Revegetation of Pb/Zn mine tailings, Guangdong Province, China

Z. H. Ye, Jonathan W C WONG, Ming Hung WONG*, A. J.M. Baker, W. S. Shu, C. Y. Lan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


The Lechang lead/zinc mine is located in the north part of Guangdong Province, southern China. The tailings residue from the extraction of lead/zinc ores was permanently stored in tailings ponds, which required revegetation to reduce the environmental impact. A field study was, therefore, conducted to evaluate the effects of different ameliorants, including: (1) pig manure (PM); (2) mushroom compost (MC); (3) burnt coal residue (BC); (4) fly ash (FA); and (5) surface soil on the growth of Agropyron elongatum (tall wheat grass), Cynodon dactylon (Bermuda grass), Lolium multiflorum (Italian ryegrass), and Trifolium repens (clover) in the tailings residue. The results from the core profiles indicated that adding FA (10 cm) or BC (15 cm) as a barrier layer between the cover soil and the tailings could increase pH, compared to the treatment with soil only. C. dactylon grew well and had a high cover (90-100%) in all the treatment plots except the control plots without any amendment. A. elongatum and L. multiflorum had a higher cover when grown in plots covered with a barrier layer using FA or BC (both with surface soil); than those grown in plots covered with surface soil only. Treatment plots receiving a thicker soil cover (30 cm) had a better dry weight yield than those with a thinner soil cover (15 cm), regardless of the barrier layer. The results from this study indicate that the use of either 15 cm BC or 10 cm FA as a barrier layer with surface soil, or the use of 38 tonnes PM/ha and 6 cm MC, were effective for the revegetation of Pb/Zn mine tailings. C. dactylon was the best species among the four species used for revegetation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-92
Number of pages6
JournalRestoration Ecology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2000

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation

User-Defined Keywords

  • Bermuda grass
  • Burnt coal
  • Clover
  • Fly ash
  • Italian ryegrass
  • Mushroom compost
  • Pb/Zn mine tailings
  • Reclamation


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