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Can I put raised beds over a septic leach field

12 years ago

I've got a front yard that is sandy and has good drainage (on Cape Cod, Mass). The septic system leaching field is underneath it. It has fantastic south exposure. So I'm thinking about putting raised vegetable beds on it - not covering the whole area but 3 4 by 10 foot beds. Many seem to think this is a bad idea.

Based on my searching, I've heard the following:

- Raised beds can impair the function of the leaching field (the pipes a several feet below) - I have no idea why except maybe because you water the garden and that may be a problem or perhaps the weight of the beds. ??

- All kinds of irrational fears about the effluent being sucked up by the vegetable roots. This makes no sense since water goes down not up and even the deepest vegetable roots are only 2-3 feet deep at the deepest. Even then some nitrogen rich water would seem to me to be a bonus.

I'm interested in experiences anyone has had with this sort of situation. What's really the bottom line here?

Thanks for any help-


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