Things To Know About Landscaping Over A Septic System

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You recently bought a house in the country and would like to have some landscaping done. You're working up some ideas, but you're not sure what's acceptable above the septic tank and drain field. Landscaping professionals know how to address this part of the yard so nothing compromises your private sewage treatment system. 

Avoiding Soil Compacting

A primary concern when doing landscaping in this area is that the soil should stay loose and not be compacted. That means no driving or parking over this part of the yard, no paved areas, and no large amount of regular foot traffic.

Suitable Plants

Shallow-root grasses and other plants that don't have deep roots are best for over the tank and leach field. Tree and shrub roots can damage drain lines in the field, causing a need for expensive repair work. Near the tank, roots can grow into tiny cracks in the sewer pipe and cause sewer backups. 

Grass is the easiest option, but you might want some decorative plants if this is part of your front yard, or if you want a pretty view from certain windows in your house. Landscapers might create a seasonal flower garden with bulbs for plants such as tulips and hyacinths, seeds for native wildflowers, and flats of flowers you particularly like. Grassy areas in and around the garden to prevent soil erosion are advisable. 

The flowers and other plants -- such as ferns -- should be species that don't require a great deal of attention. That way, you're not regularly walking around in this part of the yard and compacting the soil. Native plants and hardy species are best so you don't have to add much water to the drain field and you don't have to use fertilizer. 

What About a Vegetable Garden? 

Even if this is the sunniest part of your yard, a vegetable garden should go elsewhere. These gardens often require tilling, frequent weeding, fertilization and annual deliveries of high-quality soil. None of this is particularly good for the land over a septic system.  

In addition, root crops such as potatoes and carrots might become contaminated by any bacteria in the leach field. 

Irrigation Considerations

If you'll be having an irrigation system installed, the technicians shouldn't install sprinkler heads that would water the septic system. Excess water interferes with the normal filtration and evaporation process. 

Concluding Thoughts

When you have a landscaping professional come to your home, point out where the septic system boundaries are. Talk about ideas you have for this part of the yard, and get expert advice. Soon you'll be enjoying the beauty of your rural property with your own customized landscaping. 

For more information, contact Martin Landscaping or a similar company.

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17 June 2015

embracing swampy property and landscaping it

I have one area behind my home that is so swampy that I could not do anything with it. I figured that I would embrace the excessive moisture and find a way to incorporate it into the landscape design. I started working with a landscape professional to learn what plants would look great, absorb some of the water and require little to no maintenance throughout the year. He helped me find some great solutions for the problem and now, I don't look out my back window and see an ugly swamp, I see a serene environment that I love to call mine.