Take the 2-minute tour ×
Home Improvement Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for contractors and serious DIYers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Any suggestions for how to care for the land area directly above a septic tank? I'm a first-time home buyer with a septic tank in my front yard. I'd like it to be aesthetically pleasing and consistent with the rest of the yard but didn't know if there was any special considerations to be aware of (e.g. don't water, mow, seed, etc).


share|improve this question
Do you mean "above the septic tank" or "above the septic drain field"? –  Jay Bazuzi Oct 31 '10 at 2:54
add comment

3 Answers

up vote 8 down vote accepted

You can pretty much do anything above a septic tank, as long as you aren't going to be doing major landscaping that requires tractors, heavy equipment, etc..

The one thing you do want to be aware of is the location of any inspection pipes, or manholes that might have a negative effect on mower blades. Trying to mow around these nice yard "features" can be quite frustrating. For our old system, we mulched around the area containing the manholes and inspection pipes (~ 4" white pvc pipe with a cap), and planted a nice flower garden around it. We had our 3-year pumpings scheduled in the early spring before we plant, and if we needed work done on the system, flowers are easy enough to re-plant. There are also some realistic looking fake hollow rocks you can buy- we'll probably do this at our new place, as the covers are in an area not well suited to a flower garden.

share|improve this answer
Brilliant suggestions/feedback as always Mark. Thanks! –  Mike B Oct 3 '10 at 23:25
Mark mostly touched on it, but recognize that when you do need to get service done, the area around it will be trampled a bit. Don't put anything too elaborate or delicate in the way, and be prepared to do some fixing after the crew is gone (as well intentioned as they may be, the people that work on septic systems aren't landscapers). –  gregmac Jan 30 '11 at 6:17
add comment

I wouldn't water the septic drain field. I would leave it dry so it can absorb as much water from the septic as possible.

share|improve this answer
Unless the leach field has serious problems, this is NEVER an issue. If the lawn needs watering, do so. In fact, if the lawn needs watering, this is a reflection that there is not much water being used by the grass from those leach lines buried deeply under the lawn. –  user558 Jan 30 '11 at 10:38
add comment

When it comes to make the hatch invisible, I personally use a large flowers vase. Previously I had a human statue (of manageable weight). It adds a nice touch of classic to the garden, and it can be removed easily from the hatch when you require emptying. Unfortunately it is prone to falling when you have a dog or small children. The vase is a much safer solution.

share|improve this answer
Presumably a statue of the Manneken Pis ? –  mgb May 25 '11 at 18:21
add comment

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.