Effects of Soil Amendments on Microbial Activities in a Typical Cd-Contaminated Purple Field Soil, Southwestern China

  • Wenqiang Wang
  • Fengwu Zhou
  • Yajun Chang
  • Jian CuiEmail author
  • Dongyi He
  • Jinmeng Du
  • Andy Chan
  • Dongrui Yao
  • Yong LiEmail author
  • Zhiyuan Chen
  • Khalil Kariman


In this study, three soil amendments (inorganic, liming, or organic–inorganic materials) were used in a Cd-contaminated purple field soil to investigate their impacts on soil Cd availability, enzyme (urease, catalase, sucrase, and acid phosphatase) activities, microbial biomass (carbon/nitrogen) and type (bacteria, fungi, and actinomycetes) in mustard and corn trials. Results showed that soil amendments generally decreased soil exchangeable Cd, fungi and bacterial populations while increasing the activities of all the four soil enzymes tested, microbial biomass carbon and populations of actinomycetes (p < 0.05). Soil pH and microbial biomass nitrogen did not exhibit any significant response (p > 0.05) whereas stronger effects appeared in soil organic matter and available nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium; p < 0.05). However, only soil available phosphorous significantly correlated with soil microbial activity in both mustard and corn trails (p < 0.05). Thus, application of phosphorous-containing amendments should be considered for promoting soil health in the remediation of the Cd-contaminated purple soils.


Soil amendments Soil microbial activity Available phosphorous Cd-contaminated purple soil Remediation 



This work was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China (41571464; 41977333). The authors also thank all staffs in the Centre of Atmospheric Environment Research, Chongqing Institute of Green and Intelligent Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences for their support.

Supplementary material

128_2020_2786_MOESM1_ESM.docx (30 kb)
Supplementary file1 (DOCX 29 kb)


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Resources and EnvironmentSouthwest UniversityChongqingChina
  2. 2.Institute of BotanyJiangsu Province and Chinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina
  3. 3.Centre of Atmospheric Environment Research, Chongqing Institute of Green and Intelligent TechnologyChinese Academy of SciencesChongqingChina
  4. 4.Division of Environment, Faculty of EngineeringUniversity of Nottingham Malaysia CampusSemenyihMalaysia
  5. 5.School of Agriculture and EnvironmentThe University of Western AustraliaPerthAustralia

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