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Use of treated wastewater for lettuce cultivation

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  131606586,  2013 Kansas City, Missouri, July 21 - July 24, 2013. (doi: @2013
Authors:   Vanessa Ribeiro Urbano, Thaís Grandizoli Mendonça, Antonio Claudio Testa Varallo, Reinaldo Gaspar Bastos, Claudinei Fonseca Souza
Keywords:   fertigation domestic sewage reuse of water irrigation.

The purpose of reusing water on agriculture is saving good quality water to noble uses and using treated wastewater for irrigation, enabling economic gain and sustainability in agriculture. The objective of this study was to analyze the changes on chemical and microbiological characteristics of a Red Latosol dystrophic soil after the cultivation of lettuce irrigated with treated wastewater. The experiment was conducted in a greenhouse at the Center of Agricultural Science of UFSCar, in Araras/SP/Brazil. Lettuce seedlings were irrigated by drip using treated wastewater and potable water with 4 replications for each one. After the maturation, the plants were collected along with soil samples. The physical and chemical properties and heterotrophic microorganism and coliforms were analyzed. The parameters sodium adsorption ratio (SAR), BOD, magnesium, calcium, sodium, potassium, nitrate, chlorine, turbidity, pH, electrical conductivity (EC) and coliforms were analyzed on the irrigation water. The values of exchangeable sodium percentage and SAR on the plots irrigated with treated wastewater indicated soil salinization. The EC kept the value according to the standard for irrigation water in both treatments. It was observed an increase on soil of some nutrients (K, Ca, H, Al, S) after the cultivation. It was not observed presence of Escherichia coli on lettuce leaves and soil. The total coliforms at lettuces presented a risk of contamination for human health due the possible contamination. The treated wastewater did not cause damages on physical properties of soil and promoted increase of nutrients on soil.

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