1998 - 1999

This page is meant to allow exchange of information and suggestions between people interested in Phytoremediation.
To publish your requests on this page, send me an e-mail at

From the beginning of December, 1998, we have started operation of a discussion forum about phytoremediation. We suggest you to subscribe to the discussion forum and send your requests to the mail newsgroup!

You can answer directly the questions asked, a copy of your reply will be mailed also to my address. If the reply is of general interest, it will be published in this page.

#48 On February, 15th, 2000, Nelson Marmiroli wrote:

Dear colleagues,

we are working on a project regarding phytodepuration of waste water containing different kind of pollutants (heavy metals, pesticides, detergents, etc.). In order to find naturally or artificially (laboratory) selected plants, we are looking for cultivars of Typha latifoglia and Phragmites australis that are collected or selected under particular environmental conditions. We already have some plants from high polluted sites such as sugar beet transforming industries, but we would like to extend our screening of cultivars and applications. Of course your help will be really appreciated and could be a start for further cooperation. Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions.


Prof. N. Marmiroli

Please reply to:

Prof. N. Marmiroli

            Department of Environmental Science
            University of Parma
            Viale delle Scienze
            43100 Parma- Italy
            tel. 39-0521-905606
            fax. 39-0521-905665

#47 On January, 4th, 1999, David Glass wrote:

As some of you know, for the past 2 years or so, I have studied the phytoremediation industry and its market potential, and have given several talks and had several publications on this topic. I am now planning for a series of talks on "International Phytoremediation Activities" this spring, and as the title implies, I would like to focus to a larger extent on activities outside the United States. I will likely also use this information, and others, to publish an update of my phytoremediation market report sometime in 1999.

I am therefore writing to ask if any Phytonet members have any new information on their own phytoremediation research or commercial activities, or on other activities within their country. Of most interest to me would be news about companies pursuing phytoremediation, about field remediations or demonstration projects (or other ongoing research projects), other phyto research projects or consortia, and any government programs to promote phytoremediation or support research activities. I am aware of the several research proposals that were made last year, and I would be grateful for any updates on the status of these projects.

Please respond to the phone, fax, mail or e-mail shown below, or contact me directly with any questions. Thank you very much for any assistance you can provide.

David J. Glass
D. Glass Associates, Inc.
124 Bird Street
Needham, MA 02492
PHONE: (617) 726-5474
FAX: (781) 449-8045

#46 On January, 29th, 1999, Julian Hutchinson wrote:

Does anyone have any information regarding phytochelators.  I am interested to find out the chemistry, forms and sources of these chelators.
Thank you.

Julian Hutchinson

University of Nottingham
School of Biological Sciences,
Division of Environmental Science,
Sutton Bonington Campus,
Sutton Bonington,
England,  U.K.

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#45 On January, 29th, 1999, Marty Tsai wrote:

Do Phytoremediation and Pasture restoration/revegetation have something in common?  If you do think so, I am a graduate student doing research and a potential project in Pasture restoration on clay lands.  I am particularly interested in such aspects like:
 * Sites: selection, restoration, seedbed preparation,...
 * Plant species: selection and seeding,...
 * Management after revegetation (to be utilized by cattle).
 * Any information related to land restoration will be greatly appreciated.
Nowadays, through the internet, almost everything is possible.  Maybe, I'll meet the right people to exchange the necessary information.  So, I am looking forward greatly to receiving your reply.
Thank a lot for reading my mail.

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#44 On February, 12th, 1999, Burke Jenkins wrote:

I am a fifth year landscape architecture student looking to do a project on the possibilities of design using phytoremediation techniques on a site in Michigan.  I am fairly new to the topic and still looking to gain some insight into it particulary dealing with the types of plants used for (Heavy metal contaminants) and the harvesting schedule as well as how deeply into the soil phytoremedition can have an effect.  If anyone can point me in the right direction or send me info on someone to contact I would greatly appreciate it.  Thanks

Burke Jenkins

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#43 On February, 26th, 1999, Nick LaDuca wrote:

We are an industrial laundry that has a minor ground water problem with volatiles (BTEX).
Read an article a while back about Poplar trees helping. How could I find out more about solving this particular problem?
Thanks for your help
Nick LaDuca

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#42 On March 3rd, 1999 Jana Erickson wrote:

I have a BSc in Botany and am currently completing a degree in Applied Environmental Management.  I am a newcomer to the world of phytoremediation but I am extremely interested in finding out more as it fits in nicely with my education and experience.  For my degree I must complete a practicum.
The company I am working for during this practicum has asked me to do a feasibility study on various treatment methods of salt affected soils and groundwater.  One of the options is using salt tolerant plants.  My question is: what plants will survive in high salts, provide erosion control, and uptake salts from the soil and/or possibly groundwater?  If anyone can provide an answer or lead me in the right direction I would greatly appreciate it.
Thank you,

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#41 On March 5th, 1999 Lynn Bonifacio wrote:

I am 4th year Biology Major and for our undergraduate thesis, we tested the possible anti-inflammatory effects of Pistia stratiotes L., an effective heavy metal accumulator (specially lead and copper). If  you know of any or related clinical studies on these plants (phytochelators or metallophytes) can you please e-mail them to me ASAP. I will truly be grateful to anyone
who could be of great help.

Thank you so much.

Lynn B. Bonifacio

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#40 On March 5th, 1999 Susan Patey wrote:

I have recently been reading about protecting water quality in developing countries and the economic constraints (i.e., not
enough money to pay for water treatment facilities). Therefore, the authors, Gordon Young, James Dooge and John Rodda, discuss protecting water sources with riparian management. Does anyone have any references or experience with phytoremediation and water protection in developing countries? Please respond as soon as possible as I would like to take this position in a presentation I have to give at the end of the month.

Susan Patey
Masters Student (Environmental Science)
University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada               phone: (403) 282-1157
413-2903 Unwin Road N.W.      fax: (403) 282-1157
Calgary, AB                   cell: (403)816-9564
T2N 4M4

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#39 On March 5th, 1999 Susan Patey wrote:

I am exploring recovery of an old cresote lumber yard in Winnepeg using three dimensions, i.e., using height as well as depth and breadth to add complexity to the plant community and speed 'recovery' (wildlife habitation) of the area. The historical landscape is NOT the goal of the project (noone has a clue what was once there) but exploring man-made landscapes that can support wildlife habitats with human activities. Presently I am exploring landscape ecology resources but would be interested in any comments and references anyone has to share.

Susan Patey
Masters Student (Environmental Science)
University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada               phone: (403) 282-1157
413-2903 Unwin Road N.W.      fax: (403) 282-1157
Calgary, AB                   cell: (403)816-9564
T2N 4M4

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#38 On March 21st, 1999, Charlene Gruber wrote:

I am currently using hybrid poplar trees to remediate a site which used to be used as a co-op. The site has high concentrations of ammonia (600ppm), pH (7.9), and salts (13.2). I'm trying to determine at what concentrations the above are toxic to poplars so we can amend the soil. I would also be interested in cultivar names of poplars that are currently used for remediation.

Thank you very much

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#37 On March 21st, 1999, Danni S. Judy wrote:

I am interested in altering the pH in a stormwater pond using plants. The pond is 15 acres, 15' max depth, straight sides. The pH is typically >9SU. Tests have shown the strongest contributor to the pH is blue-green algae (samples will increase to above 10SU in the lab in light). The pond is low in nutrients, i.e. phosphorous and organics, and high in iron. Total alkali concentration is 170ppm. It contains healthy fish, alligators, etc. If plants cannot be used, we will be forced by our state regulatory agency to dose with chemicals that will probably harm the aquatic life. We have three collection ponds that can be maintained at any desired depth, so we could plant in these and let the effects carry over into the larger pond. Anyone have any experience with this? What plants to use?

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#36 On March 25th, 1999, Greg Lee wrote:

My name is Gregory Lee. I am a 3rd year bio-Resource Engineering student at the University of British Columbia. I wanted to post this on the info page to see if there are any possible research or student positions available in this field. I am interested in pursuing my thesis on this subject, and would really appreciate an opportunity to work with a professor or phytoremediation company for the summer. I can be contacted by email, and can send a resume ASAP.

Thanks, Greg Lee

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#35 On March 26th, 1999, Caron Walton wrote:

I am researching into phytoremediation and how it fits into the reclamation of contaminated land in the uk, this has had to be abandoned for lack of information and efforts concentrated on USA information. Are there any figures or information avaiable as to how effective this type of remediation is and what the land is used for once remediated?
Would land remediated this way be suitable for parklands and public use?
Will contamination taken up by plants get into the food chain?
When was contaminated land first discovered, and what was done about it?

Thanking in advance anyone who can help with questions.

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#34 On March 26th, 1999, Ken Moss wrote:

Dear Phytonet users,
I am undertaking research into the use of phytoremediation techniques (e.g. reed bed systems) for bioaccumulation (and subsequent removal) of heavy metals from surface waters. This includes: whether techniques are successful, which species are most efficient, what land area is required, cost implications, etc. I will be conducting my MSc dissertation project in the Hron River basin, Slovakia in the summer and propose to assess the situation there for phytoremediation possibilities. I would greatly appreciate any information on this subject.

Thank you,
Ken Moss (BSc).
(currently studying for MSc in Environmental Management, University ofNottingham.)

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#33 On March 26th, 1999, Catherine Griffiths wrote:

I am a second year Environmental Science student, currently embarking on a project dealing with the phytoremediation of chromium, from contaminated soil. Does anyone know of any Chromium hyperaccumulating plants?
As this is a vital part of my project, I will be happy to hear from anyone who might have any information, or be able to help me.


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#32 On April 9th, 1999, Mikal Jakubal wrote:

I'm looking for information on lead hyperaccumulators. I've got a piece of land that had a dozen or so old batteries scattered around the site when I bought it. The neighbors used to melt down lead pipes there years ago as well and some of the residue likely escaped into the soil. I only just discovered this! I want to grow vegetables and fruit on the site (area of probable contamination: <1000 square meters) so decontaminating it first is important. Many of the batteries were broken open and then buried. I found them while doing earth moving with heavy equipment so the soil was scattered around quite a bit, unfortunately. I'm in the process of getting testing done to assess the level of contamination, but due to cost, this is taking a while. I would be extremely grateful for any information on: 1) cheap sources for soil lead testing; 2) info on ways to decrease bioavailability of lead that cannot be removed; 3) specific lead hyperaccumulators (by species name and common name, if available) that will grow in Northern temperate climates; 4) info on access to seeds for these plants; 5) lead accumulation rates of common fruit and vegetable plants, i.e., which ones are least likely to uptake lead. Thank you for any help you can lend me.

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#31 On April 26th, 1999, Russell Hamlin wrote:

I am a doctoral student at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in the Plant and Soil Science Department. I am looking for reliable sources of plant material for my phytoremediation research. I am interested in plants that are metal accumulators or hyperaccumulators of Zn, Mn, Cu, Pb and Cd (primarily Zn, Mn, and Cu.) Any information that may point me in the right direction will be greatly appreciated. I can be contacted at

#30 On April 30th, 1999, Terry Priest wrote:

We are putting together a proposal for the City of Merced, CA in which we would like to use phytoremediation as a tool for cleaning up the soil in what was previously a warm-up area for crop dusters. The soil has some DDT, Dieldrin, and Toxaphone contaminates. The site is 400 ft long and 80 ft wide. The original plan was to remove the soil to a depth of one foot, and stock pile the soil. We see phytoremediation as a better option, but we need some specific information about what type of plants would work well in this situation, the process of getting the site ready, maintaining the site and what the going rates for such a plan would be. We would appreciate any information.

Please respond to Terry Priest, Principal
Environmental Assessment Services

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#29 On May, 12th, 1999, Elizabeth Pilon-Smits wrote:

I would like to know if anything is known about the ability of plants to degrade PAHs. Can they take up PAHs, or excrete compounds that can help degrade them?
I know that some grasses can reduce soil PAHs, but is that due to plant degradation or do the plants assist soil microbes?
I will appreciate any information.
Thank you
Elizabeth Pilon-Smits.

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#28 On May, 25th, 1999, David Tsao wrote:

 Dear Phytonetters,

     Does anyone have any references on analytical methods for analyzing
     plant tissues (leaves and stems) for BTEX and TPH?


     David Tsao, Ph.D.

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#27 On Sep, 9th, 1999, Alan Darlington wrote:


I'm Alan Darlington of the Department of Plant Agriculture at the University of Guelph (ontario Canada). We have several projects which may be of interest to you and your group where we are using 'phyto-filters' to remove VOCs from indoor air. The system uses a multicomponent, ecologically diverse biofilter with living moss as the principle filter substrate.

The system is designed to supplement the need to go outside to get 'fresh air' thereby reducing the energy consumption (and ecological foot print) of the building. We can remove a wide range of VOCs down to the ten's of ppbv level with no negative impact on air quality.

here are our web sites:

If you'd like more info Including a better abstract and listing of publications please contact at this email address:

Thanks Alan Darlington

PhD University of Guelph

#26 On September 17th, 1998, Zorione Aierbe wrote:

Hello, I am Zorione Aierbe.
                I am doing my final project in tha Van Hall Instituut, related to Phytoremediation. I am working on a Zinc contaminated soil, stored in a dumpsite after being removed from the Canals of Leeuwarden (The Netherlands). I would like to analyse the metal uptake of differente tyoes of grass onto this clay- type soil. I would be very pleased if you could send information about this subject, the most siutable species, the rates of growth, etc.
Thank you veru much,
                                                Zorione Aierbe.

You can answer me to this address:

#25 On September 17th, 1998, Prof. Nelson Marmiroli wrote:

Biotechnology project on phytoremediation of salt affected lands with crop plants

We are preparing a EC project to be submitted within the programme “Quality of life and management of living resources”, deadline 15 November 1999, (Key action 5 Sustainable agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and integrated development of rural areas including mountain areas)

Aims of the project:

We would like to offer participation to industrial partners interested in:

If you are interested in participating to this proposal please contact Prof. Nelson Marmiroli at the following address:

            Prof. N. Marmiroli

            Department of Environmental Science
            University of Parma
            Viale delle Scienze
            43100 Parma- Italy
            tel. 39-0521-905606
            fax. 39-0521-905665