Herbaceous plants, such as annuals, perennials, bulbs and ornamental grasses are generally the best choices for use on a septic drain field. Ornamental grasses also offer the advantages of having a fibrous root system that holds soil in place, and providing year-round cover.Herbaceous plants, such as annuals, perennials, bulbs and ornamental grasses are generally the best choices for use on a
Septic drain field – Wikipedia
. Ornamental grasses also offer the advantages of having a fibrous root system that holds soil in place, and providing year-round cover.
What are the best septic tank treatments?
- The most beneficial septic tank treatment used by septic experts is the biological treatment. This uses enzymes or non-pathogenic/cultured bacteria that really accelerate the breakdown of the solid materials in the waste water.
What can I use to cover my septic tank?
The Do’s For Hiding Your Septic Tank
- Plant tall native grasses with fibrous roots around the opening to conceal the tank lid from view.
- Place a light statue, bird bath or potted plant over the septic lid.
- Septic tank risers and covers are an alternative to concrete and blend into green grass.
Can you put anything on top of a septic tank?
Building over septic tanks It is never recommended to build a structure over any portion of your septic system. No permanent structures should be built over any portion of the system, but at least in this case the homeowner can pump out their septic tank.
Should you cover your septic tank?
You should cover your tank up with something that can be easily moved when you need to move it. Animals Need to Stay Away from Your Septic Tank System: Keep animals away from your septic system. It is not a good idea to grow a vegetable garden to cover up your septic tank pumping system though.
Should a septic tank lid be covered with dirt?
A septic tank stores the solids from drains and needs to be pumped out about every two years, so it’s not a good idea to cover the area — you need to always be sure where to find the tank. Modern septic systems have an 8-inch plastic pipe that rises from the tank to a few inches above grade.
Can you put mulch over septic tank?
Gardens. Landscape fabric, plastic, bark, or mulch should not be used over your septic system. These materials reduce air exchange while bark and mulch also retain excess moisture. Adding more than a few inches of soil over the drainfield, such as for raised beds, limits air exchange and can lead to compaction.
Is it OK to cover septic tank lids?
If you have a traditional septic system, the tank should be pumped every 3-5 years. That means that the septic lids should be accessible every 3-5 years. You can use almost any temporary, movable objects to cover your lids, like: Mulch (but not landscaping)
Can I put pavers over septic tank?
You can’t build a paver patio on top of a septic tank, and doing so could be against the planning laws of your state or local area. Septic tanks can take very little weight without getting damaged, and you’ll also need access to the tank in the future too. You shouldn’t build a deck on one either.
Can you put hot tub over septic tank?
Installing a hot tub above septic components can cause significant damage, easily dislodging or even crushing the pipes in your septic drainfield.
Can I put gravel over my leach field?
Adding gravel, bark or other fill over the drainfield can disrupt the soil’s process and may harm your system. Only the addition a very thin layer of topsoil is acceptable. Never plant vegetable gardens on or near a drainfield. This type of wastewater is best kept away from any plants you plan on ingesting.
Can you put a greenhouse over a septic field?
A greenhouse can be erected on a septic field to grow certain types of plants. The greenhouse should not have permanent foundations, which could easily damage the septic system. Do not plant directly into the ground over a septic field, as the plants could absorb contaminants released by the system.
What to plant around septic tanks?
Herbaceous plants, such as annuals, perennials, bulbs and ornamental grasses are generally the best choices for use on a septic drain field. Ornamental grasses also offer the advantages of having a fibrous root system that holds soil in place, and providing year-round cover.
Do septic tanks need to be airtight?
Septic tanks need to be watertight. The riser should be sealed to the top of the tank and the riser cover should be sealed to the riser with butyl rubber or some other flexible sealant. No liquid should enter or leave the tank.
Should I install a riser on my septic tank?
Having a riser in place can also significantly reduce the cost of septic tank maintenance over time through the ease of access and time on the job saved. Plus you will be spared digging up your lawn every time as well.
What Should You Plant Over the Septic System?
Among the plants seen here are creeping phlox, dwarf boxwood, hebe,thyme, and iris, all of which are deemed acceptable for planting over a septic field.
Interested in Onsite Systems?
Creeping phlox, dwarf boxwood, hebe, thyme, and iris are examples of plants that would be considered safe to grow over a septic field.
STEER CLEAR OF THESE
Your knowledge of the first guideline of planting around a septic system includes knowing to avoid thirsty plants that have deep roots. Water-loving trees such as willows, birch, silver maple, elm, beech, walnut, and linden, according to Nielsen, should be kept at a safe distance from homes. The use of aggressive, dense ground coverings that will interfere with the evaporation process, such as pachysandra, cotoneaster and periwinkle, is discouraged, according to her. Others to stay away from because of their aggressive roots include vines and wisteria, as well as bittersweet, morning glory, campsis, and hops.
- Any species of bamboo
- Any plants with very strong lateral root development
- Any other trees with a particularly strong lateral root growth Pond grasses that thrive in water and grow in vast quantities
- Clematis native to the area (self-seeding)
- Cedars (with the exception of genetic dwarfs)
- Vinca stolonifera
Prairie grasses and meadows can be no-mow and can prevent driving across septic fields, both of which are beneficial characteristics, leading some people to believe they are desirable. Nielsen, on the other hand, believes that they are frequently poor alternatives for the septic field. The prairie grasses and perennials contain some of the longest, tangliest, and strongest roots on the planet, according to Dr. Smith. Prairie grasses have vigorous roots that are good at searching out water sources such as perforated drainpipes as a result of their drought-resistant characteristics.
While cedars are beautiful, they may be a nuisance when they grow next to a septic field.
When homeowners insist on planting trees with significant lateral root development, encourage them to take a deep breath and wait.
The owners of landscape-intensive yards must be cautioned not to plant vegetables over the septic field as this might cause serious problems.
They are cautioned, however, that disturbing the soil with these annual crops is detrimental to the septic system, and that the wastewater may include diseases that can be transmitted to the edibles.
GO AHEAD AND PLANT THESE
While typical lawns are permitted for use over septic systems, Nielsen notes that many homes are moving away from that type of ground cover that requires a lot of upkeep and requires a lot of water. She cites a few grass kinds that are commonly considered to be superior than others. Alternatives that are less risky include:
- Eco-grass and fescues that have been pre-mixed
- The tufted fescues, the feather grass, the pennisetum, and the deschampsia are examples of small grasses. Plants that look like grass, such as mounding mondo grass, liatris, liriope, and armeria
“Lawns are not particularly environmentally friendly. Most animals do not thrive in them, but we still have children and dogs, who enjoy running about on them,” she explains. “They are also a terrific location for youngsters to play.” As an alternative to standard lawns, Nielsen advises drought-tolerant plants with short, fibrous root systems that are hardy in your area and can thrive in both sun and shadow situations, depending on the situation. Her top recommendations include the use of microclover/ecograss/carex pensylvanica dwarf, the introduction of white clover, carpets (thyme, sedums, low-growing ground coverings), shallow, short/soft rooted perennials, bulb/corm/rhizome/tubers in lawns, and moss in the landscape.
Another option for adding interest to the landscape without putting the septic system at danger is to intersperse annuals or bulbs throughout the ground cover, according to Nielsen.
Furthermore, the newer dwarf tree and shrub kinds do not pose the same threat as their larger counterparts.
Fibrous root systems are found in a variety of shrubs including boxwood, potentilla, daphne, and choisya, as well as the euonymous and hebe.
CONSIDER LAND USAGE
Most of the time, homeowners employ Nielsen to design a landscaping plan after a site has been created and a home has been constructed. Developers and septic installers, on the other hand, should incorporate a landscape designer earlier in the process in order to ensure the greatest possible use of the site, according to Nielsen. According to Nielsen, the position of the septic field is frequently dictated by the land’s topography, and it is typically the flattest, sunniest section of the property that is also the greatest location for intensive horticulture.
“These choices have a negative impact on their capacity to use property that they have paid a lot of money for, which is unfortunate,” Nielsen adds.
They aren’t considering how the homeowner will wish to make use of the property while making their decisions.
My task would be a lot simpler if I had done a bit more planning ahead of time. Nielsen hopes to educate residents about septic systems and perhaps preserve a few septic systems as a result of her landscaping presentation and getting to know the pumping specialists on Bowen Island she is visiting.
Landscaping Around a Septic System: Do’s and Don’ts
Riverside, California 92504-17333 Van Buren Boulevard Call us right now at (951) 780-5922. A big number of large plants, patios, and other structures are likely to be absent from the region surrounding your septic system. Indeed, conventional thinking is that you should avoid both large landscaping and septic systems in the vicinity of one other. This is a reasonable guideline to follow since roots can entangle themselves around pipes and cause them to burst. Plants, on the other hand, can absorb excess rainfall and decrease erosion, so landscaping around your septic system might not be such a bad idea after all.
You don’t want roots to penetrate the perforations and clog the system, so keep them out.
Landscaping Do’s and Don’ts
- Plants that do not require a lot of water should be used. This stops plant roots from looking for water and interfering with your system’s functionality. Make use of herbaceous plants with shallow roots, such as flowers and ground cover. When planting quarts, gallons, or plugs, make sure to keep your plants somewhat near to one another to prevent erosion. This will help restrict the growth of weeds. If you have any trees or shrubs growing in your yard in the future, consider how their development may impede access to the septic tank lids, leach field, and sprinkler system. Using a potted plant, riser cover, or lawn ornament just above your access hatch, you may mark the position of your access hatch. When it comes time to dig it up, it will be much simpler to do so. Allow tall Kentucky bluegrass or another type of lawn to grow over the plot of ground that serves as a septic tank cover. Consider the benefits of growing perennials. Because both grasses and perennials have a shallow root structure, they should have no negative impact on your tank or drain field. Make use of tiny, non-woody groundcovers to disguise weeds. Think about planting shallow-rooted trees and vegetation (such as cherry trees, dogwood trees, holly bushes, azalea shrubs, and boxwood shrubs) in the area around your septic system, but make sure they are at least 10-15 feet away from the tank.
- Plants that demand less water should be used. There will be no root exploration and no interference with your system as a result of this. Flowers and ground cover are examples of herbaceous plants with shallow roots. In order to minimize erosion while planting in quarts, gallons, or plugs, you should space your plants somewhat near to one another. Additionally, weeds will be suppressed by this method
- If you have any trees or shrubs growing in your yard in the future, consider how their development may impact access to the septic tank lids, leach field, and sprinkler system. Using a potted plant, riser cover, or lawn ornament just above the access hatch, you may mark the position of your access hatch. When it comes time to dig it up, it will be much simpler. Grass the piece of ground that contains the septic tank with tall Kentucky bluegrass or another type of grass. Consider making a permanent garden out of perennial flowers. Greaves and perennial plants have shallow root systems that should not do any damage to your tank or drain field
- However, annual plants have a deeper root structure. Compact non-woody groundcovers should be used instead of large shrubs. Think about planting shallow-rooted trees and vegetation (such as cherry trees, dogwood trees, holly bushes, azalea shrubs, and boxwood shrubs) in the vicinity of your septic system, but keep them at least 10-15 feet away from the tank.
- Make use of plants that do not demand a lot of water. There is no longer any chance of plant roots seeking water and interfering with your system. Consider using shallow-rooted herbaceous plants such as flowers or ground cover. When planting quarts, gallons, or plugs, make sure to keep your plants somewhat near together to prevent erosion. This will also keep weeds at bay. If you have any trees or shrubs growing in your yard in the future, consider how that growth may impede access to the septic tank lids, leach field, and sprinkler system. Place a potted plant, riser cover, or lawn decoration just above the site of your access hatch to identify it. When the time comes to dig it up, it will be much simpler to do so. Allow tall Kentucky bluegrass or another type of lawn to grow over the plot of ground that serves as a septic tank cover
- Consider the option of planting perennials. Because both grasses and perennials have a shallow root structure, they should not do any damage to your tank or drain field. Make use of tiny, non-woody groundcovers to hide weeds. Consider shallow-rooted plants and vegetation (such as cherry trees, dogwood trees, holly bushes, azalea shrubs, and boxwood shrubs) for areas near your septic system, but keep them at least 10-15 feet away from the tank.
Plants Safe to Grow Over Septic Tanks and Drain Fields
As long as you choose the landscaping for the region around your septic system with care, you won’t have to be so concerned about the possibility of septic system damage caused by roots that you refrain from planting in these places entirely. It is not only permissible, but really desirable, to cultivate the appropriate kind of plants in this location. Plants will help to prevent erosion and will also help to absorb some of the surplus rainwater from the drainage system. The ideal plants to use around your septic tank and drain field are perennials and grasses (including decorative grasses).
Small, non-woody ground coverings are a wonderful choice for the same reason: they are low maintenance.
It is not safe to consume food crops that have been planted in the ground near a drain field since doing so may result in the consumption of hazardous microorganisms.
The following are examples of shallow-rooted plants and shrubs:
- Dogwood trees, Japanese maple trees, Eastern redbud trees, cherry trees, azalea shrubs, boxwood shrubs, and holly shrubs are examples of ornamental trees and shrubs.
The Worst Plants to Grow Over Septic Systems
Flowering dogwoods, Japanese maples, Eastern redbuds, cherry blossoms, Azalea shrubs, Boxwood shrubs, and Holly shrubs are all examples of ornamental plants.
- The following are examples of plants and trees: Pussywillow bushes, Japanese willow shrubs, Weeping willow trees, Aspen trees, Lombardy poplar trees, Birch trees, Beech trees, and Elm trees The majority of maple trees, with the exception of Japanese maples
- American sweetgum trees
- Ash trees
- Tulip trees
The following are examples of plants and trees: Pussywillow bushes; Japanese willow shrubs; Weeping willow trees; Aspen trees; Lombardy poplar trees; Birch trees; Beech trees; Elm trees The majority of maple trees, with the exception of Japanese maples; American sweetgum trees; Ash trees; Tulip trees; and many more species
Safe Plants to Grow Over Septic Tanks & Drain Fields
When some trees and bushes are planted near septic tanks and drain fields, their vigorous roots can cause harm to the tanks and drain fields. Find out which plants are the most dangerous to cultivate near a septic system and which ones are the safest.
Plants Safe to Grow Over Septic Tanks and Drain Fields
Keep in mind that you should not become so concerned about the possibility of root damage to septic systems that you avoid planting in these places completely. It is not only permissible, but really desirable, to cultivate the appropriate kind of plants in this location. Plants will help to prevent erosion and will also help to absorb some of the surplus rainwater from the drainage system. Growing tall fescue grass, Kentucky bluegrass, or other lawn grass over that section of earth should be the bare minimum solution to the problem.
Plants such as creeping Charlie, stonecrop, and jewelweed will proliferate and cover a septic area effectively.
Because of their thin root systems, they are less prone to infiltrate and destroy the subsurface infrastructure.
A smart choice for ground coverings is tiny, non-woody ground covers for the same reason. It goes without saying that there are several instances of such plants, so you will want to limit down your options. Consider the following growth conditions as a good place to start:
- If the location is sunny, try planting one of these 10 great perennials for sunny locations: However, if the location does not receive much sunlight, you will most likely be pleased with these shadow garden plants. Septic tank drain fields have soil that is sometimes wetter than usual, sometimes saltier than average, and sometimes a combination of the two. Make sure to cover both bases with perennials that can withstand both damp soils and salt, such as bee balm, hollyhocks, and wild violets. When it comes to plants growing over septic systems, deer will not turn their noses up at them
- Therefore, if you have a problem with this large pest eating your plants in your area, you will want to consider deer-resistant perennials and deer-resistant ground covers, as well as spring bulbs and ornamental grasses that deer do not eat
It is not safe to consume food crops that have been planted in the ground near a drain field since doing so may result in the consumption of hazardous microorganisms. It is preferable to plant shallow-rooted trees and bushes around septic tank drain fields if you must plant trees and plants. The Spruce is an example of a shallow-rooted tree or shrub. K. Dave’s / K. Dave
The Worst Plants to Grow Over Septic Systems
The consumption of food crops grown in the soil near a drain field is not recommended due to the possibility of consuming potentially hazardous germs. It is preferable to plant shallow-rooted trees and bushes around septic tank drain fields if you must cultivate trees and shrubs. The following are examples of shallow-rooted plants and shrubs: K. Dave’s Contribution
The Basics of How Septic Systems Work
Septic systems are used to treat wastewater in rural regions that do not have access to sewer systems. An underground, waterproof container, the septic tank is where wastewater from your toilets, showers, sinks, and clothes washer is stored after it has been removed from your home via a pipe. Solids (sludge) and scum are separated from liquids in a septic tank, which is intended to do this. Solids sink to the bottom of the container. The slime rises to the top of the heap. The liquids create an intermediate layer between the scum and the sludge, separating them from the other two layers.
- The introduction of more wastewater from the residence serves as a stimulus for their expulsion.
- Upon discharge, liquids are channeled into a much bigger portion of the septic system known as the “drain field,” “leach field,” or “leach pit.” Typically, a drain field is composed of a number of perforated PVC pipes that are installed in subterranean trenches.
- Drain field cloth can be used to protect dirt from getting into the holes.
- “Percolation” is the term used to describe how wastewater moves through the earth.
- The evaporation of excess moisture from the soil will take care of any excess moisture unless you (inadvertently) do something to hinder it.
- The Spruce / written by K.
Planning a Septic Field Garden
Sewage treatment facilities (septic systems) are used in rural regions that do not have sewage lines. An underground, waterproof container, the septic tank is where wastewater from your toilets, showers, sinks, and clothes dryer is stored after it has been transported out of your home. Solids (sludge) and scum are separated from liquids in a septic tank, which is intended to do so. Solids are attracted to the bottom of the container. Everything starts from the bottom and works its way up. Between the scum and the sludge, a layer of liquids forms in the center.
- Increased wastewater from within the house acts as a trigger for their expulsion.
- Their discharge transports the liquids to a much bigger component of the septic system known as the “drain field” or “leach field,” depending on how they are constructed.
- Usually, crushed stone or gravel is used to fill the ditches.
- Water can escape the pipes through perforations in the crushed stone or gravel, and subsequently into the soil below, due to the perforations.
- The evaporation of excess moisture from the soil will take care of any excess moisture unless you (inadvertently) do something to prevent it.
You will have to hire a septic service to pump the sludge and scum out of your septic tank at some point (usually after approximately three years). David K. Dave’s The Spruce.
- Septic systems are used to handle wastewater in rural regions that do not have sewer systems. A pipe transports wastewater from your home’s toilets, showers, sinks, and clothes washer outside and into a septic tank, which is an underground, waterproof holding tank. Solids (sludge) and scum are separated from liquids by the construction of the septic tank. Solids sink to the bottom of the pool. The filth climbs to the top of the pile. The liquids form an intermediate layer between the scum and the sludge, separating them from one other. The liquids finally leave through a baffle pipe with a T-shape. The introduction of extra wastewater from the residence serves as a stimulus for their expulsion. The innovative baffle is constructed in such a way that only liquids may pass through the pipe. Their discharge transports the liquids to a much bigger component of the septic system known as the “drain field” or “leach field,” depending on how they are configured. Typically, a drain field is composed of a number of perforated PVC pipes that are put in subterranean trenches. Crushed stone or gravel is used to fill the trenches. Drain field fabric may be used to protect dirt from getting into the holes. Water can escape the pipes through perforations in the crushed stone or gravel, and then into the soil below. It is stated that the wastewater “percolates” through the earth. Prior to groundwater reaching its destination, this technique eliminates the majority of the potentially hazardous microorganisms present. Unless you (inadvertently) obstruct evaporation, any excess moisture in the soil will evaporate. You will have to hire a septic service to pump the sludge and scum out of your septic tank at some time (usually after three years). K. Dave’s The Spruce
Planting On Your Septic Systems, Landscaping Ideas for Your Drain Field
In the event that you want to plant over your septic drain field, When it comes to landscaping around a septic tank, there are a few plants you may use safely, and then there are the ones you should avoid. Is it possible to grow plants over your septic drain field? If so, which plants are the most beneficial and which are the most detrimental? We will discuss landscaping and gardening ideas for septic tank owners in this post, which is written in English and Spanish.
Landscaping and Planting Ideas for your Septic Drain FieldSeptic Tank
Water is a precious resource in most rural and regional parts of British Columbia, and access to a public sewer system can be difficult to come by in many of these locations. As a result, many households and businesses in British Columbia require a septic system in order to function properly – both to conserve water and because there are no other waste disposal choices available when outside of the city sewage system. If your family or business relies on a septic system to manage waste, you will be acutely aware of the financial outlay you have invested in the system’s purchase, installation, and ongoing maintenance.
- Because of this, it is critical to understand not just how your septic system works, but also how landscaping and planting can have an influence on the lifetime of your septic field.
- What is the operation of a septic drain field?
- The wastewater from your toilet, shower, kitchen sink, dishwasher, and washing machine runs to your septic system if your house or company does not have connection to a public sewer.
- So, how exactly does a septic system function?
- In your septic system, waste gradually separates, with liquids rising to the top and solid, inorganic waste (such as sand, synthetic fibers, and small pieces of plastic) settling to the bottom as sludge as time goes on.
- Tank sludge must be pumped out at regular intervals, often every few years, to guarantee that the septic system continues to work effectively and lasts for an extended period of time.
- The sewage system, as well as recycling This’soil absorption area’ is also referred to as a leach field or a septic drain field, depending on who you ask.
After a few preliminary phases, the ultimate treatment and distribution take place in this location.
(See Figure 1).
It is necessary for the effluent to drain at a sufficient rate in order for the organisms to operate efficiently.
Observations on Mound Systems In certain septic systems, such asAbove Ground Septic Systems or Sand Mound Septic Systems, the drain field is elevated above ground in an artificial mound, allowing for better drainage.
In regions where specific environmental factors (such as a high water table, shallow soil cover, and/or when the land drains too rapidly or too slowly) preclude the installation of a standard septic system, the system was created to address these issues.
Mound systems operate in much the same way as typical below-ground systems; however, the mound itself must be stabilized in order to prevent erosion and other disturbances that might cause damage to the drain field.
Septic Field Landscaping, is it necessary?
Access to public sewers is difficult to come by in most rural and regional parts of British Columbia, where water is a very valuable resource. As a result, many households and businesses in British Columbia require a septic system in order to function properly – both to conserve water and because there are no alternative waste disposal choices available when not connected to a municipal sewage system. If your family or business relies on a septic system to manage waste, you will be acutely aware of the financial outlay you have invested in the system’s purchase, installation, and ongoing maintenance and operation.
- Because of this, it is critical to understand not just how your septic system works, but also how landscaping and planting can have an influence on the lifetime of your septic system.
- A septic drain field is comprised of a number of interconnected pipes.
- Water from your toilet, shower, kitchen sink, dishwasher and washing machine goes to your septic system when your house or company does not have access to a public sewage system.
- Then, what exactly is the function of a septic system?
- In your septic system, waste gradually separates, with liquids rising to the top and solid, inorganic waste (such as sand, synthetic fibers, and small pieces of plastic) settling to the bottom as sludge.
- A planned pumping schedule, often every few years, is required to guarantee that the septic system continues to work effectively and lasts for an extended period of time.
- The sewage system and recycling are also important.
- After a few preliminary steps, the ultimate treatment and distribution take place in this location.
- Many diverse organisms and microorganisms in the soil filter and purify the treated wastewater before any pathogens that remain have a chance to reach the groundwater source.
- A large number of these creatures rely on oxygen to thrive, and soil that has been oversaturated with water will not have enough oxygen to support their populations.
The mound septic system, which was developed in the 1940s at the North Dakota College of Agriculture and was originally known as the “NODAK disposal system” after the place where it was developed, was a groundbreaking alternative to traditional underground septic systems and drain fields at the time.
Although mound systems work in much the same way as traditional below-ground systems, the mound itself must be stabilized in order to prevent erosion and other disturbances that might impair the drainage field.
So, what should you consider when planting on a septic drain field?
Water is a precious resource in most rural and regional areas of British Columbia, and access to a public sewer system is difficult to come by. This means that many households and companies in British Columbia require a septic system in order to function properly – both to conserve water and because there are no other waste disposal alternatives available when outside of the local sewage system. If your family or business relies on a septic system to manage waste, you will be acutely aware of the financial commitment you have made in the system’s purchase, installation, and ongoing maintenance.
- As a result, it is critical to understand not just how your septic system works, but also how landscaping and planting might affect the lifetime of your septic field.
- What is the function of a septic drain field?
- Water from your toilet, shower, kitchen sink, dishwasher and washing machine goes to your septic system when your house or company doesn’t have access to a public sewage system.
- So, how exactly does a septic system operate?
- In your septic system, waste gradually separates, with liquids rising to the top and solid, inorganic waste (such as sand, synthetic fibers, and fragments of plastic) settling to the bottom as sludge.
- Tank sludge must be pumped out at regular intervals, usually every few years, to ensure that the septic system continues to work effectively and lasts as long as possible.
- The sewage system and the recycling system This’soil absorption area’ is sometimes referred to as a leach field or a septic drain field, depending on how it is used.
- After a few preliminary steps, the ultimate treatment and distribution take place in this location.
- Many diverse organisms and bacteria in the soil filter and purify the treated wastewater before any lingering pathogens have a chance to reach the groundwater.
- A large number of these species rely on oxygen to thrive, and soil that has been oversaturated with water will not have enough oxygen to support their growth.
- The mound septic system, which was developed in the 1940s at the North Dakota College of Agriculture and was initially known as the “NODAK disposal system” after the location of its development, was a groundbreaking alternative to typical subterranean septic systems and drain fields.
Mound systems operate in a similar manner to standard below-ground systems; however, the mound itself must be stabilized in order to prevent erosion and other disturbances that might cause damage to the drain field.
Some of the plants that are safe for your drain field are:
- Holly shrubs, boxwood shrubs, azalea shrubs, Holly Hocks, wild violets, and spring bulbs are some of the options.
Some trees that are septic safe, including fruit trees, include:
- Holly shrubs, boxwood shrubs, azalea shrubs, hollyhocks, wild violets, and spring bulbs are some of the plants you’ll find in this arrangement.
When planting fruit trees near a drain field, extreme caution should be exercised, especially if there is a surface breakout from the septic system. Pathogens such as Escherichia coli and Enterobacter spp., which can be transferred from the septic drain field to the trees, have been identified. It is recommended by North Dakota University that a root barrier be erected, since this will prevent roots from entering into the septic lines. A typical rule of thumb, while not always applicable, is to maintain a distance between the septic system and the tree that is proportional to the height of the tree.
Some of the worst plants and trees to cover a septic drain field or septic tank are:
- When planting fruit trees near a drain field, extreme caution should be exercised, especially if there is a surface breakout from the septic system present. Pathogens such as Escherichia coli and Enterobacter spp., which can be transferred from the septic drain field to the trees, are a possibility. As recommended by North Dakota University, it is necessary to establish a root barrier. This will prevent roots from entering into the septic system. While this is not always the case, a basic rule of thumb is to maintain the septic system at a distance proportional to its height from the tree.
It is also not suggested to grow shrubs with extensive root systems, such as Caryopteris (also known as Bluebeard or blue mist spirea). Planting vegetation with a deep root structure, water-loving roots that will develop aggressively deep and perhaps block or harm the pipes in the septic drain field is something you should avoid. As previously stated, septic systems – especially the drain field – may be quite expensive to repair. Furthermore, a faulty system might get extremely clogged and can have a negative influence on the environment.
(For example, avoid planting immediately before a major rainstorm.) You want the plants to establish themselves fast in order to reduce the likelihood of soil erosion.
Irritating the drain field can cause the soil to become saturated to an unacceptably high degree, preventing the effluent from evaporating and, as a result, increasing the likelihood of groundwater pollution.
Maintaining septic drain field vegetation
As much as you may want to plant over the drain field so that it integrates smoothly with your landscape and you forget that it exists, this is not the ideal option in most cases. Maintain visibility of your drain field, or make people aware of it through other methods, such as a plant barrier or fence. Holding big social events is discouraged; mowing the grass is OK; however, foot traffic should be kept to a minimum. If you are unclear of any potential conditions that might have a detrimental impact on your system, always consult with your Septic System Installer.
This is OK, as long as they are at least 50 feet away from your septic system and drain field, which is recommended.
Keep these trees at least 20 feet away from the septic tank and drain field, or as far away as the mature height of the tree allows you to go.
Can I plant a vegetable garden over the Septic System?
Because of the wastewater that seeps into the soil through the drain field pipes, the soil can become extremely wet and nutrient rich. The thought of using this by planting a fruit or vegetable garden over a drain field may seem like a good idea at first glance. Unfortunately, this is not encouraged – especially when it comes to creeping plants and root crops like turnips. Due to the fact that the vegetation will be in close contact with soil that is likely to be contaminated with disease-causing organisms such as viruses and bacteria, this is the case.
- However, leafy crops that grow near to the ground are also at danger of contamination because irrigation water that has spilled onto the foliage might contaminate the foliage.
- In general, the higher the crop is in height, the smaller the chance of contamination is to be found.
- It is quite likely that if you have a water softener in your home, your water softening system is adding salt to your septic system every time it regenerates, which is harmful to your health.
- In addition, depending on your septic system, the wastewater that ends up in your drain field may still include residue from home chemicals such as laundry detergent, which can be harmful.
- Furthermore, gardening tasks such as ploughing, deep digging, rototilling, and fence post placement must be included in.
- Raised garden beds, on the other hand, can have a substantial impact on the usual evaporation rate of wastewater from the soil.
- Herbaceous plants such as annuals, perennials (including bulbs), and decorative grasses will be the best choices for your septic drain field.
- In a previous section, we discussed the advantages of shallow-rooted herbaceous plants over alternative deep-rooted and woody-rooted options.
- Because of the wastewater that seeps into the soil through the drain field pipes, the soil can become extremely wet and nutrient dense. The thought of using this by planting a fruit or vegetable garden over a drain field may appear to be a wonderful idea at first. Unfortunately, this is not encouraged — particularly when it comes to climbing plants and root crops like turnips. Due to the fact that the vegetation will come into direct contact with soil that is likely to be contaminated with disease-causing organisms such as viruses and bacteria, this is the case. It goes without saying that root vegetables such as carrots and potatoes are the most at risk of being contaminated with bacteria. Plants that grow near to the ground, such as leafy crops, are also at danger of contamination from irrigation water that has spilled over their leaves. It is hard to identify if leaves, fruits, or vegetables have been polluted based on their look alone. In general, the higher the crop is in height, the smaller the chance of contamination is for that crop. Other considerations, however, must be taken into account as well as the above. It is quite likely that if you have a water softener in your home, your water softening system is adding salt to your septic system every time it regenerates, which is a bad thing. Because of this, the wastewater that eventually makes its way to your drain field will be salty, and it may harm salt-sensitive plants such as beans and cucumbers. It’s also possible that the wastewater that ends up in your drain field contains residue from home chemicals such as laundry detergent, depending on the design of your septic system. When selecting what veggies or fruits to grow on your septic field, it’s crucial to think about the impact that this will have on them. Furthermore, gardening tasks such as ploughing, deep digging, rototilling, and fence post placement must be taken into consideration as well. The pipes beneath your drain field may be damaged as a result of any of these behaviors. Raised garden beds, on the other hand, have the potential to dramatically slow the typical evaporation rate of wastewater from soil. Briefly summarized, here are some recommendations for herbaceous plants. Herbaceous plants, such as annuals, perennials (including bulbs), and decorative grasses, will be the best choices for your septic drain field. Among the benefits of ornamental grasses is their fibrous root structure, which helps to keep the soil in place while also providing ground cover throughout the year. In a previous section, we discussed the advantages of shallow-rooted herbaceous plants over alternative deep-rooted and woody-rooted options in terms of soil drainage. Although growing shallow-rooted plants on a drain field is permissible, there are certain general considerations to bear in mind:
- Tilling the soil– If at all possible, avoid doing this. Please keep in mind that the pipe for your septic system drain field might be as near as 12 inches from the soil surface, and in some cases much closer.
- Gloves– When dealing with the soil from your drain field, it is essential that you wear gloves. A virus might be present in the water leaking from your septic system into the drain field, and if it came into touch with your skin, eyes, or mouth it could cause you to get extremely sick.
- Use of groundcovers– If you are selecting a groundcover for your drain field, such as a native grass or creeper, avoid using species that are known to form a thick, dense canopy over the drain field. In order for your septic system to work efficiently, the effluent in the drain field must be allowed to evaporate, which cannot occur if the ground cover is too thick.
- Native species– Select plants that are native to your area and have a high level of adaptability. It will be less necessary for you to fertilize or water the drain field area as a result.
- Make sure that there is no foot traffic on the septic drain field in order to limit the likelihood of damage occurring. Choose low-maintenance plants that don’t require a lot of attention or mowing
A selected listing of plants for use on septic drain fields
The following are some more suggestions for plants that do well in drain fields in British Columbia. This list is not exhaustive, so make sure to conduct more research to confirm that the plants you pick will survive in the circumstances that are typical of your region before purchasing them. Fescue, lawn, and ornamental grasses are examples of grasses. Meadow mixtures with wildflowers Groundcovers that are tolerant of the sun Kinnickinick heathers (Calluna) are a kind of heather (Arctostaphylos) Soapwort is a kind of plant that is used to make soap (Saponaria) Groundcovers for Providing Shade Bunchberry is a kind of berry (Cornus) Ferns that are indigenous to the area Mosses that are indigenous to the area Sweet Woodruff is a flowering plant that is native to the United States (Galium) Ginder in the wild (Asarum) Wintergreen (Gaultheria) is a plant that grows in the winter.
Do’s and Don’ts for Landscaping Around a Septic System
In addition, here are some other suggestions for plants that are effective in drain fields in British Columbia: If you want to make sure that the plants you pick will survive in the circumstances characteristic of your region, make sure to do more study on them after reading this list. Plants that grow as ornamental grasses include Fescue, Lawn, and Ornamental grass. Meadow combines with wildflowers Sun-loving groundcovers Kinnickinick heather (Calluna) is a carpet heather (Arctostaphylos) Soapwort is a kind of plant that is used to clean clothes and other items using soap (Saponaria) Terrain Covers for Protection from the Sun Strawberry (also known as bunchberry) and raspberry (also known as bunchberry) (Cornus) Ferns that grow naturally Mosses found in the wild Sweet Woodruff is a flowering plant that grows in the woods of the United States and Canada (Galium) Ginder (in its natural habitat) (Asarum) Gaultheria) is a kind of wintergreen.
Planting Do’s and Don’ts
- To grow over the section of ground that contains the septic tank, you can use tall fescue, Kentucky bluegrass, or any other lawn grass (including decorative grass). Consider the benefits of growing perennials. Plants such as grasses and perennials have shallow root systems that should not cause any damage to your tank or drain field. Plants such as wild violets, hollyhocks, and bee balm are just a few examples of perennials that may thrive in the vicinity of a septic system, which is frequently wetter and saltier than the rest of the lawn. If you have any trees or shrubs growing in your yard in the future, consider how their development may impede access to the septic tank lids, leach field, and sprinkler system. Think about allowing weeds to grow over that region if the only other alternative is to leave it unattended for a while.
- Get so concerned about plants and grasses hurting your septic tank that you completely demolish the surrounding region. Some grasses and plants (such as those indicated above) perform an excellent job of absorbing excess precipitation around the drain field, hence reducing the likelihood of drainage problems. Overwatering your lawn may encourage freshly planted plants to flourish more quickly. Overwatering can cause soil to contract over your leach field, which can cause your septic system to get clogged. Root vegetables can be grown in the vicinity of your system. If these nutrient-absorbing plants are planted too near together, they may cause problems with microorganisms.
Landscaping Do’s and Don’ts
- Take such extreme precautions to avoid destroying your septic tank that you completely demolish the surrounding landscape. Excess moisture around the drain field can be absorbed by some grasses and plants (as noted above), which can assist alleviate problems caused by overwatering
- In order for freshly planted vegetation to thrive as quickly as possible, you should overwater your grass. It is possible to overwater your leach field, causing it to get compacted and clogging up your septic system. In the region where your system is located, you may grow any root veggies that you choose. If these nutrient-absorbing plants are planted too close together, they may cause problems with germs.
- Install plastic sheeting or ponds to keep the water out. These characteristics obstruct effective drainage from the tank to the leach field. Overlook the septic tank or leach field and construct walkways and high-traffic routes
- Don’t forget that the placement of fencing and gates might have an impact on septic pumper truck access. The hoses on the truck are quite heavy, and we do not recommend that you use them to cross fences. The majority of pumpers like to have access within 50 feet of their vehicle.
These are some helpful hints to assist you avoid the most common mistakes that homeowners make during the planting season, which are listed above. If you stay away from deep-rooted plants and avoid compacting the soil over your tank or leach field, you should be able to maintain a beautiful lawn that does not cause septic problems. Additionally, consider placing a potted plant or lawn ornament over the lid of your tank to make it simpler for sewage pumping specialists to access your tank. When it comes time to pump it out, we’ll have an easier time finding it this way.
Growing Over Septic Tanks: Choosing Plants To Grow On A Septic System
Liz Baessler is the author of this piece. Septic drain fields are a challenging landscape design challenge. They frequently cover a big area of ground that would appear weird if it were left uncultivated. In the case of a property with a lot of shade, it can be the only sunny spot accessible to you. In a dry area, it can be the only place where there is any moisture. On the other hand, not everything that may grow on a septic drain field is considered safe. Continue reading to find out more about selecting plants that are compatible for septic systems.
Growing Over Septic Tanks
What is a septic drain field, and how does it work? Basically, it’s a more environmentally friendly alternative to sewer systems, which are typically found on rural estates. A septic tank is a device that separates solid waste from liquid waste. Liquid waste is transported underground through long, broad, perforated pipes that are buried deep into the ground. The wastewater is discharged gradually into the soil, where it is broken down and cleansed by bacteria before finally reaching the groundwater table and entering the water supply.
A positive reason to plant on a septic drain field is that it helps minimize soil erosion and lowers foot traffic, which can compress the soil and cause issues. It is critical, however, to select the appropriate plants for growing on a septic system.
Septic Field Plant Choices
Whether or whether it is safe to produce vegetables on a septic field is a matter of disagreement. Root vegetables should be avoided at all costs, and mulch should be laid down to prevent wastewater from splashing up on leaves and fruit throughout the growing season. Really, if you have another location where you can grow your veggies, it is preferable to do it there. Flowers and grasses are a better option than shrubs. Due to the fact that the perforated pipes are typically 6 inches (15 cm) below ground, plants that are suitable for septic systems have shallow roots.
If possible, consider plants that require little maintenance and don’t need to be divided every year – this will assist to decrease pedestrian traffic.
- Butterfly weed, Sedum, Lily of the Nile, Tulip, Daffodils, Hyacinth, Crocus, Foxglove, Black eyed Susan, Primrose, and more flowers
When planting on a septic drain field, restrict digging to a bare minimum and use gloves at all times to avoid contamination. This page was last updated on Learn more about Flower Garden Maintenance in General.
Things You Can (and Can’t) Put on Your Septic System’s Leach Field
Istockphoto.com Designed to break down organic waste from the residence, septic systems are capable of segregating waste into two types: liquids and solids. While the solid sludge that accumulates at the bottom of the tank must be pumped out at regular intervals, the wastewater can either be treated and reused as irrigation for crops or simply discharged into a septic field, which is typically comprised of perforated piping that is set in gravel trenches and buried about 1 to 2 feet below ground level.
To find out how to utilize a septic field without endangering or interfering with the septic system, continue reading this article!
YouCanPlant Vegetation That Benefits the System
However, contrary to common thought, it is really a good idea to include some types of plants in a septic field to help with the process of evapotranspiration and to decrease the adverse effects of erosion, which can leave the field vulnerable to damage. You can plant a variety of shallow-root plants in your septic field to help improve the aesthetic appeal of your property while also benefiting the health of your system. Some examples of shallow-root plants to consider planting include holly shrubs, boxwood shrubs, azalea shrubs, hollyhocks, violets, wild violets, and spring bulbs.
YouCan’tPlant Vegetation That Harms the System
While there are certain advantages to growing certain types of vegetation on your septic field, if you plant the wrong sort of vegetation, you may have difficulties. In addition to pussy willow bushes and Japanese willow shrubs, aspen trees and birch trees as well as blue mist spireas and edible vegetable plants are examples of vegetation that should not be planted on a septic field. Although a vegetable garden may appear to be beautiful, there is the possibility that hazardous bacteria, such as E.
Raised gardens are also not a smart idea since the additional weight of the soil and bed constructions can cause the septic pipes to become damaged or even collapse.
In certain cases, these root systems can wrap around septic field pipes, causing the septic effluent to be trapped and flooding the surrounding area.
Large tree roots, in particular, are well-known for their extensive root systems that are capable of breaking through rock, concrete, and even home foundations, so it should come as no surprise that these plants are capable of crushing septic system pipes.
YouCanInstall an Open-Air Kennel
However, if you have a dog and want to provide it with a safe place to play without worrying about it running away, you may build a basic open-air kennel on top of your sewage field, which will reduce the amount of weight that is placed on top of the septic field. Although it should be emphasized that the roof and any form of floor that would lie on top of the grass are not permitted since these modifications would obstruct the evapotranspiration process in the grass. The most basic definition of a suitable open-air dog kennel is a gated space where the dog may run about freely.
Aside from that, make certain that the fence posts are set away from the septic field pipes to avoid accidently damaging a pipe when digging a posthole for the fence.
Construction of structures around septic fields is not recommended and cannot be done in certain areas. As previously stated, Numerous individuals have suggested floating decks, tiny shelters, and even simple gazebos to help block out the sun; however, each of these modifications poses a risk to the septic system and should be avoided. Septic fields cannot be securely constructed over decks because they are too heavy; in addition, decks impede access to the system by inhibiting the establishment of grass and other useful flora, which helps to lessen the adverse effects of erosion.
It is not always true that a gazebo is too heavy for the field, but any building that shuts out the sun causes erosion in the field, which is why even an open-air kennel cannot be covered.
YouCanSet Up a Lightweight Swing Set
Some people may consider this large field to be a waste of space, but children and pets may play freely in it without encountering any difficulties, making it an ideal location for a lightweight swing set for the kids. Because of its tiny size and lightweight construction, this type of playground equipment is often reserved for children under the age of ten. These considerations also make it feasible to put up a swing set for some outside recreation time. Just make sure that the swing set does not have any large roofed portions that may obscure the sun and cause damage to the beneficial plants in the surrounding region before purchasing it.
YouCan’tInstall Semipermanent Playground Equipment
A permanent or semipermanent play structure may seem like an excellent idea given the amount of open space afforded by the septic field, but this might result in a slew of difficulties if it is not done properly. Large play structures are sometimes excessively heavy, placing strain on the septic field and potentially bending or breaking pipes that are only a foot or two below the surface of the ground. This type of play structure also normally requires a plastic sheet to assist prevent flooding and erosion surrounding the playground; however, when this barrier is placed over a septic field, it interferes with the process of evapotranspiration, which can result in both erosion and flooding in the field.
As with other playground materials, sand, gravel, and other playground materials can interfere with the correct working of the sewer field, thus even sandboxes can pose problems for the system. istockphoto.com
YouCanSet Up Volleyball and Badminton Courts
It is feasible to construct a couple of poles that can support a volleyball or badminton net without interfering with the septic system, however a regulation court with the required flooring is not recommended in this situation. Even though the grass should be left undisturbed and exposed to allow the current plants to help the septic field with evapotranspiration, a basic court may be created without causing any damage to the septic system by usingrope to create a temporary barrier around the area.
YouCan’tInstall Tennis or Basketball Courts
Tennis and basketball vary from volleyball and badminton in that they often require a paved surface in order to be played correctly. If you want to pave over your septic field for any purpose, whether to create a parking area, a patio, or to establish a tennis or basketball court, you should think twice. Because of the inclusion of concrete, not only does the process of evapotranspiration become impossible, but it also adds a large amount of weight to the septic field pipes, which may lead them to collapse.
YouCanBuild a Fence
The process of installing a fence in the yard becomes more difficult in the presence of an aseptic system because you must ensure that the postholes can be excavated and the posts installed without harming the septic field pipes is completed safely and without incident. When using an exact plan that specifies where the pipes are to be laid, it is feasible to construct an enclosed septic field, or even a pipeline that runs directly over it. Remember to take the time to carefully map out the exact location of the fence posts and to continue with caution while digging the holes for these supports.
Additionally, ensure that the system may still be accessed for maintenance when it is required to do so.
YouCan’tAdd a Pool or Water Features
Pools, ponds, and streams are all wonderful additions to a property, but they must be maintained away from septic fields to avoid contamination. The presence of ponds or streams that are too close to the septic field increases the possibility of them becoming wastewater runoff points, lowering the efficacy of the system and generating areas surrounding the residence where hazardous pollutants, such as E. coli, can concentrate. Due to the fact that they must be dug out and erected in the ground where the septic pipes are located, inground pools should be a no-brainer, but even above-ground pools can cause issues.
Non-stop evapotranspiration is prevented by the pool because it prevents oxygen from reaching the septic pipes. Additionally, the weight of the pool, especially when it is full, will likely crush the pipes and cause the entire septic system to backup.