Abstract The synergistic activity between plants and microorganisms may contribute to the implementation of proactive management strategies in the stabilization of contaminated sites, although heavy metals, such as cadmium (Cd), are potentially toxic to them. The aim of this study was to evaluate the degree of tolerance to Cd contamination (supplying twice 40 mg kg−1 of Cd) in poplar cuttings [clone I-214, P. × euramericana (Dode) Guinier] inoculated or not with two concentrations of Serratia marcescens strain (1×107 CFU/g and 2×107 CFU/g of potting mix). The response of the plant– bacteria system to excess Cd was investigated with special reference to the structural traits of plants and the functional efficiency of bacteria. Bacterial colonization and substrate components were previously assessed in order to define the best solution for formulating the experimental plant growth media. The tested plant–bacteria association, especially when bacteria were provided in double concentration, stimulated specific tolerance mechanisms to Cd through the promotion of the poplar growth. Inoculated plants produced larger leaves and increased stem diameter, while roots grew longer and wider in Cd-treated plants. The effect of bacterial inoculum on plant growth traits and metal partitioning in plant organs was assessed in order to define the potential of this poplar clone to be a suitable candidate for phytostabilization of Cdcontaminated soil. The final effect of the inoculation with bacteria, which alleviated the metal load and Cd phytotoxicity due to their bioaccumulation ability, suggests promising phytostabilization potential of these plant–bacteria associations.
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1007/s11356-015-5097-z|
|Codice identificativo ISI:||WOS:000366637300024|
|Codice identificativo Scopus:||2-s2.0-84949819087|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|