M.S. Thesis Defense in Land Rehabilitation: Dorjderem Sukhragchaa
- Friday, July 1, 2016 from 1:00pm to 5:00pm
- Animal Biosciences Building, Room 134 - view map
Consistency of Plant Heavy Metal Tolerance through Successive Generations: Re-visiting the Development of Acid Tolerant Releases Project, BPMC.
Adviser: Catherine Zabinski
Deploying well-adapted and ecologically-appropriate plant materials is a core component of a successful restoration project. Since 1995, the Bridger Plant Material Center (BPMC), USDA-NRCS, has been developing potential seed mixes for revegetating or restoring native plant communities around smelter-impacted sites in the Anaconda-Butte area of Montana. As of 2016, six releases have been developed and increased by commercial seed growers. However, the seeds are increased in non-contaminated soil. If the plants had evolved heavy-metal tolerance traits in a comparatively short time, the speed at which they could reverse their metal tolerance is unclear, particularly due to the seed increasing practices. In this study we used greenhouse experiments to test the differences between wild collected seeds from (G0) contaminated sites and the successive generations (Gn) which were cultivated in non-contaminated soils. We used four to six generations of seeds for each of the two forbs (fuzzytongue penstemon- Penstemon eriantherus and silverleaf phacelia- Phacelia hastata) and two grass species (slender wheatgrass- Elymus trachycaulus and Nevada bluegrass- Poa secunda). After growing for 10 to 12 weeks, plants were harvested and measured for seedling emergence and biomass. For the two forbs, our data supported the null hypothesis that there is no difference between any of the generations. The two grasses grown from third-generation seeds had better seedling emergence and greater biomass than wild collected seed when grown in amended soil.
- Department of Land Resources and Environmental Sciences