Next Article in Journal
Empirical Research on Influencing Factors of Sustainable Supply Chain Management—Evidence from Beijing, China
Previous Article in Journal
Effects of Urban Growth on Architectural Heritage: The Case of Buddhist Monasteries in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau
Article Menu
Issue 5 (May) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Sustainability 2018, 10(5), 1594; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10051594

Effects of the Use of Ornamental Plants and Different Substrates in the Removal of Wastewater Pollutants through Microcosms of Constructed Wetlands

1
División de Estudios de Posgrados e Investigación, Tecnológico Nacional de México/Instituto Tecnológico de Orizaba, Oriente 9, Emiliano Zapata Sur, C.P. 94320 Orizaba, Veracruz, México
2
El Colegio de Veracruz, Carrillo Puerto No. 26, 91000 Xalapa, Veracruz, México
3
Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Veracruzana Bv. Adolfo Ruíz Cortines 455, Costa Verde, C.P. 94294 Boca del Rio, Veracruz, México
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 April 2018 / Revised: 11 May 2018 / Accepted: 12 May 2018 / Published: 16 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The New Paradigm of Waste Management: Waste as Resources)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [5287 KB, uploaded 17 May 2018]   |  

Abstract

The high costs involved in treating wastewater are problems that developing countries confront, mainly in rural areas. Therefore, Constructed Wetlands (CWs), which are composed of substrate, vegetation, and microorganisms, are an economically and ecologically viable option for wastewater treatment in these places. There is a wide variety of possibilities for substrates and ornamental plants that have not yet been evaluated to be implemented in future CW designs. The goal of this study was to evaluate the process of adaptation and removal of wastewater pollutants in CW microcosms using different terrestrial ornamental plants (Lavandula sp., Spathiphyllum wallisii, and Zantedeschia aethiopica). Those plants were sown in two types of substrate: red volcanic gravel (RVG) and polyethylene terephthalate (PET). CWs with vegetation reduced 5-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5) by 68% with RVG substrate and 63% with PET substrate, nitrates 50% in RVG substrate and 35% in PET substrate, phosphates 38% in RVG substrate and 35% in PET substrate, and fecal coliforms 64% in RVG and 59% in PET substrate). In control microcosms without vegetation, reductions were significantly lower than those in the presence of plants, with reduction of BOD5 by 61% in RVG substrate and 55% in PET substrate, nitrates 26% in RVG substrate and 22% in PET substrate, phosphates 27% in RVG substrate and 25% in PET substrate. Concerning fecal coliforms 62% were removed in RVG substrate and 59% in PET substrate. Regarding the production of flowers, Lavandula sp. did not manage to adapt and died 45 days after sowing and did not produce flowers. Spathiphyllum wallisii produced 12 flowers in RVG and nine flowers in PET, while Zantedeschia aethiopica produced 10 in RVG and 7 in PET. These results showed that the use of substrates made of RVG and PET is a viable alternative to be implemented in CWs. In addition, the reuse of PET is an option that decreases pollution by garbage. The plants Spathiphyllum wallisii and Zantedeschia aethiopica remarkably contribute in the removal of pollutants in wastewater. Additionally, the use of ornamental plants, with commercial interest such as those evaluated, enables an added value to the CW to be given, which can be used for flower production purposes on a larger scale and favor its acceptance within rural communities. View Full-Text
Keywords: wastewater treatment; ornamental plants; red volcanic gravel; PET wastewater treatment; ornamental plants; red volcanic gravel; PET
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Sandoval-Herazo, L.C.; Alvarado-Lassman, A.; Marín-Muñiz, J.L.; Méndez-Contreras, J.M.; Zamora-Castro, S.A. Effects of the Use of Ornamental Plants and Different Substrates in the Removal of Wastewater Pollutants through Microcosms of Constructed Wetlands. Sustainability 2018, 10, 1594.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Sustainability EISSN 2071-1050 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top