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Estimating Arsenic Mobility and Phytotoxicity Using Two Different Phosphorous Fertilizer Release Rates in Soil

O-Jeong Eco Resilience Institute, Korea University, Seoul 02841, Korea
Department of Agricultural Convergence, Jeonju University, Jeonju 55069, Korea
Division of Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering, College of Life Science and Biotechnology, Korea University, Seoul 02841, Korea
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Agronomy 2019, 9(3), 111;
Received: 12 February 2019 / Revised: 22 February 2019 / Accepted: 22 February 2019 / Published: 26 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Soil and Plant Nutrition)
PDF [809 KB, uploaded 26 February 2019]


Deficiencies in phosphorus (P), an essential factor for plant growth and aided phytostabilization, are commonly observed in soil, especially near mining areas. The objective of this study was to compare the effect of P-based fertilizer types on arsenic (As) extractability and phytotoxicity in As-contaminated soil after stabilizer treatment. Different treatments with respect to the P-releasing characteristics were applied to soil to determine As mobility and phytotoxicity in P-based fertilizers, with bone meal as a slow-releasing P fertilizer and fused superphosphate as a fast-releasing P fertilizer. In addition, P fertilizers were used to enhance plant growth, and two types of iron (Fe)-based stabilizers (steel slang and acid mine drainage sludge) were also used to reduce As mobility in As-contaminated soil under lab-scale conditions. A water-soluble extraction was conducted to determine As and P extractability. A phytotoxicity test using bok choy (Brassica campestris L. ssp. chinensis Jusl.) was performed to assess the elongation and accumulation of As and P. Within a single treatment, the As stabilization was higher in steel slag (84%) than in acid mine drainage sludge (27%), and the P supply effect was higher in fused superphosphate (24740%) than in bone meal (160%) compared to the control. However, a large dose of fused superphosphate (2%) increased not only the water-soluble P, but also the water-soluble As, and consequently, increased As uptake by bok choy roots, leading to phytotoxicity. In combined treatments, the tendency towards change was similar to that of the single treatment, but the degree of change was decreased compared to the single treatment, thereby decreasing the risk of phytotoxicity. In particular, the toxicity observed in the fused superphosphate treatments did not appear in the bone meal treatment, but rather the growth enhancement effect appeared. These results indicate that the simultaneous application of bone meal and stabilizers might be proposed and could effectively increase plant growth via the stabilization of As and supplementation with P over the long term. View Full-Text
Keywords: arsenic; bok choy; bone meal; gentle soil remediation options; phytotoxicity arsenic; bok choy; bone meal; gentle soil remediation options; phytotoxicity

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Kim, M.-S.; Min, H.-G.; Kim, J.-G.; Lee, S.-R. Estimating Arsenic Mobility and Phytotoxicity Using Two Different Phosphorous Fertilizer Release Rates in Soil. Agronomy 2019, 9, 111.

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