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A Guide To Trees And Sewer Pipes

Trees and plants add to your home’s overall curb appeal. They offer a feeling of scenic scenery that would complement any home. On the other hand, septic tanks are unsightly but an essential part of a well-functioning residence. It’s one thing to keep your yard looking nice, but having these plants and trees interfere with your sewer lines is a bad idea. If you intend to plant fresh vegetation, make sure you choose trees whose roots are sewer-safe.

Massive, fast-growing trees will cause the most issues in the vicinity of your sewage and drainage systems. These trees and bushes are active in their search for water and will grow wherever they are required. Even though these tree roots do not snowball, they develop under tremendous strain, which is when they start causing difficulties for your drain pipes and water pipes.

Read further to discover some of the most suitable trees to plant near sewer pipes and helpful tips that you can use while planting the trees.

Helpful Tips For Planting Trees Near Sewer Pipes

Plan your Trees in Relation to the Sewer Pipes

Before you can plant any trees near your sewer pipes, you have to spend some time planning your gardening in relation to the drain pipes and sewage system. If you do not know exactly where your drain lines flow, this might be a complex process. Call a professional drain cleaning service to inspect the landscape and aid you in determining the exact location of your drain pipes.

Select the Right Species of Trees

Most trees and plants pose a hazard to your drain pipes: their roots, given enough time, can penetrate or block your drain. There are a few, nevertheless, that are proven to do more significant damage than others. Therefore, smaller, slower-growing species are the safest bet. Ultimately, the effect of these trees on your sewage line is determined by the species’ growth habits.

Distance the Trees from the Sewer Pipes

When planting shrubs or trees, please remember the spacing between them. Plant them at least three metres away from your sewage line. Do not plant them near your drain pipes. This is a standard rule to follow irrespective of the species you pick. Trees with broad, spreading root systems should be placed at least 30 metres away from your sewer so that no immediate harm occurs.

Regularly Monitor and Manage the Trees

There is still the possibility that the roots of the trees in your garden have zig-zagged underground despite your efforts to ensure that they had been planted far enough from your sewer line. This could then result in the blockage of your drain pipes.

The best way to prevent interference is to regularly monitor and manage the trees and vegetation surrounding your sewer pipes. Call in specialists regularly to thoroughly check the region to verify that you are in the safe zone. Drain specialists will be able to tell you if your drain lines are in danger of being taken over.

Only Plant a Few Number of Trees

You should only plant trees near sewer lines if they are necessary. If you do so, try to plant as few as possible. Consider other options for reaching your landscaping objectives. You may build a trellis and train a climbing vine to grow on it if you require shade. A hedge or wall near sewage or other utility lines may be a preferable alternative for wind protection. Ground coverings are an excellent way to add colour and texture.

Lateral interest is essential in every landscape design, but trees are not the only method to achieve it. Pergolas, arbours, hanging baskets, sculptures, potted trees, and plant racks are all choices in addition to trellises, walls, and fences.

Replace the Trees with Other Features

Overplanting causes strain on the region around your sewer pipes and can damage your pipes. There are a few options to consider based on the aim of your tree planting. For example, you can use fences or make-shift walls to give height to a particular region that appears to be a little flat.

You can also utilise hanging plants, potted trees, or plant-filled hanging baskets. A trellis will help if you want to provide shade in an area that is close to your sewage system. Ground coverings are an excellent way to add colour to your compound.

Meddling with the essential function of the septic system will cause problems for your family that you can easily avoid with little direction and organisation. Adding too much dirt to the area surrounding your sewer pipes is not a good idea since it will interfere with the normal evaporation process. Overwatering the plants and trees around this region should also be avoided.

Even if you take extreme caution while planting trees around your sewer system, you may be in for a shock. Nature flourishes in the places it chooses. Contact a drain rooter professional if you suspect that the garden surroundings are interfering with your sewerage system. They can determine how your drain is afflicted.

Best Trees To Plant Near Sewer Pipes

So it has occurred again! You have blocked drains that are causing significant issues in your house and yard. And who is the prime suspect? Trees! Not all trees are created equal; some are more prone to infiltrating your sewer pipes than others. When it comes to planting trees near sewage systems or water mains, you must exercise extreme caution. Fortunately, some alternatives are more secure than others.

Below you will find a list of the finest hedges and statement trees to plant to avoid interference with your sewer pipes. Just read on as the list will help you choose the ideal one for your garden or compound.

Apple Trees

Generally, you can plant small apple trees within a few metres of your water line. Apple trees are visually appealing and have the added advantage of generating extra delectable delights when adequately maintained. Therefore, as long as you do not flush your apple cores down the toilet, an apple tree should not cause too many difficulties with clogged drains.

Feijoa Tree

This is another delectable option on this list, but one you might not be acquainted with. Feijoa trees have non-invasive root systems, are remarkably pest and disease resistant, and yield the same-named fruit. Feijoas combine a strong zest with sweetness to create a really one-of-a-kind flavour experience. They also drop their fruits when they ripen. Therefore, this is a sign that allows you to know when your feijoas are edible. Plant a feijoa tree and get all of the advantages, including no more blocked drains.

The Coastal Golden Wattle

Display your patriotism with a non-invasive native Australian shrub. Around September, the Coastal Golden Wattle grows to approximately five metres in height and presents a spectacular show of golden yellow blooms.


Azaleas are a simple yet lovely way to add beauty to your garden. Azaleas can create a beautiful pink display and offer your garden the look you crave without resulting in blockages in your drain pipes. You can also choose to plant azaleas in pots and scatter them about your home. This allows you to colour-match your inside and outside.

Bay Trees

Try a bay tree to keep drain clogs away. These slow-growing trees produce a deep green colour, and you can use their leaves to flavour food. These trees provide a lot of form and character to any yard. You win both in the garden and in the kitchen.

Consequences Of Choosing The Wrong Trees

Trees and bushes are a vital component of our built environment, but if not correctly selected, they can cause infrastructural harm that you could have otherwise avoided. To locate water and mineral nutrients, trees and plants rely on their roots. The sewer pipes in your home might be an appealing moisture source. All it takes is for the root to get through is a little break in the pipe. Once within the pipe, the root can snowball, reducing water flow and possibly producing a total blockage. Often, entire portions of the damaged pipe must be replaced, which is bound to be costly.

Pipes That Are Vulnerable To Tree Root Invasion

Some pipe types are more resistant to the environment than others; this also pertains to root penetration and development. Steel and PVC pipelines, for example, are the least vulnerable to root damage. Steel pipelines are strong enough to withstand puncturing by tree roots, and PVC or cured-in-place pipelines do not provide many entry sites for roots to begin with.

Pipes made of cement, clay, Orangeburg, or cast iron, on the other hand, deteriorate substantially over time and are particularly vulnerable to drain pipe damages from tree roots. In the long run, it is more effective and cost-effective to opt for steel and PVC pipes for root invasions, or you will spend more to do pipe relining.

Features To Consider When Planting Trees Near Sewer Pipes

Smaller, slow-growing trees or bushes are the best plant alternatives for locations near water pipelines, except for shallow-rooted herbaceous plants. However, keep in mind that the neighbouring water pipes need to be in excellent working order. Root intrusion is especially dangerous in older pipelines constructed of concrete or clay.

If a pipe has a leak, tree roots will grow towards the water source and can even penetrate and choke the pipe. When correctly placed between the root system and the pipes, Geotextiles or other root barriers can restrict or impede root growth. Even slow-growing trees with a restricted spread may need to be replaced after about ten years to avoid harm.

Reach Out To A Plumbing Specialist To Guide You

Taking the effort to prepare sewer-safe landscaping for your house will prevent you from unpleasant sewage overflows and costly repairs. It also does not have to be a difficult task. Keep tiny, slow-growing trees and bushes away from your sewer pipes, and your sewer system will be root-free for years.

Having said that, no two drainage systems, landscapes, or houses are precisely alike. If you intend to landscape around your pipeline, it is a good idea to start by visiting a plumbing specialist who can guide and advise you of any potential issues.

Blueline Plumbers are your local specialist for all domestic plumbing and gas fitting needs.

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