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2021 John Ogilvie Research Innovation Award


Contribution: Safe Use of Untreated or Partially Treated Wastewater in Agriculture                                                            

Dr. Shiv Prasher 

Field lysimeters, 1.0 m height x 0.45 m diameter, were used to determine the fate, transport, and translocation of heavy metals in irrigation water in potatoes and spinach plants grown on a sandy soil. Plantain peel biochar (1% w/w) was incorporated in the top 0.1 m of soil. Control and biochar treatments were replicated three times in a completely randomized. Results showed that all heavy metals accumulated in the topsoil. No heavy metals were detected in the leachate. Heavy metals also translocated to all parts of the potato plant, including roots, peel, flesh, and shoots. Biochar amendment significantly reduced (p<0.05) Cd, Cu, Cr, Pb and Zn in the flesh. In spinach, biochar amendment reduced Zn uptake by 42%. Yields, however, were not significantly different between the treatments.