NY98008 - Constructed Wetlands to Reduce Nutrient and Pathogen Loads in Recycled Nursery Water

A PhD study was conducted to examine the effectiveness of subsurface-flow reed beds in removing Nitrate and Phosphate from nursery runoff and suppressing Phytopthora cinnamomi. A separate study was also conducted to evaluate the contribution by reeds in the Nitrogen and Phosphorus removal processes.  Phytopthora cinnamomi, which was detected in runoff from commercial nurseries failed to survive continuous inoculation of reed beds. The ability of constructed wetlands to suppress plant pathogens has never previously been reported. Further research is required on the performance of a commercial reed bed to validate the experimental results and to enhance the commercial adoption of this technology. The long-term performance of wetlands is important and additional experiments are required to examine the sustainability of the nutrient removal processes.