in reducing Cd uptake. Specific Cd adsorption on hydrous Fe oxides in sludge compost is believed to cause this Cd reduced uptake (Chaney and Ryan, 1994). Phosphate application resulted in the highest lettuce Cd concentration, probably due to soil acidification from the high application of the acidic phosphate fertilizer salt.

The addition of sewage sludge compost also significantly reduced the concentration of Zn, and Mn in lettuce (Table 4). While not significant, lower lettuce concentrations of Ni and Fe were noted with compost amendments. The reduced concentrations of Zn, Mn, and Ni in lettuce were probably a result of the rise in soil pH due to addition of the calcareous compost. Many authors have found that uptake of Zn, Mn, Ni, and Cd is reduced by increase in soil pH. Table 5 shows the lettuce Cd concentrations for all soils and treatments to show that the compost amendment lowered lettuce Cd in all soils which substantial Cd enrichment. Chaney and Ryan (1994) note that when Zn accompanies increased Cd in leafy vegetables that the bioavailability crop Cd may not be increased because of Zn inhibition of Cd retention in mammals.

Plant Pb concentration was significantly higher in the soil with the greatest Pb contamination (Table 6). Adding NPK alone, NPK+P, and especially NPK+compost to this soil decreased Pb accumulation in lettuce. A similar trend toward lower tissue Pb with addition of NPK or NPK+compost was noted for several soils with lower Pb contamination, but simple NPK fertilizer addition significantly reduced lettuce Pb concentration on only one soil. CaCO3 addition had little effect on the Pb concentration in lettuce grown in contaminated urban garden soils, in contrast with the findings of Cox and Rains (1972) with Pb-salt treated soils.

Crews and Davies (1985) also reported low uptake of Pb by lettuce from environmentally contaminated soils, with significantly higher plant Pb in the most contaminated soil. Miller et al. (1975) concluded that plant uptake of Pb is controlled by the amount of Pb present relative to the capacity of the soil to adsorb Pb, rather than simply by the total amount of Pb in the soil. Others have reported reduced Pb uptake in lettuce with increased organic matter applications (MacLean et al., 1969; Zimdahl and Foster, 1976; Bassuk, 1986).

The ratio of Pb concentration in lettuce leaves relative to soil in which the lettuce was grown ranged from 0.0051 to 0.0155 for the urban soils. This is substantially lower than that reported for Pb in lettuce grown in soils amended with Pb salts (John and van Laerhoven, 1972; Nicklow, et al., 1983). This might explain the less dramatic reductions of Pb accumulation by lettuce with inorganic amendments to these urban soils than have been reported previously with Pb salt amended soils (MacLean et al., 1969; Cox and Rains, 1972; Miller et al., 1975; Bassuk, 1986).

Although the Pb concentration of the control soil used in this study is similar to that of uncontaminated agricultural soils, Pb concentrations in lettuce grown in the control soil are higher than the 0.32 mg kg 1 (dry weight) reported by Wolnik et al., (1983a) for commercially grown lettuce. In their study, samples were collected far from Pb sources, and samples were handled in filtered air hoods to avoid Pb contamination during the laboratory preparation and analysis. The higher than background Pb concentration in lettuce grown on the control soil (about 2 mg kg 1), may have come from both aerosol deposition in the growth chamber (air was not specially filtered) and from unavoidable Pb contamination within our laboratory in 1980 before the completion of the gasoline Pb phase-down in the US.

It appears that the contribution of Pb in garden grown lettuce to diet Pb would be limited when lettuce is grown in urban soils containing less than 1000 mg kg 1 Pb. The addition of N P K fertilizer and compost or other forms of organic matter would further limit plant Pb concentration. Because of the high surface area of lettuce and other leafy vegetables, extra care should be taken in washing and preparation to reduce surface contamination from aerosol Pb (Davies and Holmes, 1972; Preer et al., 1980a; Chamberlain, 1983).

Some research has been conducted to evaluate whether consumption of garden foods grown in urban gardens has any effect on blood Pb concentrations. van Wijn et al. (1983) found no significant change in blood Pb of adults who consumed garden vegetables grown near highways compared to crops grown far from highways (e.g. lettuce contained about 7.4 vs. 2.6 mg Pb kg-1 dry weight, but blood Pb was 8.7 vs.8.3 g dL-1, respectively). However, Gallacher et al. (1984) found an increase in soil Pb of 1000 mg kg 1 was associated with an increase of about 0.20 mol L-1 (4.2 g dL-1) blood Pb in women who consumed most of their vegetables from locally grown sources ( 0.69 mol Pb L-1 compared to 0.40 mol Pb L-1 [14.3 vs. 8.3 g Pb dL-1]) for similar women where soils had control Pb levels. Part of this increase in blood Pb may have resulted from dust Pb contamination of the homes and food preparation surfaces (Gallacher et al., 1984).
Relative Pb risk from garden foods vs. soil ingestion.

Although uptake of Pb by lettuce might be reduced by use of soil amendments, the use of more highly Pb-contaminated urban soils to produce vegetables is not prudent because the contaminated soil can be carried into domiciles. Exterior soil contributes to housedust (e.g., Fergusson et al., 1986), and the Pb concentration of soil and housedust were significantly correlated in many studies (e.g., Jordan and Hogan, 1975; Duggan and Inskip, 1985; Culbard et al., 1988). When highly Pb-contaminated exterior soil is the predominant Pb source, housedust Pb concentration is lower than soil (Culbard et al., 1988; Cotter-Howells and Thornton, 1991). For individuals who are already "at risk" because of age (children exposed through hand-to mouth play), environment, or health, the production of vegetables on highly contaminated urban soils would add to their overall housedust Pb exposure.

A quantitative comparison of the relative ingestion of bioavailable Pb from garden foods vs. soil requires information about ingestion of each. Children ingest only small amounts of vegetable crops (e.g. 0.49 g dry weight leafy vegetables day-1 by 2-year olds according to US surveys; Pennington, 1983). Consumption of leafy vegetables with 5 mg Pb kg-1 DW would thus provide 2.5 g total Pb. Children aged 1-4 years ingested 9-40 mg soil day-1 (for the median child) and one child ingested 5-8 g soil day-1 (Calabrese et al., 1989). If soil contains 1000 mg Pb kg-1, ingestion of 100 mg soil day-1 provides 100 g total Pb day-1, or about 20 g bioavailable Pb day-1 (Chaney et al., 1989). Children with pica for soil can ingest much more soil, but adsorption of Pb by soil in the intestine causes blood-Pb to approach a plateau with increasing soil ingestion rather than being a simple linear response to ingested soil Pb quantity (Freeman et al., 1992). Although this plateau response substantially lowers the potential risk from soil Pb for the presumed worst case pica child, soil ingestion still provides more bioavailable Pb than normal consumption of vegetables grown on the soil. Thus, as noted in Chaney and Ryan (1994) and Chaney et al. (1989), risk from Pb in urban soils is predominantly through ingestion of contaminated soil rather than from garden vegetables. Because of the risk from Pb in ingested soils, decisions about the safety of using soils for gardening should be based on potential ingestion of the soil (e.g., after transfer of garden soil to housedust), not on increases in dietary Pb due to increased Pb uptake by garden crops.

Individuals who want to grow garden vegetables on urban soils are advised to maintain soil pH > 6.5, and use adequate N-P-K fertilizers to minimize plant uptake of Pb. Application of organic amendments such as compost can further reduce Pb uptake by crops. However, vegetables should be washed to remove soil and deposited aerosols, and care should be taken to minimize soil transport into the home. Because of the higher probability of Pb contamination of urban soils (Mielke et al., 1983), individuals should obtain analyses for Pb and other metals before selecting locations for gardening in cities.

We gratefully acknowledge the assistance provided by Ms. Pam King (Baltimore Urban Gardens) in obtaining access and soil from urban gardens, and the technical assistance of Ms. M.M. Leech in preparing the amended soils. We also acknowledge many years of discussion of contaminated vegetable garden soils with Drs. J.A. Ryan, J.R. Preer, B.E. Davies, I. Thornton, and other colleagues.

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Table 1. Characteristics of the unamended soils used in the study.


Soil Pb Cd Zn Cu Ni P Cd:Zn pH CEC


       --------mg kg-1 dry soil------------ cmol kg-1
1 (Control) 12 0.08 38 10 10 210 0.0021 6.0 12

2 392 3.40 438 129 84 590 0.0078 6.4 17

3 413 1.60 496 170 15 720 0.0032 6.3 17

4 655 1.50 791 110 15 670 0.0019 6.3 19

5 1334 0.32 242 50 26 540 0.0013 6.6 25

6 5210 9.60 3490 269 42 540 0.0028 6.6 20

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1 Metal concentration determined by extraction with 1 N HNO3 (Chaney, et al. 1984).

2 P concentration determined by 0.03 M NH4F + 0.025 M HCl Bray-1 method

(Olson and Sommers, 1982).
Table 2. F values from analysis of variance of log transformed1 yield, soil pH, and plant metal concentrations.


NOVA Yield pH Pb Cd Zn Cu Ni Mn Fe P


Soil 7.73** 60.90** 42.14** 59.51** 221.34** 25.85** 6.17** 38.46** 2.11NS 2.90*
Treatment 1.67NS 111.64** 4.43** 1.94NS 15.16** 3.31** 2.35* 9.75** 0.58NS 1.38NS
Soil *

Treatment 1.52NS 13.51** 1.27(.21) 1.90* 3.36** 1.52NS 0.85NS 1.69* 0.57NS 0.81NS


1 Results transformed using loge prior to analyses of variance; **, *, and NS denote P < 0.01, < 0.05, and not significant, respectively.
Table 3. Influence of urban garden soils on geometric mean lettuce yield and heavy metal concentrations and mean soil pH, averaged over treatments.


Soil Pb Yield Pb Cd Ni Zn Cu Mn Fe Soil pH


(mg kg 1) g pot 1 --------------            mg kg-1(dry wt)   --  ---------- ------
12 4.50 d 2.22 d 0.65 d 0.73 b 23.4 f 5.82 b 55.0 a 99. b 6.74 c

392 4.68 cd 4.35 c 2.30 b 1.72 a 77.8 d 9.71 a 17.0 c 146. a 7.19 a

413 5.50 bc 4.55 c 1.62 c 1.18 a 161. b 9.85 a 19.6 c 130. ab 6.55 d

655 7.05 a 5.28 c 0.85 d 0.77 b 96.9 c 6.90 b 19.4 c 115. ab 6.71 c

1334 6.36 ab 7.36 b 0.37 e 0.80 b 33.9 e 3.84 c 25.0 b 106. bb 7.27 a

5210 5.18 cd 21.7 a 3.53 a 1.24 a 422. a 8.96 a 25.7 b 128. ab 6.96 b


1 Means within columns followed by the same letter are not significantly different (P < 0.05) according

to the Waller-Duncan K-ratio T Test.

Table 4. Influence of inorganic and organic amendments to 5 urban garden and 1 control soil on heavy metal concentrations in lettuce, averaged over soils.


Amendment Yield Pb Cd Ni Zn Cu Mn Fe Soil pH


g pot-1 -------                 -mg kg-1(dry weight)-  -----------           
None 4.91 b 7.85 a 1.30 ab 1.21 a 112.a 8.95 a 33.9 a 131. a 6.64 c

NPK 5.74 ab 5.55 bc 1.18 ab 1.10 ab 101.a 6.33 b 27.0 b 118. a 6.66 c

NPK+CaCO3 5.29 ab 5.53 bc 1.18 ab 1.17 a 75.4 b 7.15 b 18.9 e 122. a 7.13 b

NPK+P 6.23 a 6.54 ab 1.43 a 1.17 a 110.a 6.26 b 26.0 bc 126. a 6.40 d

NPK+5% compost 5.72 ab 4.79 bc 1.12 ab 0.86 ab 73.3 b 6.92 b 21.6 de 115. a 7.26 a

NPK+10% compost 5.11 ab 4.30 c 0.92 b 0.72 b 57.6 c 7.52 ab 22.5 cd 107. a 7.33 a


Means within columns followed by the same letter are not significantly different (P < 0.05)

according to Waller-Duncan's K-ratio T Test.

Table 5. Influence of inorganic and organic amendments on geometric mean cadmium concentration in lettuce grown on 5 urban garden and 1 control soil.


Amendment Soil Cd 0.08 3.40 1.60 1.50 0.32 9.60

Soil Zn 38. 438. 496. 791. 242. 3490.

Soil pH 5.7 7.1 6.2 6.6 7.3 6.9


---- -----            Cd in lettuce leaves, mg/kg            -----

None 0.98 ghi' 2.3 b-f 1.8 d-g 0.95 ghi 0.34 klm 4.2 abc

NPK 0.44 j-m 2.6 a-f 2.4 b-f 0.65 ijk 0.29 lm 5.2 a

NPK + CaC03 0.36 klm 2.6 a-f 1.8 d-g 0.77 hij 0.45 j-m 4.7 ab

NPK + P 0.81 hij 3.2 a-d 3.1 a-e 0.97 ghi 0.37 klm 3.0 a-f

NPK + 5% compost 0.63 ijk 1.9 d-g 1.5 fgh 0.79 hij 0.59 i-l 3.0 a-f

NPK + 10% compost 0.98 ghi 3.2 a 0.6 i-l 1.02 ghi 0.27 m 2.2 c-f


' Means within columns followed by the same letter are not significantly different

(P < 0.05) according to Waller-Duncan K-ratio T test.

Table 6. Influence of inorganic and organic amendments on geometric mean lead concentration in lettuce grown on 5

urban garden and one control soil.


Amendment Soil Pb (mg kg 1)


12 392 413 655 1334 5210


----               Pb in lettuce leaves, mg kg-1              --------

None 2.60 a 4.17 a 13.9 a 4.65 a 15.2 a 37.0 a

NPK 1.85 a 4.04 a 3.75 bc 5.15 a 8.30 ab 24.4 ab

NPK + CaC03 1.64 a 4.70 a 6.47 ab 5.90 a 5.64 b 30.6 ab

NPK + P 2.90 a 5.42 a 4.36 bc 6.82 a 7.04 ab 23.6 ab

NPK + 5% compost 2.21 a 4.94 a 2.37 c 4.61 a 6.43 b 15.7 b

NPK + 10% compost 2.37 a 3.22 a 2.53 c 4.89 a 4.97 b 13.5 b


1 Means within columns followed by the same letter are not significantly

different (P < 0.05) according to Waller-Duncan K-ratio T test.

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