|The role of earthworms in agriculture and|
Yesterday I also completed the introduction of the paper and Pedro and Jose worked on regressions and tables for the results section.
Today, the main order of business was a field visit with some undergraduates to a contaminated site that people are using phytostabilisation on. Alexander was keen we set an example on timing. The trip was scheduled to leave at 1430. At 1435 we started to go to the bus.....prompt for Chilean time.
Phytoremediation has two main forms - in the first you use plants to extract contaminants from the ground. This is called phytoextraction. It works really well in the lab. and usually doesn't work in the field. The other main methods is phytostabilisation. This just involves getting plants to grow on "nasty" soil to stop the soil blowing away as dust and causing health problems when it is inhaled by people.
|The copper smelter in the background |
with the degraded "soil" in front
|Gully erosion - the soil is effectively|
sand with few if any roots to hold it
together. Gullies develop when it rains.
|Alexander's field trials. Along the|
fence are sandy "control" plots - the soil
as is. The plots in front of the people had
organic matter added allowing plants to
|Some of the pretty yellow flowers |
growing on the site.
We also made some more progress on the paper and discussed some other things we needed to do before writing it up fully.
Last day tomorrow.