Now that the drainfield is installed we set to work restoring the displaced native vegetation. During the installation, we had our crew dig up and save over 30 sword ferns that covered the area. We knew that we wanted to avoid planting non-native grasses on the property when possible. So, we chose to mimic the surrounding natural vegetation by re-planting the sword ferns and supplementing the area with other native ground covers present elsewhere on the property. Our local nursery has a great selection of native plants. We picked up two pallets of Salal and Oregon Grape and got to work.
Here, in the Pacific Northwest, there are many shade-loving native species of plants that are idea for drainfileds not in full sun. These plants have shallow roots and hold soils in place: Salal, Oregon Grape, Wild Ginger, Pacific Bleeding Heart, Oxalis, and vanilla leaf (to name a few).
These plants will spread under the soil with runners and shoots, so we spaced them 1-3 feet apart and varied their locations across the bare soil without disturbing the equipment underneath.
Frequent watering and weeding will need to be done this summer and native seeds will be planted (to germinate and be in full force next spring). The ferns will look a bit sickly until next spring, but will undoubtedly come roaring back (sword ferns are incredibly resilient to being transplanted). We will continue to update on progress of the restoration area. Happy planting…