A field trial was conducted at a site in Cam Binh commune, Ha Tinh province, Vietnam, highly contaminated with organo-pesticides. The phyto-Fenton process was applied to remove pesticide residues in soils. In addition to magnetite (Fe3O4) materials added to the soils, fertilizers and elicitors for oxidative burst were also added in the different experimental treatments. Dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane (DDT) and isomers were removed in all experimental lots. The removal efficiency was highest in lot B1, a site where only iron materials were added. The removal efficiency and the final content of DDTs in B1 were 98.4% and 0.009 mg kg−1, respectively. In the presence of elicitors, the conversion of DDT to dichloro-diphenyl-dichloroethylene was more favorable. Analysis of soil properties indicated that the phyto-Fenton process can occur at neutral soil pH, and when there are only small changes in soil organic carbon content and cation exchange capacities. Shifts in the composition of the microbial communities were observed. Further studies on the interactions between materials added to soil, plants, and the soil microbiome are needed to understand the mechanism of action of the phyto-Fenton process during soil remediation.
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