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Open AccessArticle

Influence of Plant Species on Microbial Activity and Denitrifier Population Development in Vegetated Denitrifying Wood-Chip Bioreactors

1
Golder Associates Ltd., 1931 Robertson Road, Ottawa, ON K2H 5B7, Canada
2
Department of Civil Engineering, Queen’s University, 58 University Ave., Kingston, ON K7L 3N6, Canada
3
Centre for Advancement of Water and Wastewater Technologies, Fleming College, 200 Albert Street South, Lindsay, ON K9V 5E6, Canada
4
Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Royal Military College of Canada, Station Forces, Kingston, ON K7K 7B4, Canada
5
Aqua Treatment Technologies, 4250 Fly Road, Campden, ON L0R 1G0, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Plants 2020, 9(3), 289; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9030289
Received: 1 February 2020 / Revised: 20 February 2020 / Accepted: 22 February 2020 / Published: 26 February 2020
The microbial characteristics of four vegetated and one unplanted wood-chip bioreactors treating greenhouse effluent were investigated in a continuous experiment operated for over 2.5 years. The bioreactors were designed to reduce nitrate concentrations via naturally induced microbial denitrification. The vegetation type and reactor depth were both found to be significant factors in defining the mixed microbial activity. However, a consistent correlation between the abundance of the denitrifying communities and reactor depth could not be found across all reactors. The media samples from the unit planted with Typha angustifolia displayed higher microbial activities compared with the other reactors. This plant’s root-associated bacteria also demonstrated the greatest copies of the denitrifying genes nirK and nosZ. The most abundant denitrifier communities and those encoding the nosZ gene were found in the unplanted reactor, followed by the T. angustifolia unit. The T. angustifolia reactor demonstrated greater microbial activity and denitrification capacity at the depth of 20 cm, while the greatest denitrification capacity in the unplanted reactor was found at the depth of 60 cm. These findings indicated the importance of the T. angustifolia rhizosphere to support microbial community establishment and growth in the vicinity of the plant’s roots, although those populations may eventually develop in an unplanted environment. View Full-Text
Keywords: denitrification; wood-chip bioreactor; greenhouse; 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing denitrification; wood-chip bioreactor; greenhouse; 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fatehi-Pouladi, S.; Anderson, B.C.; Wootton, B.; Wallace, S.J.; Bissegger, S.; Rozema, L.; Weber, K.P. Influence of Plant Species on Microbial Activity and Denitrifier Population Development in Vegetated Denitrifying Wood-Chip Bioreactors. Plants 2020, 9, 289. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9030289

AMA Style

Fatehi-Pouladi S, Anderson BC, Wootton B, Wallace SJ, Bissegger S, Rozema L, Weber KP. Influence of Plant Species on Microbial Activity and Denitrifier Population Development in Vegetated Denitrifying Wood-Chip Bioreactors. Plants. 2020; 9(3):289. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9030289

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fatehi-Pouladi, Soheil; Anderson, Bruce C.; Wootton, Brent; Wallace, Sarah J.; Bissegger, Sonja; Rozema, Lloyd; Weber, Kela P. 2020. "Influence of Plant Species on Microbial Activity and Denitrifier Population Development in Vegetated Denitrifying Wood-Chip Bioreactors" Plants 9, no. 3: 289. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9030289

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