Optimal Technique for Calculating the Square Footage of Your Lawn

Optimal Technique for Calculating the Square Footage of Your Lawn

Understanding your lawn’s square footage is crucial. This will enable you to apply the correct amount of water, fertilizer, weed, and pest control products. Overusing these products may harm your lawn and cause you to waste money. On the other hand, buying the right amount of products will prevent you from making multiple trips to the hardware store because of shortages.

So, how can you calculate the square footage of your lawn? There are a variety of online apps that you can use, such as Planimeter. But, many of these apps have a fee you must pay. One of the easiest ways to measure the square footage of your lawn for free is to use Google Earth. It’s accurate, simple to use, and doesn’t take more than a few minutes. Also, unlike Planimeter and some other apps, the best part is that Google Earth won’t cost you a thing.

How to calculate your lawn’s square footage using Google Earth

Person looking at Google


First, go to Google Earth on your computer. In the top left, it says to search Google Earth, enter your home address, and then zoom in on your property. You’ll probably have to do your lawn in sections. Start with the back, and then do the sides and front. Click the measure distance and area icon in the top left. This icon is shaped like a measuring stick. Set your measuring points by clicking on the map. According to Google Earth, you should make clicks along the perimeter of your lawn. If you want to remove a point, click undo. Then, double-click on your last point to complete the measurement.

Google Earth will give you both the area and perimeter measurements. You’ll want to look at the area measurement to find the square feet. It might be listed in square meters initially. To change the units to square feet, just click on the down arrow to the right. You will then want to clear the measurement and do this for all areas of your lawn. When you are finished, add up all the measurements for your entire lawn.

Other ways to measure your lawn

House and lawn

Siri Stafford/Getty Images

If Google Earth doesn’t work for you or you’d rather measure your lawn another way, you can use an old-school method — a tape measure. This can also be a good way to confirm your Google Earth measurements to make sure they are accurate. First, break your lawn into a rectangle or square-shaped sections. Measure the length and width of each section. Multiply the two numbers together to get the square feet for that section. Once you have the square feet of each section, add the numbers together to get the total square feet.

If you have uneven terrain or a hilly yard, a tape measure might not be best. Google Earth can give you inaccurate measurements in these cases, as well. The best option is to use a measuring wheel. To use this device, you would first break your lawn into sections in either square or rectangular shapes. Then, roll the wheel along your lawn in both directions to measure the length and width. A counter will record how many feet have passed. To get the square footage, multiply the length by the width.

Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.