FRESENIUS ENVIRONMENTAL BULLETIN, vol.27, no.9, pp.6379-6387, 2018 (SCI-Expanded)
The contamination of agricultural land with heavy metals due to human activities raises environmental and health concerns. The purpose of this study is to analyze the geochemical fractions of heavy metals in cherry orchard soils, their potential sources, and the correlation between heavy metals in different fractions and the amount of heavy metal uptake by cherry trees. To that end, soil and leaf samples were taken from a total of ten cherry orchards located in the district of Lapseki (Canakkale, Turkey) with great potential for cherry production. The elements Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn in the samples were extracted into solvent by means of sequential extraction, using a different solvent system at each step, and the concentrations of the metals were determined via inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES). The analysis of the total content of heavy metals in the soils indicated that the metals were above the average agricultural land values, except for Cr and Zn. The results of the sequential extraction method showed that the percentage in the mobile phase was high for the elements Pb (73%), Cu (66%) and Zn (57%) and this originated from anthropogenic sources. These findings were further supported by the statistical analyses performed in the study. Principal component analysis pointed to three main sources for heavy metals: lithogenic sources for Cr and Ni; a combination of anthropogenic and lithogenic sources for Cd, Cu and Zn; and anthropogenic sources for Pb. The data were examined with hierarchical cluster analysis to investigate the correlation between the amount of heavy metals in each fraction of the soil samples and the amount of heavy metals in cherry leaves. The analysis demonstrated that there was a strong correlation between the heavy metals in cherry leaves (except for Cr and Ni) and more available fractions (acid soluble and reducible).