Justina Chibuogwu Orji, Ifechukwu Enyinnaya Adieze, Rose Nkechinyere Nwabueze, Geoffrey Okike C. Onyeze
Microbiology Department, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria
Biochemistry Department, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria
Key words: Bacterial inoculants, Bioaugmentation, Hydrocarbon removal, Plant growth stimulation, Polluted soil.
The effect of bioaugmentation of crude oil polluted soils on the growth of Panicum maximum was examined in a green house study. Weathered polluted soil samples (2% w/w) in experimental pots were planted and inoculated with hydrocarbon utilizing bacterial species (Micrococcus sp. RZ1, Pseudomonas sp. RZIII, Bacillus sp. RZIII, and Bacillus sp. GSIII). Samples of unpolluted soil and polluted soil (2% w/w) were also maintained as controls. At intervals from the second to the tenth week after planting (WAP), three replicates each of the plants in soil samples with different treatments were randomly chosen, and then analyzed for plants’ shoot height, plants’ biomass and plants’ leaf area. The results of the study showed that the inoculation of polluted soils with competent hydrocarbon utilizing species offered some advantages to growth stimulation. The shoot height, shoot weight and root weight of P. maximum in polluted soil bioaugmented with Pseudomonas sp. RZIII and Bacillus sp. RZIII increased significantly more than those in polluted soil samples 10 WAP. The result highlights the importance of bioaugmentation with indigenous bacterial isolates that have adapted to the environment of application.
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