Planting over rural septic system

Asked June 5, 2020, 8:06 AM EDT

I want to put in a clover and grass mix lawn. Clover is deep rooted and I need to know if it will hurt my septic leaching field and system

St. Louis County Minnesota

1 Response

Hi, thanks for the question. I apologize for our delay in getting back to you but it is a very busy time of the year for us.

When planting and landscaping over a septic mound, one needs to avoid excessive soil compaction as this will impair evaporation from the mound. For this reason, plantings on the mound should have a shallow root structure, again to avoid compacting the soil. These plantings should not require extensive watering as this applied water will diminish evaporation from the mound. In addition to the options you mentioned (which are fine), here are a couple of references for other possibilities:

https://homeguides.sfgate.com/landscape-plants-mound-systems-61897.html

https://www.post-gazette.com/life/garden/2014/02/22/Groundcovers-suitable-for-a-septic-mound/stories/201402220026

https://www.thespruce.com/safe-plants-to-grow-over-septic-tanks-and-drainfields-2132661

https://www.pubs.ext.vt.edu/content/dam/pubs_ext_vt_edu/426/426-617/426-617_pdf.pdf

Good luck!!