Amelioration of Indian urban air pollution phytotoxicity in Beta vulgaris L. by modifying NPK nutrients

Anoop Singh, SB Agrawal, Dheeraj Rathore

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Air pollution levels are increasing at an alarming rate in many developing countries, including India and causing a potential threat to crop production. Field experiments were conducted to examine the impact of urban air pollutants on biomass (yield) and some physiological and biochemical parameters of palak (Beta vulgaris L. var. All Green) that grew from germination to maturity at seven periurban sites of Allahabad city having different concentrations of air pollutants under different levels of nutrients. The 6 h daily mean NO2, SO2 and O3 concentrations varied from 2.5 to 42.5, 10.6 to 65 and 3.5 to 30.8 μg m−3, respectively at different locations. Levels of air pollution showed significant negative correlations with photosynthetic pigments, protein, ascorbic acid and starch contents and catalase activity of palak leaves. A significant negative correlation was found for total biomass with SO2 (r = −0.92), NO2 (r = −0.85) and O3 (r = −0.91) concentrations. The increased fertilizer application (N, P and K) over the recommended dose resulted in a positive response by reducing losses in photosynthetic pigments and total biomass. This study proved that ambient air pollution of Allahabad city is influencing negatively to the growth and yield of palak plants. Air pollution caused adverse impact on growth and biomass accumulation of Beta vulgaris L. plants while higher fertility levels showed reduced yield losses.
Keyword: Air pollution,Yield,Beta vulgaris,Nutrients,Biomass
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)385-395
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes


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