What Should I Plant Over Septic Tank? (Solved)

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 fieldseptic drain fieldThe drain field typically consists of an arrangement of trenches containing perforated pipes and porous material (often gravel) covered by a layer of soil to prevent animals (and surface runoff) from reaching the wastewater distributed within those trenches.https://en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Septic_drain_field

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.

Can you plant on top of a septic tank?

Plants Safe to Grow Over Septic Tanks and Drain Fields Perennials and grasses (including ornamental grasses) work best around your septic tank and drain field. Their shallow root systems are less likely to invade the underground system and cause it damage.

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 plants are safe to plant near septic systems?

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.

How do you cover a septic tank in the garden?

The Do’s For Hiding Your Septic Tank

  1. Plant tall native grasses with fibrous roots around the opening to conceal the tank lid from view.
  2. Place a light statue, bird bath or potted plant over the septic lid.
  3. Septic tank risers and covers are an alternative to concrete and blend into green grass.

Why doesn’t grass grow over my septic tank?

Lawn grass species prefer moist, high pH soil, and direct sunlight. Growing grass over a septic tank can be challenging due to the acidic, low-pH soil resulting from sewage runoff into the leach field.

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.

Can you plant vegetables over a septic tank?

Septic tank vegetable gardens are not recommended. Although a properly functioning septic system should not cause any problems, it is very hard to tell when the system is working 100 percent efficiently. Vegetable plant roots grow down in search of nutrients and water, and they can easily meet wastewater.

Can you plant flowers over a 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.

Can you put anything over a septic field?

To maintain the integrity and longevity of your drainfield, you should never put anything heavy on top of any part of it. You shouldn’t even drive over the drainfield, as the vehicle can crush the drainfield lines. Heavy items cause soil compaction.

Can I plant hydrangeas near septic tank?

You would have no problems with the septic 9′ away – the hydrangea roots will extend approx as far as its widest stems, they don’t have an extensive root system.

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 lilacs be planted near a septic tank?

Since lilac root systems are shallow, they can only reach the base of shallow foundations. If you have a deep foundation, there is little risk of damage. If you’ve planted your lilac shrub 8 to 10 feet (2.5-3 m.) from water and sewer lines, however, there is little risk of damage, even if the pipes have cracks.

How do I hide my above ground septic tank?

Plant Cover

  1. Plant tall grasses or shrubbery around your septic tank.
  2. Put on a pair of gardening gloves.
  3. Sprinkle desired seed into the holes and water the area lightly with a garden hose.
  4. Erect fencing around the tank to hide it.
  5. Disguise the tank base with a bird bath.
  6. Hide the tank base with a fake rock.

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)

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?

Get articles, news, and videos about Onsite Systems delivered directly to your email! Now is the time to sign up. Plus, there are Onsite Systems. Receive Notifications As you go about your daily pumping rounds, you’ve seen the many different ways that homeowners may sabotage their septic systems by using bad landscaping or making other ill-informed land-use decisions. When the driveway becomes overcrowded, people park their automobiles on top of the septic system. They build a wooden deck over the septic tank, making it difficult for you to get to it.

They promote root infiltration, soil compaction, and broken and damaged drainlines, and then wonder why they’re having trouble maintaining the septic tank.

  • On Bowen Island in the British Columbia province of Canada, there is a landscape and garden designer by the name of Wynn Nielsen.
  • A presentation on landscaping around a septic system was recently prepared by Nielsen to assist disgruntled property owners – who may not be aware that they have a septic system or who may not even be aware that they do have one – who are confused about how their system operates.
  • In Nielsen’s experience, landscaping designers are often late to the game when properties are being developed, because landowners have formed preconceived views about how they want to use their lots before the designers arrive.
  • According to her, “septic fields tend to occupy the most appealing portions of a lot, and people tend to want to utilize them.” “People want to build patios, decks, and hot tubs on their properties.
  • I’m the one who has to break the bad news to you that you won’t be able to do that without causing damage to the septic field.
  • “It would be wonderful if there were more awareness of the end-user.” The majority of pumpers are gearing up for the start of the busy season.
  • Some of Nielsen’s presentation may be useful in explaining how each planting decision can affect the effective use and longevity of a customer’s septic system to them in your presentations.

Additionally, Nielsen has some words of wisdom for septic pumpers and installers: If homeowners have a lot of questions and concerns about their landscaping, they should not be shy about calling in an expert.

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.

  1. While cedars are beautiful, they may be a nuisance when they grow next to a septic field.
  2. When homeowners insist on planting trees with significant lateral root development, encourage them to take a deep breath and wait.
  3. The owners of landscape-intensive yards must be cautioned not to plant vegetables over the septic field as this might cause serious problems.
  4. 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.

Growing Over Septic Tanks: Choosing Plants To Grow On A Septic System

Most of the time, homeowners employ Nielsen to design a landscaping plan after a site has been created and a house has been constructed. While Nielsen believes that involving a landscape designer earlier in the process will result in the greatest possible use of a property, he does not believe that this is always the best practice. 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 extensive landscaping.

It’s terrible that these decisions may sometimes make it difficult for people to utilize property that they have spent a lot of money for, according to Nielsen.

” This means they aren’t thinking about how the homeowner will wish to make use of the land.

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.

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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. The following are examples of suitable septic field plants:

  • Butterfly weed, Sedum, Lily of the Nile, Tulip, Daffodils, Hyacinth, Crocus, Foxglove, Black eyed Susan, Primrose, and more flowers

Butterfly weed, Sedum, Lily of the Nile, Tulip, Daffodils, Hyacinth, Crocus, Foxglove, Black-eyed Susan, Primrose, and other flowers.

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.
  • Get so concerned about plants and grasses hurting your septic tank that you completely demolish the surrounding region. Some grasses and plants are particularly effective at collecting excess rainwater surrounding 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.
  • 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. Planting plants or trees around the septic system is a good idea. Forestry professionals recommend planting trees 20 feet or more away from water, but trees that are known to hunt for water should be planted 50 feet or more away from water. Planting shrubs near the system is a good idea. Vegetables that are nutrient-rich can be grown on a septic system. However, contamination is a worry depending on how efficiently your soil filters microorganisms, even if it appears to be excellent for a garden. Susan Day, an expert on urban forestry at Virginia Tech, advocates planting aboveground veggies rather than root vegetables in close proximity as a safeguard. Disrupt the drainage system by constructing ponds, using plastic sheeting, or planting plants that require a lot of upkeep. Increase foot traffic in regions that are already established. The greater the amount of foot traffic, the more compacted the earth gets.

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

Planting huge, rapidly 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:

  • 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

It is advised that a layer of vegetation, such as a lawn, be placed over the drain field to help hold the dirt in place and boost the effectiveness of the system. Certain principles, on the other hand, should be followed in order to avoid costly and unpleasant situations. Perhaps the greatest piece of advise would be to keep trees and bushes out of the landscaping surrounding this location. 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.

If you suspect that encroaching tree roots are causing damage to your system, please contact us at (951) 780-5922 as soon as possible. If you have any questions, we have specialists standing by to help you resolve them and get your system back up and running.

Planting On Your Septic Systems, Landscaping Ideas for Your Drain Field

It is advised that a layer of vegetation, such as a lawn, be placed over the drain field to help hold the dirt in place and improve the effectiveness of the system overall. A few principles, on the other hand, should be followed in order to avoid costly and unpleasant outcomes. Most likely, the greatest piece of advise would be to keep all trees and bushes out of the landscape surrounding this location. Obviously, the best possible functioning of your septic system should be your first priority, but each homeowner will need to do a cost/benefit analysis of the various plants they want to use on their property.

We encourage you to contact us immediately at (951) 780-5922 if you believe that encroaching tree roots are causing damage to your system.

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.

  1. 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.
  2. What is the operation of a septic drain field?
  3. 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.
  4. So, how exactly does a septic system function?
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
  7. 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?

In a nutshell, sure. There are a variety of factors contributing to this. Perhaps most persuasive is the fact that planting on a septic drain field can assist to stabilize the region and lessen the likelihood of the soil cover eroding in the future. Erosion can cause damage to the drain field, which can be extremely expensive to repair because the drain field is often the most expensive component of a septic system. Besides that, plants have the ability to take surplus nutrients and moisture from the soil.

  1. The capillary action of the vegetation’s roots will also suck some of the wastewater out of the soil, which will aid in not only cleaning the water but also in removing some of the soil moisture from the environment.
  2. The planting of grass or low root plants is often required by code to aid in transpiration, erosion management (as previously indicated), and to provide insulative characteristics in cold areas, among other things.
  3. Landscape design over the septic tank will conceal the lids and access locations, while planting on the septic field will provide you with a lush grass and abundant plant life.
  4. Planting on your septic drain field with the appropriate grasses and plants not only improves the performance of the system, but it also completely conceals any underground infrastructure.
  5. Because the root systems of some plants can penetrate and cause damage to the pipes or other components inside the drain field, this is a major reason for this.

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. These kind of plants should require little to no watering, if any at all.

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.
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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 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.
  • 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.
  • It is best to avoid tilling the soil if at all possible. Please keep in mind that the pipe of your septic system drain field may be as near as 12 inches from the soil surface, and in some cases much closer.
  • 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
  • And

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.

Could you please tell me what native plants I can plant on the drain field?

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.

About septic systems

It is important to choose and arrange native plants in your landscaping with regard for their closeness to your septic system, just as you would with any other plant in your environment. Prepare yourself for the septic system by being familiar with its fundamental components before you begin working on your landscaping project. Sub-surface trench systems and mound systems are the two types of septic systems most commonly seen in Michigan. For initial separation and partial treatment, both systems contain piping that leads out of the home and into a septic tank.

  • A soil absorption or drain field is a series of ditches lined with perforated pipe that is laid on a gravel bed or a sand bed. Drain field surrounded by a three- to four-foot mound of sand elevated above ground level.

These fields are structured to drain the external water from rain and snow melt out from the field rather than into it when they are properly designed and constructed. In turn, the surface soils in the drain field become drier than those in other parts of the landscape as a result of this phenomenon. This suggests that the plants you choose for this location should be drought tolerant. Avoid having a lot of people strolling or driving through your drain field. This causes the soil to become compacted, reducing its capacity to effectively drain water.

Irrigation systems should never be installed over a drainage field.

If your drain field area is flooded, has standing water, or accumulates rainwater, it is strongly advised that you stop here and contact for a septic examination.

Choosing plants that do not interfere with septic system operations

These fields are constructed to drain the external water from rain and snow melt out from the field rather than into it when they are properly planned and installed. Surface soils in the drain field are drier than surface soils in other parts of the landscape, as a result of this process. Therefore, the plants you choose for this location should be drought resistant. Avoid having a lot of foot traffic or car traffic pass through your drain field! This results in a compacted soil that is incapable of draining water properly.

Irrigation systems should never be installed over a drainage system.

Note: If your drain field area is flooded, has standing water, or gathers water after a rainstorm, it is strongly suggested that you stop here and contact for a septic examination immediately. Septic system or drain field failure might be the source of your problem.

A few choices for a short grass dry prairie, may include:

  • Wildflowers In sunny spots, plant the following forbs: butterfly weed, sky blue aster (also known as smooth aster), white aster (also known as white aster), sweet everlasting (also known as Canada milk vetch), Lance leaf Coreopsis (also known as purple prairie clover), Pale Purple Coneflower (also known as Rough Blazing Star), Royal Catchfly (also known as Royal Catchfly), Lupine (also known as Dotted Mint), Beardtongue (also Consider the following plants for shaded locations: Astilbe, Hardy Begonia, Turtle Head, Ferns, Sweet Woodruff, and Lady’s Mantle
  • And Grasses and Sedges are a type of plant that grows in a grassy or sedgey environment. Rushes include Sideoats Grama, Little Bluestem, Prairie Dropseed, Plains Oval Sedge, June grass, and Prairie Brome, among others. Shrubs Over any component of a septic system, it is not suggested to plant any type of tree. In the event that you decide to plant trees and shrubs, make sure to pick an upland type and to plant it far enough away from the drain field or mound so the dripline of the mature tree will fall outside of it. Plants that bloom in spring include: Arum, Anemone/Windflowers, Crocus (including Hyacinths), Iris (including Lilies), Daffodils, and Tulips (Note: some of the bulbs listed have been naturalized, but not all of them are native.)

Finally a few reminders:

  • Water-loving plants, bushes, and trees should not be planted in close proximity to your septic system. Growing vegetables over your septic system is not recommended due to the potential of bacterial contamination and the health hazards associated with it. It is not necessary to add more soil to your drainfield. It is necessary to have a septic examination performed if the soil in your drain field region is constantly moist or has standing water, or if you have water backing up into your home. It’s possible that your field failed
  • It is essential that you maintain a layer of vegetation over your drain field in order to keep the dirt in place and keep the system running properly. When planting, try to avoid tilling the soil too much. It is possible that you will upset or damage your drain pipes.
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More resources for planting over septic systems:

Water-loving plants, bushes, and trees should not be grown in close proximity to your septic system. Growing vegetables over your septic system is not recommended due to the danger of bacterial contamination and the health hazards that come with it. No extra dirt should be included into the drain field. If the soil in your drain field area is frequently moist or has standing water, and you are experiencing water backing up into your home, call your county health department or septic service provider for an assessment as soon as possible.

If you disrupt or damage your drain pipes, you might cause serious problems.

Related MSU Extension News articles:

  • Waste management for household septic systems is covered in three parts: Waste management for household septic systems – Part One
  • Waste management for household septic systems – Part Two
  • Waste management for household septic systems – Part Three.

MSU Extension Educator Beth Clawson can be contacted for additional information about the Michigan Septic System Education program. For additional information on landscaping with native plants, contact Michigan State University ExtensionNatural Resources educators, who are working around the state to provide water quality educational programming and support to residents. You can reach out to an educator using MSU Extension’s “Find an Expert” search engine by searching for “Natural Resources Water Quality” in the keywords field.

What to Plant Over Septic Field?

Incorporating properly picked plants into the landscape surrounding a septic tank system not only adds character to an otherwise monotonous expanse of land, but it also has a beneficial effect on the soil. Shallow-rooted plants that can survive in dry soil are good for septic tank drain fields because their roots are shallow. Due to their ability to evacuate moisture from the soil, the plants assist in limiting soil erosion and assisting the drainage system.

Wildflowers

Plants that are simple to cultivate and need little maintenance Wildflowers may add a splash of color to a septic tank location by bursting with a variety of hues. Asters of several varieties are tiny, low-growing plants that produce exquisite blooms in a variety of colors and sizes. This plant, Symphyotrichum ericoides, thrives in USDA plant hardiness zones 3 to 10 and blooms with white flowers in the summer. Growing in USDA zones 3 to 9, the “Blue Star” variety features blue flowers with a yellow center and blooms in the spring.

These flowers grow in USDA zones 4 to 9 and include a variety of cultivars in a variety of brilliant hues, such as the Orange Meadowbrite Coneflower, which is an orange flower with a dark core that is disease resistant.

Black-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia fulgida), with their bright yellow petals and black cores, are also excellent wildflowers for septic fields because of their minimal water requirements. They thrive in USDA growing zones 3 to 9.

Bulbs

Planting bulbs in the sewage tank field can give your yard a more formal appearance. Drain pipes will not be clogged by bulbs with shallow roots. Dahlias are hardy in USDA zones 7 to 10, and there are several varieties with brightly colored blooms on long stalks that come in a variety of forms and sizes. Agapanthus can live over extended periods of time with little or no water. They contain blooms with trumpet-shaped purple, blue, and white petals, as well as other varieties. They thrive in USDA growing zones 6 to 10.

It is a small shrub with large purple blooms that are quite striking.

Grasses

Plant bulbs in the sewage tank field to give your yard a more formal appearance. Drain pipes will not be clogged by shallow-rooted bulbs. Daisy hybrids with brightly colored blooms on long stalks come in a wide range of forms and sizes and thrive in USDA zones 7 to 10. Long lengths of time with little or no water are not a problem for Agapanthus. Purple, blue, and white trumpet-shaped petals may be seen on several of the flowers in this collection. From USDA zones 6 through 10, they may be seen growing.

Short and bushy, it bears lovely lilac blooms in the spring and summer.

Considerations

Septic tank fields may appear to be healthy expanses of land, but there is a risk of pollution from effluent that seeps into the soil over time and becomes contaminated. While some types of soil, such as clay, are capable of filtering germs, the land may include hazardous bacteria as a result of trash and toxins. The contaminants might be absorbed by the plants growing on the area. Because of this, you should avoid planting consumables in septic tank fields, such as root crops and green vegetables, among other things.

This can cause problems with septic systems.

Make Sure to Choose Appropriate Plants to Grow Above Your Septic System

Have you ever given consideration to which plants should be planted where in your yard? Have you ever given any consideration to where the roots of those plants would eventually grow? Keep in mind that understanding where different utility lines and services are on your property is an important part of keeping your home safe; keep this in mind the next time you plant something in the backyard. If you are still hesitant, keep in mind that you may always request a Colorado utility locate by dialing 811.

Your Best Choices and a List of What to Avoid Planting

Because of their tenacious roots, many trees and bushes can cause significant damage in and near septic tanks and drain fields. Which plants were the most difficult to grow over a septic system, and which ones were the safest options to use?

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. Small, non-woody ground covers and grasses (including decorative grasses) are the best plants to utilize around your septic tank and drain field because their shallow root systems are less likely to infiltrate and cause harm to your subterranean system.

Naturally, there are an infinite number of such plants to choose from, so you will want to cut down your options as much as possible. Consider the following growth conditions as a good place to start:

  1. 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 entirely. Here, it is not only permitted, but also preferable, to cultivate the appropriate types of plants. Aerial plants will help to avoid erosion and will absorb part of the surplus water from the drain field. Because their shallow root systems are less prone to infiltrate and cause harm to the subsurface system, perennials, annuals, tiny, non-woody ground coverings, and grasses (including decorative grasses) function best near your septic tank and drain field. Naturally, there are an infinite number of such plants to choose from, so you will want to limit down your options as best you can. Consider the following growth conditions as a good place to start.
  1. When it comes to plants growing over septic systems, Bambi will not turn his nose up at them
  2. Therefore, if you have a problem with this large pest eating your plants in your area, you should look into deer-resistant perennials and deer-resistant ground covers, as well as spring bulbs and ornamental grasses that deer do not consume

The growing (and eating) of food crops on the earth near a drain field is not recommended 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 following are examples of shallow-rooted plants and shrubs:

  1. 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

Planting huge, rapidly 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:

  1. A variety of willow plants, including pussy willow and Japanese willow, aspen trees, Lombardy poplars, birch trees, beech trees, and elm trees
  2. The majority of maple trees (apart from Japanese maples)
  3. American sweetgum trees
  4. Ash trees
  5. Tulip trees

Consider the following scenario: you have avoided planting any of the most hazardous plants immediately over your septic tank’s drain field. Are you sure you’re out of the woods? No! Despite this, any huge, mature trees that may be growing anywhere near your septic system represent a threat to your health and safety. The basic guideline is that a tree of this size must be at least as far away from your septic drain field as it is tall — and that is the very minimum distance required. As a result, a mature specimen 50 feet tall should be at least 50 feet distant from the viewer.

Why You Have to Be So Careful Planting Over Septic Tank Drainfields

When it comes to planting near septic tanks, the drain field pipes are the most important thing to consider. If roots penetrate the perforations and clog the system, it is best to remove them immediately. All of the components of this meticulously calibrated system must be in perfect working order, or else the result will be a disaster – and a pricey one at that. Despite the fact that annual flowers are shallow-rooted enough to be used as septic-field plants, the fact that they must be planted every year makes them less than ideal.

If you are digging in a drain field, you should always wear gloves to protect your hands.

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.

4.

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.

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