Lombardy poplar

scientific name: Populus nigra 'Italica'
Lombardy poplar
Photo: UPB-Projektgruppe Trier

A deciduous tree typical of ecosystems close to dense conurbations and an indicator for the characterisation of the immission situation during the vegetation period.

The Lombardy poplar was chosen as a deciduous tree typical of ecosystems close to dense urban settlements, which supply conditions of growth considerably different in many ecologic respects from nearly natural ecosystems.

It meets the exacting requirements of specimen reproducibility and the geographical comparability of findings, above all because of its consistent genetic pattern and its resistance to pollution.

The leaves are the target organ. Sampling takes place in the late summer before the leaves begin to change colour  from August to mid-September.

Guideline for Sampling and Sample Processing Lombardy poplar (Populus nigra 'Italica')

Target organs/Matrices

Leaves Caused by their prominent reticular venation leaves of the poplar adsorbe a considerable amount of particles. Older leaves are investigated to cover the burdon of a whole growing season.

Sampling area

Saarländischer Verdichtungsraum Important, old-industrialised conurbation in Germany.
Verdichtungsraum Halle-Leipzig Region in the chemical triangle of Central Germany


Metals Eighty percent of all elements on earth are metals
Nonmetals Only eighteen elements in the periodic table
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons Group of organic compounds with at least three condensed six-membered rings
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl compounds Organic compounds which are fully (per-) or partially (poly-) fluorinated
Stable Isotopes Atoms of one element with different weights
Flame Retardants Flame retardants reduce the flammability of objects
Supplementary parameters Additional information for the interpretation of contamination data

Sampling period

1991 - 2019

Biometric parameters