Do: Put grass seed or wildflowers on the septic field mound. Even weeds are better than leaving the ground above the septic field bare.

-These plantings will prevent the sun from beating down onto your septic drain field.

-All flowers must be shallow rooted, as the field itself can be as little 4 inches from the surface.

-Grasses and flowers stabilize the soils in the area.

-Not only do plants prevent erosion, but they will also use the extra moisture from the drain field. For shady areas Creeping Charlie which is ivy, can be used as it will multiply and cover the area. That said it is often hard to limit its growth to just the portion of lawn you want it be it.

-You want plants that require little digging or maintenance.

DO: Plant shallow rooted trees/shrubs like Azalea shrubs, Dogwood, Crabapple and Cherry trees, Holly and Boxwood shrubs near the septic drain field.

-Ornamental grasses can also be planted not on top of but near the septic field.

-Their shallow root systems are less likely to invade the underground system and cause it damage.

-You don’t want to add soil to the septic drain field, mulching too much or having to water anything frequently.

-How far away trees need to be from a septic system depends on their mature height. A mature tree which will be 30 feet high will need to be 30 feet away.You can also install root barriers to prevent roots spreading to the septic drain field.

DO NOT: Plant a garden any nearer than 10 feet away. Further away would be much better, particularly if it is a vegetable and fruit garden.

DO NOT: Plant willows including pussy willow shrubs anywhere near your septic or septic drain field. Other trees include: Aspen, Birch, Beech, Elm, Ash, Tulip or American Sweetgum trees.

-These trees have deep reaching root systems, which not only go deep but also spread out.

DO NOT: Park a car or ANY heavy machinery on top of the septic drain field. Avoid anything that could do damage to underground pipe system.

DO NOT: Allow children to play on the septic drain field.

-Everything that is flushed or tossed down a drain winds up in the drain field, some of which is toxic. The depth of your field can vary from inches to feet. If there has been a lot of rain or your system is old, hazards can and do exist. Excess water will slow down wastewater treatment.


IF you see bright grass growing on your septic drain field call a septic professional, this is a sign of a system failure or leak.