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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - March 14, 2011

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Septic Systems
Title: Native plants for septic field in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Do you have guidance for west Austin residents regarding landscaping a septic field with native plants?

ANSWER:

We found a previous answer addressing this exact question so please read that first. They had other considerations, such as turf grass, but the basic plan is still good. The main thing you do not want to do is plant woody plants whose roots will aim straight for the moisture in those lines and do damage. We recommend native herbaceous blooming plants and grasses. The fibrous roots will help to hold soil against erosion but not interfere with the septic lines, and be attrative.

 

 

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