Effect of crude oil on the growth and anatomical features of Chromolaena odorata (L.) K.& R.
Investigations were carried out on the effect of Forcados Blend crude oil on seed germination, regeneration of stumps and anatomical features of leaves of Chromolaena odorata (L.) K. & R. Three concentration via. 25.0 cm3, 50.O cm3 and 75 cm3 applied to soil were found to suppress seed germination, regeneration and caused cellular and stomatal abnormalities. The present study suggests that this plant can serve as bioindicator of pollution in oil producing areas.
to Dejong (1980) crude oil spillage on soil makes it
unsatisfactory for plant growth. This is due to insufficient
aeration of the soil because of displacement of air from the
spaces between the soil particles by crude oil (Rowell,
1977). In Nigeria quite substantial amount of crude oil is
spilled annually, For example, Nwankwo (1989) reported 2,000
oil spillages in Nigeria between 1976 and 1988. During this
period about 2 x 106 barrels of crude oil were discharged in
black Polythene bags filled with soil were used for raising
plants. Seeds or stumps of C. odorata were either sown or
transplanted in these bags. "Forcados Blend" crude oil at
25.0 cm3, 50.0 cm3 and 75.0 cm3 with a control of water were
used for soil treatment and foliar application. A foliar
treatment with pure crude oil was also included. This
experiment was laid out in a randomized complete block
design with four replications.
from the seeds in the control which germinated after three
days of sowing, seeds sown in various concentrations of
crude oil failed to germinate. Morphological observations
carried out on plants from sprouted stumps have been
presented in Table. 1.
pollution has been shown to have adverse effects on plant
growth and these may range from morphological aberrations,
reduction in biomass to stomatal abnormalities (Sharma et
al., 1980). Similar reports have been made by Gill and
Sandota (1976), Ghouse et al., (1980), Wallace (1951)-and
Vostokova et al., (1961). Atuanya (1987) reported that waste
oil to cause a breakdown of soil texture followed by soil
dispersion. However, during the present study fresh crude
oil rather showed a coagulatory effect on the soil, binding
the soil particles into a water impregnable soil block which
seriously impair water drainage and oxygen diffusion.
Atuanya (1987) further states that seeds sown in such soil
failed to germinate. The results of the present study where
seeds failed to germinate even after 30 days of sowing
confirm the report of Atuanya (1987)
We are grateful to the kind gesture of Prof. F.I. Opute of the Department of Botany, University of Benin who kindly procured for us the crude oil used in this study from the Shell Petroleum Company, Nigeria (Ltd.).
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