Ecological Status of Soils and Vegetable Products in Cherkasy Region


O.I. Ulianych, S.V. Schetyna, G.Ya. Slobodianyk, A.G. Ternavskyi, O.V.Kuhniuk, I.A. Didenko

The condition of radionuclide soil contamination of Cherkasy region and vegetable products grown on them were investigated. It was established that the level of radionuclide contamination of soil and vegetable crops does not exceed pollution control standard and is actually 20-100 times lower compared to 1990-ies of 20th century. The fact that indicators of radionuclide content over the past decades are stable in most parts of the region is positive. Taking into account the cumulative properties of certain radionuclides, this problem should be the focus of scientists of different areas of expertise. It was investigated that the radionuclide contamination of soils and vegetable products grown on them in Cherkasy region depends on the structure and physical indicators of soil and its acidity, the depth of the samples taken, etc. It was suggested to continue systematic observation and monitoring of the level of radioactive contamination of the soil, vegetables and potatoes with the aim of reducing the content of radionuclides.
The climate change has become more arid in Ukraine over the past decades. The moisture deficit becomes more and more tangible from year to year for the cultivation of agricultural plants and vegetables in particular, which requires additional irrigation. Due to the weak root system vegetable plants require much water, and in case of shortage, they tend to accumulate harmful elements, including heavy metals in the parts that are consumed by humans afterwards. Also, due to the lack of moisture during the period of plant growth, the quality of primary produce for the processing industry will be substantially lower. In addition, the constant rise in the cost of energy and water requires new ways to save water and energy. The solution to this problem might be the introduction of polymeric substances (hydrogel) into the soil, which can accumulate a significant amount of moisture due to its porosity and provide plants with it during the required period. In this regard, in terms of Cherkasy region, we conducted a three-year study on the use of various forms of hydrogel for the cultivation of stalk celery. The content of some radionuclides in the soil was determined for the use of various forms of hydrogel in different depths of the soil.
The data of biometric parameters of stalk celery plants under the influence of hydrogel in the form of gel, tablets and granules was proposed. In particular, the height of the plants and the diameter of the stalks in the varieties Monarch, Anita and Diamant had a greater effect on granules and gel, while a significant increase in leaf area occurred under the action of tablets and granules. It was established that the use of the gel significantly increased the mass of the aboveground part of stalk celery plants.
The largest commodity yield was obtained under the use of gel: the Anita variety-43.5 t / ha, which exceeds the control for 10.8 t / ha; the Diamant variety-39.8 t / ha (+7.1 t / ha); the Monarch's variety-36.8 t / ha (+4.1 t / ha). The content of some indicators of the chemical composition of commercial green varieties of stalk celery depending on the use of different forms of hydrogel was determined as well. It was established that different forms of hydrogel in the studied varieties influenced the change in the biochemical composition of the commercial green of stalk celery differently.

Keywords: Soil; radionuclides; isotopes; radioactive contamination; cesium-137; strontium -90; γ-; β-radiation; vegetables; root celery; hydrogel

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