The risks of sulfur addition on cadmium accumulation in paddy rice under different water-management conditions

Ya-nan Wan , Zhe Liu , Qi-qi Wang , Si-yu Huang , Ling-xuan Kong , Zhong Zhuang , Qi Wang , Hua-fen Li


Received June 01, 2021,Revised , Accepted August 12, 2021, Available online January 11, 2022

Volume 34,2022,Pages 101-111

Recently, the application of sulfur (S) has been recommended to control the accumulation of cadmium (Cd) in rice in contaminated paddy soil. However, the effects of exogenous S on Cd transfer in paddy rice systems under different water-management practices have not been systematically investigated. Pot experiments were performed to monitor the composition of soil pore water and the Cd accumulation in iron plaque and rice tissue were compared under different S (0 and 200 mg/kg Na2SO4) and water (continuous and discontinuous flooding) treatments. Sulfur application significantly increased Cd concentrations in soil pore water under discontinuous flooding conditions, but slightly reduced them under continuous flooding. Moreover, the oxidation/reduction potential (Eh) was the most critical factor that affected the Cd levels. When the Eh exceeded −42.5 mV, S became the second critical factor, and excessive S application promoted Cd dissolution. In addition, S addition elevated the Cd levels in iron plaque and reduced the Cd transfer from the iron plaque to rice roots. In rice, S addition inhibited Cd transfer from the rice roots to the straw; thus, more Cd was stored in the rice roots. Nevertheless, additional S application increased the Cd content in the rice grains by 72% under discontinuous flooding, although this effect was mitigated by continued flooding. Under simulated practical water management conditions, S addition increased the risk of Cd contamination in rice, suggesting that S application should be reconsidered as a paddy fertilization strategy.

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