Floating Treatment Wetlands Research

At Clemson University, Dr. White and her research lab are assessing the potential of floating wetlands to remediate nutrient rich and poor runoff. 

2011 Study

Evaluation of floating treatment wetlands for nutrient removal in stormwater retention ponds throughout SC.

Study sites:

  1. Mt. Pleasant, SC
  2. North Myrtle Beach, SC (2 sites)
  3. Spartanburg, SC

Study Site 1 Study Site 3

Mt. Pleasant Floating Treatment Wetland Spartanburg, SC floating wetland site

Study Site 2

North Myrtle Beach floating treatment wetlands Floating treatment wetlands Myrtle Beach, SC site

2010 Study

Mesocosm scale study evaluating nutient uptake into Canna flaccida in aerated and non-aerated conditions, with various planting densities and percent coverage.  

Poster presented at 2011 American Society for Horticultural Science Conference

2009 Studies 

Mesocosm scale study evaluating nutrient uptake into Juncus effusus in aearated and non-aerated conditions, with various planting densities and percent coverage.

Floating treatment wetlands were established with Canna flaccidaJuncus effusus, and Agrostis sp.  After 6 months of sampling we found the floating wetlands reduced both nitrogen and phosphorus effluent concentrations.  Nitrogen and phosphorus removal were consistent in both the pond and vegetated channel floating wetland treatments.

Poster presented at 2010 National Water conference

2008 Study

Floating Wetland Poster

The floating mats were established with Canna flaccida, Juncus effusus, Eleocharis montana, and Agrostis sp.  After 5 months of sampling we found the floating wetlands reduced both nitrogen and phosphorus effluent concentrations.  Nitrogen and phosphorus removal were consistent in both the pond and vegetated channel floating wetland treatments. 

 

Floating wetlands may have great potential when used to “polish” nutrient-rich water.  They are easy to install, maintain, and harvest, and may prove to be an economically feasible treatment technology for polishing water quality to very low phosphorus effluent concentrations.

 

 

For any additional information (full size posters) regarding floating treatment wetlands please contact Dr. White (see page maintenance information below).

 

This research was funded by the Horticulture Research Institute (2010-2011) and by Beeman's Nursery in New Smyrna Beach, FL (2008-2009).