It is observed that ramie (Boehmeria nivea), an economic fiber crop, can establish and colonize metal-contaminated sites in China. Metal tolerance and accumulation by ramie originating from 13 metal-contaminated and 4 "clean" sites in China were compared under field and hydroponic conditions. All selected populations and germplasms displayed good growth performance under diverse metal-contaminated habitats; while growth responses, metal accumulation and tolerance were similar among the 8 populations and 2 germplasms when exposed to solutions containing elevated As, Cd, Pb, or Zn in the laboratory. These revealed that ramie possesses a certain degree of constitutional metal tolerance. To our knowledge, this is the first report of constitutional metal tolerance possessed by a fiber crop. Ramie can be considered as a good candidate for both fiber production and phytoremediation of sites contaminated by multi-metals, as it accumulates relative low metal concentrations, but possesses both high biomass and high economic value.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
- Constitutional tolerance
- Heavy metals