Irrigation Using Permeable Paving as the Source of Water on the Soil; Plant Growth and Development

Ernest Okwudiri Nnadi, Alan P Newman, Steve Coupe, Tim Puehmeier, Les Duckers

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The pervious pavement system (PPS) has the potential to offer additional benefit in the areas of rainwater harvesting and storage. Recycling rainwater using the PPS would reduce over dependence on high quality mains water for low grade uses such as flushing of toilet, car washing, irrigation, e.t.c.
This paper reports experiments where water from geotextile incorporated pervious pavement system models on which 24ml per m2 of hydrocarbon was applied as a pollutant; and a single dose of 17g of NPK slow release nutrients (applied to encourage biodegradation) was administered to the surface was
used to irrigate tomato plants (Lycopersicon esculentum (fantasio hybrid)) and rye grass (LoliumPerenne) for 10 weeks. The growth, development and heavy metal content of the organs of these plants were compared to that of plants from untreated rigs and with plants treated with de-ionized water (DI) as
well as the soil pH and Electrical Conductivity (EC).
The comparative performance of the plants indicated that the water from the treated rigs supported plant growth more than the water from the untreated test rigs and DI. Heavy metal analysis of the plants organs indicated that the metals were at normal levels and below toxicity levels for plants and livestock.
Soil structure tests showed that there was no salinisation or serious soil structure issues. Heavy metal analysis of soil also indicated that the metals were within normal range and below toxicity levels.
These results further demonstrate the water recycling capability of the PPS for irrigation purposes and the need to harness this potential.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sept 2009
Event1st African Regional Geosynthetic Conference - Cape Town, South Africa
Duration: 2 Sept 20095 Sept 2009
Conference number: 1


Conference1st African Regional Geosynthetic Conference
Country/TerritorySouth Africa
CityCape Town


  • water re-use
  • irrigation
  • pervious pavements
  • hydrocarbons
  • eutrophication


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