Geometric Shapes

The square footage of many lawns can be estimated by the use of geometric figures such as rectangles, circles, ovals or triangles. Some irregular shapes can be divided into smaller geometric shapes, and their areas added together to estimate the area of the entire lawn.

The area of a lawn with an irregular shape can be difficult to measure. To make measuring simpler, divide the irregular shape into smaller geometric shapes. Add individual areas together to calculate total area. Refer to the following examples for possible geometric shape combinations. LayLa Burgess, © 2017 HGIC, Clemson Extension

Example 1 is a series of large rectangles and small triangles. LayLa Burgess, © 2017 HGIC, Clemson Extension

Converting Other Units to Yards

In order for the length × width formula to work, both measurements must be in the same unit. But if you want the answer to be in square yards, then the length and width measurements must be in yards. If you don’t have access to a ruler with yard markings, or if you’re finding it to get exact measurements in terms of yards, you can take your measurements in another unit and then convert them to yards before you calculate the area.

The most common conversion into yards that you can expect to make is feet to yards. 3 feet equal 1 yard, so to convert from feet to yards, divide by three.

Example: Convert 51 feet into yards.

51 feet ÷ 3 feet/yard = 17 yards



The area of a circle is the radius squared (r2) multiplied by π = 3.14. The radius is equal to one-half the diameter of the circle.

Area = π r2

Area = (3.14)r2

Example 2:

Calculate the area of a circle with a radius of 30 ft.

Area = (3.14)r2

Area = (3.14)(30 ft)2 remember, square the radius first then multiply by 3.14

Area = 2,826 ft²

How to Calculate Square Footage

Square footage is area expressed in square feet. Likewise, square yardage is area expressed in square yards.  Square meters is also a common measure of area.

Assume you have a rectangular area such as a room and, for example, you want to calculate the square footage area for flooring or carpet.

The way to calculate a rectangular area is by measuring the length and width of your area then multiplying those two numbers together to get the area in feet squared (ft2). If you have on oddly shaped area, such as an L-shape, split it into square or rectanglualar sections and treat them as two separate areas. Calculate the area of each section then add them together for your total. If your measurements are in different units, say feet and inches, you can first convert those values to feet, then multiply them together to get the square footage of the area.

Convert all of your measurements to feet

  • If you measured in feet skip to “Calculate the Area as Square Footage”
  • If you measured in feet & inches, divide inches by 12 and add that to your feet measure to get total feet
  • If you measured in another unit of measure, do the following to convert to feet – inches: divide by 12 and that is your measurement in feet – yards: multiply by 3 and that is your measurement in feet – centimeters: multiply by 0.03281 to convert to feet – meters: multiply by 3.281 to convert to feet

Calculate the Area as Square Footage

  • If you are measuring a square or rectangle area, multiply length times width; Length x Width = Area.
  • For other area shapes, see formulas below to calculate Area (ft2) = Square Footage.

How to Find Your Property’s Square Footage with Online Tools

Mobile applications for your smartphone or other devices make measuring easier and more accurate for you.

Here are some lawn measuring apps:

  • Global Syn-Turf
    • Enter your address, and then use the Pen tool to mark your grass areas
  • Google Earth
    • Enter your address, and use the ‘Measure distance and area’ tool to mark the grassy areas of your lawn
  • Measure My Lawn
    • Use the measurement tools provided to mark the lawn areas of your yard
  • Planimeter.
    • Download this mobile app for $2.99 to measure the square footage of your yard

Determining the Size of Area

Step 1: Inspect the Area

The first piece of information you need to know is the shape and dimensions of your lawn, particularly the width and length. You will want to measure and multiply the area length times the width in feet until the square footage is 1,000 sq. ft. and mark off this area with the help of a marking tool like washable paint or objects to distinguish the treatment areas border line. 

Step 2: Convert Measurements

If your yard is rectangular or square, measure the length and width then multiply together (length X width = square footage). For example, if your yard has a length of 10 feet and width of 8 feet, you would multiply 10 by 8 to get 80 square feet.

Be aware for triangle shaped lawns, you will measure the length and width, multiply together, then divide by two ( length X width / 2 = square footage).

If your lawn is a not a perfect rectangle, break the lawn into different sections to measure more easily, then add measurements together to get the area’s total square footage.

For treatment areas with flowerbeds and other obstructions in the yard you will measure the square footage of the object and subtract from your yards total square footage.

Example, you have a property that is 12,000 sq. ft. and in the middle you have a landscape bed with a length of 3 feet and width of 2 feet. You will multiply 3 by 2 to get 6 feet, then subtract from your yard total.

  • 3 ft. X 2 ft. = 6 sq. ft. 
  • 12,000 sq. ft. – 6 sq. ft. = 11,994 sq. ft. 

Therefore, you will treat an area with 11,994 sq. ft. 

Reader Interactions


  1. CooperCooper says

    I never would have thought to use Google Maps to measure my lawn!! This is SUCH a helpful tip! Now I don’t have to go out and buy one of those measuring wheels!! Thank you so much!!!


Put Your Info to Use!

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