Cost-effective and environmentally acceptable methods are needed to remediate munitions-contaminated soil. Some perennial grass species are tolerant of soil contaminants and may promote remediation because of their high water use and extensive fibrous root systems. The effects of 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT) and its reduction product, 4-amino-2,6-dinitrotoluene (4ADNT), on germination and early seedling development of tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.) were determined. Tall fescue seeds were germinated in nutrient-free agar containing 0-60 mg TNT litre-1 or 0-15 mg 4ADNT litre-1. Germination decreased linearly as TNT concentration increased but was not significantly affected by 4ADNT at these concentrations. Concentrations less than 30 mg TNT litre-1 or 7.5 mg 4ADNT litre-1 had little effect on seedling growth and development. Higher TNT or 4ADNT concentrations substantially delayed seedling development, caused abnormal radicle tissue development, and reduced secondary root and shoot growth. Seedling respiration rates decreased linearly with increasing TNT concentration. Experiments indicate that tall fescue may be grown in soils that maintain soil solution concentrations of 30 mg TNT litre-1 or less.
- Tall fescue
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis