Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 36, pp 36636–36644 | Cite as

Evaluation of the potential of Erodium glaucophyllum L. for phytoremediation of metal-polluted arid soils

  • Kaouthar JeddiEmail author
  • Mohamed Chaieb
Research Article


The present work aimed at studying pollution of traffic-related heavy metals (HMs) in roadside soils and their uptake by the Mediterranean native species Erodium glaucophyllum L., growing along Gabès-El Hamma highway, Gabès (Tunisia). Here, heavy metals were analyzed in soils and in plant roots and shoots along different distances from the highway edge. High levels of all the investigated soil trace elements were found in samples collected at 15 m distance from the highway. Overall, HM concentrations in the below- and aboveground part of E. glaucophyllum showed significant decreases with increasing distance from the highway. The lowest values were recorded at 150 m. Biological concentration factor (BCF) and mobility ratio (MR) of all investigated heavy metals were > 1 at all distances from the highway, except for Mn and Cu. High values of BCF and MR for Zn indicate that E. glaucophyllum has an excellent potential for the assimilation of this element from the soil. In addition, the higher translocation factors (TF) of Pb, Cd, Zn, and Fe in E. glaucophyllum shoots make it suitable for their phytoextraction from soil, while the lower TF for Mn and Cu make this plant convenient for their phytostabilization. Moreover, the significant positive correlations of Mn, Pb, Cu, and Zn in soil and Erodium organs may suggest its potential use as biomonitor of these trace elements. According to these results, E. glaucophyllum seems to be valued as an efficient native species for in situ phytoremediation program on traffic metal-polluted soils.


Heavy traffic pollution Erodium glaucophyllum L. Bioaccumulation Translocation Native species Soil remediation 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Plant Biodiversity and Dynamic of Ecosystems in Arid AreaFaculty of Sciences of SfaxSfaxTunisia
  2. 2.Department of BiologyFaculty of Sciences of GabèsGabesTunisia

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