Here are some example of trees and shrubs with shallow root systems that are safe to plant near your septic system:
- Japanese Maple Trees.
- Holly Shrubs.
- Dogwood Trees.
- Cherry Trees.
- Boxwood Shrubs.
- Eastern Redbud Trees.
- Azalea Shrubs.
Can you plant trees and shrubs near a septic tank?
- However, when it comes to planting trees and shrubs, you need to be a bit more careful. Here are some example of trees and shrubs with shallow root systems that are safe to plant near your septic system: Japanese Maple Trees. Holly Shrubs. Dogwood Trees. Cherry Trees. Boxwood Shrubs. Eastern Redbud Trees.
Can you plant a tree over a septic tank?
You definitely shouldn’t plant large shrubbery or trees anywhere near your septic tank. Any trees planted in your yard should be at least as far away from the septic tank as the tree is tall. For example, a 20-foot-tall tree should be planted at least 20 feet away from the septic tank.
Can tree roots damage a septic tank?
Trees can cause significant damage to a septic system. Over time, tree roots can wreak havoc on the pipes and drain lines that lead out to the sewer or to your privately installed septic system. As a result, the roots can grow into the walls of the pipes and block the ability to drain water and waste.
What can I plant on my septic field?
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.
How do you keep roots from growing into a septic tank?
Copper sulfate is effective at killing roots growing in drain fields and septic tanks. Not only does copper sulfate kill already existing roots, but it also discourages the growth of new roots and keeps growing roots out of septic systems.
Can you plant arborvitae near septic tank?
A common hedging plant for narrow spaces is pyramidal arborvitae (Thuja occidentalis ‘Fastigiata,’ or its greener cultivar ‘Emerald Green’). From my observation, it forms a dense root mass that would run into the septic field unless contained, but could provide a decent screen with a confined root run.
Can I plant a palm tree near my septic tank?
Only a few trees are considered safe for septic systems, and they are deep-rooted trees like cherry, crabapple, dogwood, oak, olive, palm trees and pine trees.
How far should garden be from septic tank?
While there are no specific distance mandates on vegetable gardens and septic fields, staying 10 to 20 feet outside the perimeter of your septic system’s drainage field is a safe bet for clean veggies and an effective septic system.
Can you plant crepe myrtle near septic?
A: Septic tanks and their pipes are not constructed to keep tree roots out. If you plant a shrub or tree near enough, eventually the roots will plug a line and cause problems. For trees like you are contemplating, plant them no closer than fifteen feet from the tank or to a drain field supply line.
Can you plant trees over a drain field?
Placing trees or shrubs over or near the leach field is risky. Woody plants have deeper roots that may clog drain pipes in relatively short order. Water-loving species are especially chancy and should be avoided, such as willow, poplar, elm, red and silver maple, birch and beech.
Can you plant a garden on top of a septic field?
The most important reason you should not install a vegetable garden on top of, or right next to, a septic system disposal field is because the plants can become contaminated by wastewater that has not yet been renovated by the field. Plants on disposal fields can absorb wastewater pathogens.
What can you put over a septic tank?
Put plastic sheets, bark, gravel or other fill over the drainfield. Reshape or fill the ground surface over the drainfield and reserve area. However, just adding topsoil is generally OK if it isn’t more than a couple of inches. Make ponds on or near the septic system and the reserve area.
What kills tree roots in a septic system?
Flush 2 pounds of granular copper sulfate down the toilet for every 300 gallons of water that the septic tank holds. Copper sulfate kills and dissolves tree roots as they absorb the tank’s water. After entering a tank, the majority of copper sulfate settles in tank, and little passes into the leach bed line.
What dissolves tree roots in sewer lines?
Copper Sulfate This bright blue salt-like crystal is available in most home improvement stores. Copper sulfate is a natural herbicide and will kill off the small tree roots invading your sewer pipes. Flushing half a cup of the crystals down the toilet should do the trick.
What Trees Are Safe to Plant Near a Septic Tank?
Landscaping Ideas Around Septic Tanks: What to Plant Over a Septic Tank
Regardless of what you’ve heard, it’s not impossible that this will happen! It is true that the correct type of plant or tree may assist the system in keeping water flowing smoothly and preventing erosion. Plants that function best have soft, green stems and are well-adapted to the amount of rain that falls in your location. In other words, we’re talking about annual plants versus perennial plants against wildflowers versus bulbs versus grass. Trees may also be used, as long as you select one with shallow roots and place it a long distance away from the tank.
Can I plant oak trees, Japanese maples or fruit trees near a septic tank?
It is possible, but it is really difficult! The roots of trees are wired to follow the flow of water. As a result, if you plant trees or bushes too close to your irrigation system, they may pry into the pipes and block them, causing harm to the system and the water flow in your home. When it comes to landscaping near the tank, the plants we described above are typically a better choice. In fact, you may cover the system with flowers like those (or even grass) to disguise the system’s presence.
Thus, white oaks and crabapples are both good choices for landscaping.
Maple trees are infamous for blocking drains and sewer lines.
Biological or viral contamination of any plants grown in close proximity to your sewage tank may be a concern.
What trees are safe to plant near a septic system?
Getting back to the original reader who sparked this discussion: because of their shallow roots, skyrocket junipers may be planted in a variety of locations. However, there is a caveat to this, as well as to all of the other options listed below. If possible, place the tree as far away from the system as the tree will be when it is completely matured.
Consequently, while skyrocket junipers normally grow to be 20 feet tall, it is recommended that they be planted at least 20 feet away from the system. The following are some more plants and shrubs to consider planting near a sewage treatment system:
- In zones 3-8, hemlock grows to be a beautiful evergreen that may reach heights of up to 80 feet. (Zones 3-8): An evergreen with wonderfully colored needles that may grow to be 80 feet tall
- It can be found in zones 3-8. Boxwood shrub (zones 4-9): An evergreen that is commonly used for hedges and grows to be around 10 feet tall
- It is a good choice for small gardens. Dogwood (hardiness zones 5-8): A spring-flowering tree that normally develops to be around 30 feet tall
- It blooms in the spring. Stunning blooming trees that grow between 30 and 50 feet tall in zones 5-8, ornamental cherries are a must-have for any garden. An added bonus is that there are several kinds and cultivars to pick from. In zones 5-9. American holly (Acer rubrum): An evergreen with vivid flashes of berries that often grows to reach around 50 feet tall
- It is a multi-stemmed palm that develops to be around 6 feet tall in zones 5b-11. The lady palm (zones 8-11) is a distinctive palm that may be grown to seem like a shrub and can grow to be around 10 feet tall. The pygmy date palm (zones 9-11) is a pint-sized palm that grows to approximately 12 feet tall and is extremely easy to grow.
Want a local arborist to plant your tree to keep your septic system safe? Start here.
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.
It goes without saying that there are several instances of such plants, so you will want to limit down your options.
- 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
Take a look at these 10 finest perennials for sunlit locations if you have a sunny location. You will, however, be pleased with these shade garden plants if your location does not receive much sunlight. Septic tank drain fields have soil that is occasionally wetter than usual, occasionally saltier than average, and occasionally both. Make sure to cover both bases with perennials that can withstand both damp soils and salt, such as bee balm, hollyhocks, or 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 will not eat;
The Worst Plants to Grow Over Septic Systems
Planting huge, fast-growing trees is often discouraged. However, some of the greatest offenders are trees and shrubs with root systems that are aggressively seeking out sources of water, which makes them particularly difficult to control. They are not picky about the water source from which they draw their water, which means the pipes in your septic tank drain field are completely fair game. Weeping willow trees are a well-known example of this. There are several trees and bushes to avoid, however the following are only a few examples: If you have avoided planting any of the most dangerous plants right over your septic tank drain field, you should still be concerned about the consequences.
Any huge, mature trees that may be growing in close proximity to your septic system continue to pose a threat.
As a result, a mature specimen 50 feet tall should be at least 50 feet distant from the viewer.
In the event that this is not practicable, root barriers can be installed to try to prevent tree roots from accessing your septic drain field (similar to the bamboo barriers used incontrolling invasive bamboo). The Spruce Tree K. Dave’s / K. Dave
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.
- Increasing the amount of soil in the region Using excessive amounts of mulch
- Providing more water to the plants than is strictly necessary
Planting Trees With Shallow Roots Over Septic Systems
Increasing the amount of soil available; Excessive use of mulching exceeding the very minimum watering requirements for the plants
- Salvia perennialis, Montauk Daisy, Delphiniums, Coneflower, Red Hot Poker, and Bearded Iris are some of the flowers that grow in the garden.
Salvia perennialis, Montauk Daisy, Delphiniums, Coneflower, Red Hot Poker, and Bearded Iris are some of the plants that grow in the garden.
- The Lenten Rose, the Bleeding Heart, the Bunchberry, the Hosta, the Leopard Plant, and the Jacob’s Ladder are all beautiful flowers.
The following plants and trees have shallow roots and may be planted atop sewage tanks, despite the fact that it is a bit riskier than planting ground covering grasses or perennials: The Japanese Maple Tree is a beautiful tree.
- The following plants and trees have shallow roots and may be planted over sewage tanks, despite the fact that it is a bit riskier than planting ground covering grasses or perennials. Maple Tree (Japanese)
Important to note is that while you may believe that growing vegetation you want to eat near or above your sewage system is a good idea (since it will grow quicker), it is not always safe to consume fruit or vegetables that have been grown over or near a septic system. There are also several trees you should avoid planting over or near your septic system (usually, trees should be placed at least 50 feet away from subsurface drainage/systems), including the following: The Elm Tree
- Japanese Willow Shrubs, Aspen Trees, Birch Trees, Beech Trees, Elm Trees, most Maple Trees, Ash Trees, and American Sweetgum Trees are some of the trees that grow in the area.
A huge tree’s aggressive roots may wreak havoc on the structures around it, including your home’s foundation, your driveway, your decks, and any subsurface drains or pipes on your property. It is critical to consider the location of trees in respect to these crucial structures in order to avoid costly damages. In the event that you are acquiring a new house, it is critical to have trees surrounding the property assessed for a variety of reasons, including their placement in proximity to key systems such as your septic tank.
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Trees With Roots That Will Infiltrate Your Septic Tank
A septic system is made up of three parts: a main exit, a holding tank, and a drainage area, often known as a leach bed or leach field. The tank takes sewage from the building’s plumbing system, where it accumulates over a period of time until it is full enough to be discharged through an outlet onto the drainage field below. While the tank itself is typically resilient to tree root damage, the roots of some kinds of trees can represent a major danger to the proper functioning of the leach field, particularly in areas where the tank is located.
However, while contractors and arborists generally feel that it is unsafe to plant any tree too close to a septic system, several species have been identified as being particularly undesirable. Among the most hazardous trees to septic tanks and sewer systems are elms (Ulmus sp.), gum trees (Eucalyptus sp.), cypress trees (Cupressus), maple trees, particularly silver maple (Acer saccharinium), birches (Betula sp.), walnut trees (Juglans), poplars (Populus sp.), and willows (Salix sp. Apart from seeking for the nearest and most abundant supply of water, the roots of these trees are also drawn to the vast stores of nutrients present in the soil around a septic system, as well as the oxygen found in the drainage lines.
Planting species such as weeping willows, Monterey pines, and walnut trees at least 100 feet away from the system may prevent them from becoming a problem.
Tree Root Facts
The root system of any tree is responsible for the majority of the tree’s water and nutrient absorption from the soil. Not all tree roots develop in the same manner, and the manner in which they do so is influenced by a variety of variables, including the kind of tree, the environment in which it grows, the quantity of yearly rainfall received, and the availability of water. In order to find the most plentiful supply of water, tree roots naturally seek for the nearest and most abundant source of water.
Septic System Facts
Modern septic systems are likely to have little more than 2 feet of soil cover, which makes trees with extremely deep taproot systems, such as oaks (Quercus sp. ), less of a hazard because their main roots naturally travel in a fairly vertical direction straight down into the soil. One element that leads to the invasion of tree roots into drainage systems is the presence of numerous holes in the pipes used to build leach fields, which allow any form of root to gain access with relative ease. It doesn’t take long for the strain from spreading roots to build up to the point when the pipes shatter and split open, which is usually constructed of PVC plastic.
Finally, as the obstruction increases, sewage begins to back up into the tank, and eventually the tank itself ceases to drain at all.
Safe Tree List
Generally speaking, the larger the tree, the more complicated its root system will be, and the reverse is true as well. Certain smaller types of trees, such as the Japanese maple (Acer palmatum) and the Amur maple (Acer ginnala), may not represent a significant hazard to a septic system. These are two of numerous trees that grow to no more than 25 feet in height, and they include the Japanese maple and the Amur maple. The University of Tennessee Extension also offers flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) as an excellent alternative, as well as smoke tree (Cotinus spp.) and Eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis), which are both low-growing species with limited root systems, according to the university.
It is normal for the roots of any type of plant to seek out and take advantage of the rich environment provided by the system when certain unanticipated situations exist.
Worst Trees for Septic Systems
It is generally accepted that the bigger a tree is, the more complex its root system will be. The Japanese maple (Acer palmatum) and the Amur maple (Acer ginnala), two of numerous tree kinds that grow to no more than 25 feet in height, are examples of trees that may not represent a significant hazard to a septic system. The University of Tennessee Extension also offers flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) as an excellent alternative, as well as smoke tree (Cotinus spp.) and Eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis), which are both low-growing species with moderate root systems, according to the Extension.
Under certain unforeseen situations, the roots of any species of plant may and will seek out the nutrient-dense environment that the system provides, simply because this is what plant roots are designed to do in their natural habitat.
These are the worst trees for your home’s septic system:
As soon as a tree root reaches the surface of your septic tank, it begins to collect nutrients from the water contained within the tank. It is as a result of this that the root will also absorb chemicals from the water. Apart from the possibility of thousands of dollars in repairs, the tree may also begin bearing fruit that is dangerous to consume as a result of the damage.
Willow trees grow to be quite large and spread out. As a result, they require a substantial root system. They are well-known for spreading their roots far and wide in quest of moisture. For many septic tanks, the soil is just two feet deep, which is nothing in comparison to the depth of the roots of a Willow. Its roots have the potential to readily penetrate and destroy your septic tank.
Willow trees are large and tall, with a broad spread of branches and branches spread. This necessitates the establishment of a substantial root system. When in quest of moisture, their roots have been known to grow far and wide. For many septic tanks, the soil is just two feet deep, which is nothing in comparison to the depth of the roots of a Willow tree’s roots. Septic tank damage can be caused by its roots breaking into the tank.
In addition to the fact that they would aggressively grab for water sources such as willows, maple trees also generate a substance known as maple syrup, which works against them. When the roots of a Maple tree intrude into your septic system, you are confronted with not only the damage to your tank, but also an inedible batch of Maple Syrup for the upcoming fall season.
Despite the fact that they have a shallow yet powerful root system, eucalyptus trees may reach distances of up to 100 feet. The root system of the trees is intended to keep them alive in adverse conditions—and it even resprouts from these invasive roots when the trees are cut down and replanted. It should come as no surprise that the roots might make their way into water pipelines and septic tanks.
Honey locust trees rely on a strong root system to support a top structure that is similarly strong. Suckers from honey locust trees, like those from many other species with invasive roots, grow freely from their roots, sending up prospective new trees that must be dealt with. Those roots can potentially cause issues with subterranean pipelines if they grow too close together.
Mulberry trees grow quite quickly, both in terms of sprouting and in terms of reaching maturity. Their success will be dependent on their ability to maintain a robust root system that will travel wherever the promise of moisture takes them—including ancient subterranean pipelines with leaky seams.
Aspen prefers to grow in thickets, which may provide a pleasing grove-like appearance. The thickets form from the root system of a single tree, which means that a single aspen tree may grow into a grove of similar trees stretching 100 yards over the landscape.
Although that free-roaming root structure is ideal for vacant areas, its performance near subterranean pipes in residential landscaping is less than optimal.
Empress trees are extremely fast growers, taking on 5 feet or more of growth each year on average. The tropical appearance of the large leaves, as well as the bright purple summer blossoms, have made the tree popular with certain people. Others, on the other hand, believe it to be a weedy pest. It has a very active root system, as do many weedy pests, and its roots can cause problems for subterranean utilities and pipelines.
Elm trees are drought tolerant and can survive in arid circumstances. They will, however, readily expand their roots in the direction of leaking old pipes if left alone. They can deal with drought, although they would prefer to have their fair amount of precipitation. When it comes to leaking underground drain pipes, that intense desire may be a dangerous trap.
Consider Planting These Trees Instead
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. The ideal plants to use around your septic tank and drain field are perennials and grasses (including decorative grasses). Because of their thin root systems, they are less prone to infiltrate and destroy the subsurface infrastructure. Small, non-woody ground coverings are a wonderful choice for the same reason: they are low maintenance.
It is important to remember that eating food crops grown on the ground around a drain field is not recommended since doing so may result in the consumption of hazardous microorganisms.
The following are examples of shallow-rooted plants and shrubs:
- Dogwood trees are a kind of tree that grows throughout North America. Japanese maple trees are a popular choice. Redbud trees in the eastern United States
- Azalea bushes are a popular choice. Boxwood shrubs are a kind of evergreen. Holly bushes
- Holly trees
Call West Coast Sanitation Today!
The most important piece of advise we can provide you is to keep trees and bushes out of the landscaping surrounding your septic system. The most important factor should be the best possible functioning of your septic system, but each homeowner will need to do a cost/benefit analysis of the plants they choose on an individual basis. We at West Coast Sanitation understand that you are busy and do not have time to deal with septic issues. If you suspect that encroaching tree roots are causing damage to your system, please contact us at (951) 780-5922 as soon as possible.
6 Things to Know About Landscaping Around Your Septic Tank
You’re undoubtedly already aware that dumping some items into your sewage system, such as paint or grease, can cause harm to your septic tank. However, you may not be aware that certain gardening methods can actually cause harm to your septic system. In order to avoid unwittingly causing difficulties or damage to your septic tank, here are six things you should know regarding landscaping around your septic tank. 1. The location of the access point. It is OK to use landscaping to conceal the entry port to your septic tank; however, you must not totally conceal it.
- One option to conceal your access port without totally concealing it is to use a landscaping element such as a birdbath or any other fixed lawn decoration to mark out its position on the property.
- Characteristics of Vegetation that is Safe It is possible for some species of vegetation to grow above and around a septic tank without the risk of septic tank damage rising.
- You should also limit the vegetation that grows above your tank to plants that do not require a lot of water.
- In order to grow anything other than grass over your sewage tank, use perennials that are drought-resistant to the elements.
- Characteristics of Trees that Have the Potential to Be Destructive Large bushes or trees should not be planted anywhere near your septic tank under any circumstances.
- In the case of a 20-foot-tall tree, it is recommended that it be placed at least 20 feet away from the septic tank.
- Trees with actively growing roots can cause damage to septic tanks and pipelines, even if they are located a long distance away.
Grazing animals consume the protective vegetation that covers your drain field, exposing the components of your septic system to the elements.
There are a lot of methods you may use to keep livestock from grazing on your septic tank.
You may also apply animal repellents around your drain field, which deter animals by emitting unpleasant sounds or odors that they find uncomfortable.
Preventing vehicular and pedestrian traffic.
Your landscaping should be planned and your yard should be put out in such a way that cars do not drive over the area where your septic tank is positioned.
Foot traffic, in addition to car traffic, can cause damage to a septic tank.
As an alternative, if possible, direct foot traffic away from the area.
The Positioning of Architectural Elements You could choose to include architectural elements into your landscaping, such as retaining walls, stone paths, or fire pits.
If you plan to incorporate architectural elements into your landscaping, be certain that these elements are located far away from your septic tank. Get in contact with Walters Environmental Services if you want to learn more about maintaining your septic tank in excellent working order.
Trees and Your Septic System – Septic Maxx
In virtually all circumstances, the best advise is to avoid planting any trees in close proximity to your septic tank or drainfield. Sewage system difficulties can be caused by trees growing close to a septic system because the roots can infiltrate the system, break through the septic tank, and grow beneath the drainfield. In the worst-case situation, a tree that has broken through a septic tank might result in thousands of dollars in repair costs for the property owners. In addition, planting trees that grow fruit or are otherwise edible near a septic system is nearly always a bad idea since the tree’s roots may absorb part of the sewage that is being discharged.
However, there are certain trees that, in some rare instances, may be safe to plant near a septic system due to the species’ very shallow root structure.
Trees You Should Never Plant Near a Septic System
- Elm trees, walnut trees, and any other tree that produces fruit are all good choices. Any vegetable or anything that is edible
- Maples, cypresses, and gum trees are examples of such trees. Any tree species that has been shown to have a large root system
Trees That Are Somewhat Safe to Plant
- Elm trees, walnut trees, and any other fruit-bearing tree are all good choices for landscape plantings. vegetables or anything that may be eaten in general Maples, cypresses, and gum trees are among the trees that grow in this area. There are a variety of tree species that are noted for having a large root system.
If you do not plant any trees near your septic system, certain trees can have subterranean root systems that are more than 100 feet in length. In these instances, the trees may eventually become a nuisance since they will gradually grow closer to your septic system. Before you plant any trees, make sure your soil is properly prepared. This will assist to reduce the likelihood of this happening in the first place. Prepare the planting bed by digging a deep hole and adding plenty of compost and peat moss.
The best approach, albeit the most expensive, is to install a root barrier around the perimeter of the property.
It is important to note, however, that even root barriers cannot ensure that your septic system will be completely secure.
We recommend that you test one of our Septic MAXXseptic system cleaning solutions before spending thousands of dollars to relocate a tree away from your septic system because you suspect that it may be the source of your septic system troubles.
Landscaping Your Septic System – Septic Maxx
Your septic system is a complicated underground network of sturdy boxes and pipes that manages the wastewater generated by your residence. When you flush your toilets, shower, or wash your dishes in the kitchen sink, the water travels a long distance before being organically cleansed by the bacteria that resides in your septic tank. Initially, the water is sent to the septic tank, where it is purified by a lengthy process in which microorganisms naturally breakdown the waste materials contained in the water.
When the clean effluent reaches the leach field or drain field, it is considered to be a success.
Flowing effluent (clarified water) into this area allows for the last treatment process to be completed.
It’s not difficult to understand why it’s critical to avoid planting giant trees in close proximity to the pipe system, since the roots might cause major harm to the sensitive system. This does not imply that you must have a simple yard; rather, you must ensure that the drain field is protected.
Safe Plants for Your Septic System
The region around your septic system is really fairly conducive to plant growth; the challenge is figuring out which plants to put in place in that location. Above-ground plant life benefits from the additional moisture and nutrients provided by underground septic systems. Make careful to choose plants with shallow roots that will not interfere with the septic system as they develop. The presence of roots is a septic system’s greatest nightmare.
Perennials such as wildflowers and tiny decorative grasses are excellent choices for landscaping around sewage tanks. Perennials are flowers that live for more than two years and are classified as such. It is also used to distinguish between perennial flowers and non-woody plants and trees and shrubs, which are technically perennials as well because they may survive for a long period of time without dying. The natural world has many different types of herbs, fruits, and vegetables that are perennial, yet there is still dispute about whether it is safe or sensible to cultivate food plants over a septic drain field.
In order to properly plant trees and bushes around your drain field, think about what the tree will look like when it is fully matured and then add 20 feet to that height. This is the distance at which it should be kept away from the drain field. Branches and bushes have roots that can cause havoc on the perforated pipes in the drain field, resulting in thousands of dollars in damage and subsequent repair costs. It is believed that just a few trees are safe for septic systems, and these include deep-rooted plants such as cherry, crabapple and dogwood trees as well as oak, olive, palm and pine tree species.
Even if you have a variety of plants growing around your septic system, you’ll need to make regular inspections to ensure that everything is working well.
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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 can 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?
In an ideal situation, you would choose plants that would fulfill your house or business landscaping needs while also maintaining the drain field as free of deep-rooted vegetative or weather risks as feasible. Finding out about a plant’s rooting tendencies and water requirements is the most straightforward approach to determine whether or not it is suitable for a drain field. Look for shallow-rootedherbaceous plants that are already established in your location or that have been acclimated to the average rainfall quantities in your region.
Choosing flora that is both shallow-rooted and drought-tolerant will help you to decrease your effort to a bare minimum totally.
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:
- Dogwood trees, Japanese maple trees, Eastern Redbud trees, and cherry trees are examples of such trees.
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:
- Pussy Willow Shrubs, Japanese Willow Shrubs, Aspen Trees, Lombardy Poplar Trees, Birch Trees, Elm Trees, Maple Trees (other than Maple Trees), American Sweet Gum Trees, Ash Trees, Tulip Trees, Walnut Trees, Willow Trees, Cypress Trees, and Pine Trees are some of the plants that grow in this area.
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 instance, don’t plant immediately before heavy rain).
While it may be required to irrigate freshly established vegetation until the roots of the plants have established themselves in the soil, long-term irrigation or fertilization is not suggested.
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.
- Covering the drain field with more dirt unless the amount is insignificant or the material is being used to repair an area that has been eroded or dragged up by the removal of another plant should be avoided.
- 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.
What to plant near septic system? – Novice needs HELP! – Toronto Master Gardeners
(Question) I recently purchased a lakeside home in the vicinity of Kingston. The vista is breathtaking, and the tranquility is much needed. However, I am originally from Toronto and have never even attempted to mow a lawn before. I now have a mower and am doing a better job of maintaining it, but I also have a massive hill over a septic tank and a couple of bogs near drainage pipes to contend with as well. Everyone wants to assist. yet they all have different ideas about what they can do.
- And, on the hill, I’d want to plant wildflowers, but which ones should I choose, and how can I assure that the flowers outcompete the grass that is now growing there?
- I’m not sure where to begin with my gardening endeavors.
- (Answer)Congratulations on your major relocation!
- In general, your septic system may be thought of as a little wastewater treatment facility.
- The effluent is gently drained and evaporated from the tank through a network of perforated distribution pipes that are often installed in gravel pits (this is the septic field or leaching bed).
- Because these pipes must be buried at a specific depth below the surface in order to operate correctly, it is critical not to pile up too much earth on top of the drainage field.
- If you have marshy regions around the pipes, you may want to consult with a professional to ensure that the septic system is operating correctly, as described above.
Depending on your municipality or regional district, you may have to request it.
Plants with shallow roots, such as grasses and flowers, are the most successful to grow.
Also, avoid heavy mulching and watering the plants more than is absolutely required – all of which might interfere with the field’s ability to operate.
Lawn mixtures might differ in terms of what exactly is contained within them.
It’s a fantastic alternative to traditional lawn care.
These mixtures are referred known as ‘Envirolawns’ in certain quarters.
Within a few years, many trees grow woody roots that are more prone to clog and damage the pipes that they are attached to.
Water-seeking trees such as willows and poplars, as well as other trees with vigorous water-seeking roots, should be placed at least 15 metres (50 feet) away from the leach field. Cedars are also not suggested for use. Avoid the following items as well when working in the septic system:
- (Question) Recent relocation brought me closer to Kingston, where I bought a lakeside home. There’s nothing like it in the world, and the tranquility is greatly needed. Nevertheless, I am originally from Toronto and have never even attempted to mow a lawn in my whole life. The lawn is now more or less in order, but there is a massive slope over a septic tank and many wetlands near drainage pipes that I have to do with. While everyone is eager to assist, their explanations are often conflicting. Planting cedars in swamps is suggested as a way to absorb water
- Some recommend willows
- And yet others advise that trees should not be planted because the roots will damage the Septic system. Likewise, I’d want to plant wildflowers on the hillside, but which ones should I choose, and how can I assure that the flowers outcompete the grass that’s now growing there? ADVICE IS NEEDED FOR THIS BEGINNER. In terms of gardening, I’m not sure where to start. Can you recommend a gardening/landscaping handbook for people who have never done it before? Congratulation on your major relocation! (Answer) I began by reviewing the basic operation of a septic system in order to better comprehend the difficulties you are experiencing when gardening on or near one of these facilities. As far as septic systems are concerned, they are essentially mini-wastewater treatment plants. It is made up of the pipes that drain wastewater from your home into an underground septic tank, which collects solid waste while allowing liquids to drain into a septic field below the earth. Water is gently drained and evaporated from the tank through a network of perforated distribution pipes that are often laid in gravel pits (this is the septic field or leaching bed). As the fluid effluent seeps into the ground, it is cleansed by the organic matter in the soil. Because these pipes must be buried at a specific depth below the surface in order to operate effectively, it is critical not to add too much soil to the surface of the drainage field. Also important is the prevention of plant roots from damaging the leaching bed. Having marshy regions near the pipes may need the hiring of a professional to ensure that the septic system is operating correctly. I also advise you to obtain a copy of the design that specifies the exact position and size of your septic system, if you have not previously done so. Some municipalities and regional districts may require you to request this information from them. In order to understand the perimeter of your septic system, you should mark it out. Plants with shallow roots, such as grasses and flowers, are the most successful in terms of cultivation. Do not rototill or dig deeply into the soil of the septic field while planting, and avoid heavy mulching and watering the plants more than is absolutely required – all of which might interfere with the field’s ability to perform its intended purpose. In order to minimize disruption to the septic field from gardening, perennial flowers or ground coverings, as well as grasses, are the ideal plants to use. In terms of what exactly is contained in a lawn mix, there are many different variations. To begin, you may use a mixture of hard fescue, perennial ryegrass, clover, yarrow, and violets to overseed your lawn. When compared to conventional lawn, it is a fantastic option. Pollinating insects will benefit from its being allowed to grow ‘wild’. Envirolawns are a type of mix that is sometimes used in lawn care. Please see also the following link to an old question from this forum, which will give you a very excellent idea of perennials to consider: The planting distance between fruits and vegetables and a septic system should not be less than three metres (ten feet). Many trees have woody roots that are more likely than not to clog and damage the pipes within a few years after being planted. Trees such as willow and poplar trees, as well as other trees with strong water-seeking roots, should be placed at least 15 metres (50 feet) away from the leach field to avoid contamination. The use of cedars is likewise discouraged. Avoid the following items as well when working around the septic system:
According to experts, planting any type of tree too close to a septic system is not a good idea. If you wish to plant trees near the septic tank, make sure to place them as far away from the outside perimeter of the leaching bed as feasible. Planting distances may be calculated by taking into account the height of the mature tree – for example, a tree that grows to be 25 feet (8 metres) tall at maturity should be planted at least that distance from the edge of the bed, according to this guideline.
Here are a few illustrations:
- Dogwood, Japanese maple, Eastern redbud, and cherry trees (but not the edible kind!) are examples of trees. Azaleas, boxwood, and holly are examples of shrubs.
Planting in the marshy region you specify should be done with caution, since trees, bushes, and other plants may suffer from root rot if the drainage is poor or the area remains wet for long periods of time. Please visit the following websites for further information and reading:
- Planting in the marshy region you specify should be done with caution, since trees, bushes, and other plants may suffer from root rot if the drainage is poor or the area remains damp. You may find further information and reading material on the following web sites:
Think about talking to some of your neighbours, who presumably had the same questions as you had when they first moved in and may have discovered some plants that function well in the septic system. Additionally, your municipality may provide you with useful resources and experts that you can consult. Discuss the finest plants for on and near septic systems with someone at your local nursery; you won’t be the first person to inquire about this! Regarding your request for a “idiot’s handbook” to rural gardening, you are off to a good start by researching what can and cannot be grown in and around the septic bed.
Always remember to research the soil, water, and sunshine needs of any plants you are contemplating growing.
Landscape Ontario offers a fantastic website that will assist you in locating professionals in your region.