, Volume 819, Issue 1, pp 53–66 | Cite as

Strategies for lead distribution in organs of Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. ex Steud. (Common reed) subjected to Pb pollution in flood and drought environments

  • Na Zhang
  • Jing Chen
  • Zhiqiang Li
  • Yujie Shi
  • Chunsheng Mu
  • Zhenhua Zhang
Primary Research Paper


Heavy metal allocation in clonal organs, stems, leaves, and roots has not been systematically studied for rhizomatous perennial plants. Here, pot experiments have been designed to investigate lead (Pb) distribution in different organs of Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. ex Steud. Common reed subjected to 0–4500 mg Pb kg−1 under both flood and drought conditions. In either water treatment, Pb concentrations in offspring shoots were lower than in parent shoots; however, the opposite response was observed for biomass allocation for which parent shoots protected offspring shoots. Lower allocation of Pb to leaves rather than stems in offspring shoots could be a protective strategy of leaves under flood conditions. Lower Pb allocation to rhizomes is better for rhizome growth. This further provides energy for the growth of buds and offspring shoots, because the rhizome biomass and the number of buds and offspring shoots were not significantly inhibited by Pb levels of ≤ 3000 mg kg−1 in the flooded environment. These Pb allocation strategies could enhance the resistance capacity of reeds to Pb contamination by stabilizing population propagation and productivity, especially at Pb levels of ≤ 3000 mg kg−1 under flood conditions.


Phragmites australis Parent shoots Offspring shoots Rhizomes Lead distribution 



The authors gratefully acknowledge funding support from the Chinese Postdoctoral Science Foundation Funded Project (2017M621670), the National Key Basic Research Program of China (2015CB150801), the Open Fund of Jiangsu Provincial Key Laboratory of Palygorskite Science and Applied Technology (HPK201604 and HPK201705), the Independent Innovation Fund of Agricultural Science and Technology, Jiangsu Province (CX(16)1051), and the Open Project Program of the Key Laboratory of Vegetation Ecology of Ministry of Education, Northeast Normal University (130028712).


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Animal ScienceJiangsu Academy of Agricultural SciencesNanjingChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory for Palygorskite Science and Applied Technology of Jiangsu ProvinceHuaiyin Institute of TechnologyHuaianChina
  3. 3.Key Lab of Food Quality and Safety of Jiangsu Province—State Key Laboratory Breeding BaseJiangsu Academy of Agricultural SciencesNanjingChina
  4. 4.Key Laboratory of Vegetation Ecology, Ministry of Education, Institute of Grassland ScienceNortheast Normal UniversityChangchunChina
  5. 5.Academy of Climate Change and Public PolicyNanjing University of Information Science and TechnologyNanjingChina
  6. 6.Key Laboratory of Vegetation Ecology Ministry of Education, Institute of Grassland ScienceNortheast Normal UniversityChangchunChina

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