Ultimate Guide: Measuring Your Garden for Perfect Turfing

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Ever looked at your garden and pondered, “How can I accurately measure this for turfing?” Many passionate gardeners dive into turfing, only to discover they’ve misjudged the space.

Such missteps can be expensive in both time and money. But here’s the silver lining! By the end of this guide, you’ll have the know-how to measure your garden like an expert.

A startling stat: Over 30% of homeowners miscalculate their garden dimensions when buying turf. But why is getting the right measurements so crucial? A precisely measured garden paves the way for effortless turfing and a verdant, unified lawn.

So, are you ready to transform your garden? Dive in as we walk you through each step, ensuring your space is primed and ready for its green makeover.

Tools and Materials Needed for Garden Measurement

To accurately measure your garden, you’ll need a measuring tape or ruler for its length and width, as well as a calculator or measurement app to determine the area after multiplying those dimensions. For irregular shapes, graph paper can help break down complex areas into simpler shapes for precise measurements and planning.

Measuring Tape or Ruler

A measuring tape or ruler is fundamental when measuring your garden. Whether your garden is a square or rectangular lawn or has more intricate designs, a long tape measure, especially one that can span the entire length of the site, will be invaluable.

If you’re wondering about the units, gardens can be measured in meters, feet, or yards, based on personal preference. The longer the tape measure, the easier it will be to measure the length and width of the garden lawn in one go, ensuring accuracy.

Calculator or Measurement App

Calculations are crucial in the turf measuring guide. After measuring, you’d have to multiply the garden’s length and width to ascertain the area of your lawn. This is where a calculator or an online turf calculator app comes into play. These handy tools can not only help you calculate how many rolls of turf you need but also give insights into potential wastage.

Usually, adding an extra 5% to the measurement will account for cuts and wastage. For those less mathematically inclined, an online turf calculator is a fantastic way to work out how much turf you’ll require without the fuss.

Graph Paper (for Irregular Shapes)

Not all gardens are perfectly square or rectangular. Some have unique, irregularly shaped lawn areas, while others might have a triangle lawn or even a circle. When dealing with these shapes and sizes, simple measurements won’t suffice. This is where graph paper steps in. If your garden lawn is of an odd shape, you can break it down into smaller, more regular shapes, like rectangles, squares, or triangles.

By plotting these on graph paper, you can measure each section separately, ensuring every nook and cranny is accounted for. Once all measurements are noted, it’s just a matter of calculating the area for each shape and summing them up to know how much turf you will need.

Basic Principles of Measuring for Turf

Gearing up to lay your turf? Before you embark on that journey, a comprehensive understanding of some fundamental principles of measurement can make the process smoother and more precise.

Understanding Square Meters (m^2)

When it comes to measuring garden space, the term square meters (or m^2) is often encountered. So, what exactly is a square meter? Quite simply, it’s a unit of area equivalent to a square that has sides of 1 metre each. If you plan to measure your lawn area in square metres, you’ll often be dealing with this unit.

To calculate the area of your garden, especially if you’re dealing with a rectangle lawn, measure the width and length of the space. Once you have those figures, multiply them together. For instance, if your garden is 5 meters in length and 4 meters in width, the total area is 20 square meters.

But what if the area isn’t a perfect rectangle or square? If your lawn is triangular, for example, you’ll need to calculate the area of a triangle. Odd-shaped gardens might require a bit more creativity – you might need to break the lawn down into smaller measurable sections like squares, rectangles, or triangles. Each section can then be measured separately, and the results added up.

Importance of Overestimating Measurements

When you’ve figured out the size of your lawn, whether it’s in square yards or square metres, it’s tempting to order the exact amount of turf required. This could leave you short. Turf rolls can vary in size, and laying the turf might result in pieces of turf being cut to fit certain areas.

That’s why it’s crucial to overestimate your measurements. It’s generally a good practice to add an extra 5% to the measured area. This accounts for wastage and ensures you have enough turf to cover the entire garden without running out.

Let’s say you calculated your garden to be 100 square metres, ordering turf for an area of 105 square metres would be a wise move. It also reduces the likelihood that your lawn will need additional turf orders, allowing you to lay grass and get your lawn established more quickly.


Basic Principles of Measuring for Turf

Measuring Different Lawn Shapes for Turf

Gardens come in a myriad of shapes and sizes. Knowing how to measure each distinct shape ensures that you purchase the right amount of turf for a stunningly seamless garden. Here’s a guide tailored to each lawn configuration:

Square or Rectangle

This is perhaps the simplest shape to calculate. To measure square or rectangular lawns:

  1. Measure the length and the width of the lawn. Whether you measure in feet, meters, or yards, ensure consistency throughout.
  2. Multiply the length by the width to get the area. For instance, if you have a rectangular lawn that measures 10 meters in length and 5 meters in width, you’ll need turf covering 50 square meters.


Circular lawns can be a tad trickier but remain manageable:

  1. Measure the diameter of the circle. The diameter is the full distance across the circle.
  2. Find the radius by halving the diameter. If your circle has a diameter of 10 meters, then the radius is 5 meters.
  3. Using the formula A = πr^2, calculate the area. Here,  is approximately 3.142, and r stands for the radius. In our example, the area would be π×52 or approximately 78.55 square meters.


An oval is an elongated circle, and its measurement involves:

  1. Measure both the length and width of your oval.
  2. Halve these measurements to determine  and respectively.
  3. The area, , of the oval is given by A = πr1r2. So, if you have an oval with a length of 12 meters and a width of 8 meters, the area would be or approximately 75.40 square meters.


Triangles, with their three sides, are straightforward with the right formula:

  1. Measure the base and the height of the triangle. The height is the perpendicular distance from the base to the opposite vertex.
  2. The formula provides the area, where  is the base and is the height. If your triangle has a base of 8 meters and a height of 6 meters, the area is 0.5×8×6 or 24 square meters.

Irregular or Miscellaneous Shapes

These shapes demand a more piecemeal approach:

  1. Start by dividing the irregular shape into familiar shapes – rectangles, circles, triangles, etc.
  2. Measure and calculate the area of each segmented shape using their respective methods.
  3. Sum up the areas of all these smaller sections to yield the total area of your irregularly shaped lawn.

When all your measurements are in place, remember the golden rule: overestimate. It’s advised to add about 5% to your final measurement. This ensures you’re adequately covered for any unforeseen cuts and adjustments.

If the entire measurement process seems daunting, or if you’re worried about possible inaccuracies, it might be a wise move to seek the professional services of PI Gardening. Their expertise can save you both time and potential missteps, ensuring your lawn is ready for that lush layer of turf.

Tips for Measuring Irregularly Shaped Lawns for Turf

Irregularly shaped lawns, with their quirky nooks and crannies, present unique challenges when it comes to measuring for turf. With a systematic approach, even the most peculiar lawns can be effectively measured. Below are invaluable strategies to employ:

Using Graph Paper for Approximation

A visual representation can be a game-changer when navigating the intricacies of an irregular lawn:

  1. Begin by sketching your lawn’s layout on a piece of graph paper. This gives you a bird’s-eye view of your garden’s geometry.
  2. Ensure you’ve set a scale for the graph paper, such as 1 square representing 1 square meter. This consistent scale will allow for more accurate approximations.
  3. By overlaying your lawn’s sketch on this scaled graph paper, you can derive an approximation of the lawn’s area. For instance, if you count 50 squares within your sketched lawn, you’d estimate an area of 50 square meters.

Breaking Down Into Simpler Shapes

When confronted with a lawn that defies easy categorization, a divide-and-conquer strategy often works best:

  1. Start by dissecting your lawn into simpler, more manageable geometric figures – think rectangles, triangles, and circles.
  2. Measure each of these segmented shapes individually, employing the techniques tailored for each geometric figure.
  3. After calculating the area for each segment, combine them to derive the total area for your irregularly shaped lawn.

When these methodologies are employed in tandem, they can demystify even the most perplexing of lawns. With these measurements in hand, you’ll be better equipped to calculate how much turf you need for your new lawn.

Once you’ve ascertained the area, diving into “How to lay turf properly” will ensure that your new turf is laid seamlessly, transforming your space into a verdant haven. The number of rolls required and the exact measure of the area are paramount to achieving that dreamy new lawn look.



Additional Considerations in Measuring Your Lawn for Turf

Beyond the basic geometric configurations, certain nuances in lawn landscapes can influence the exact area you need to measure for turf. Two pivotal considerations include:

Considering Slopes and Gradients

Slopes and gradients add dimensionality to your lawn, making the task of measuring slightly more intricate:

  1. For lawns punctuated by inclines or declines, it’s essential to segment these areas. Measure the length and width of each sloped section separately.
  2. Calculate the area in metres for each segment based on its geometric shape. Slopes often mean that you will need a little more turf than a flat area of the same size, given the incline. Additionally, turf that has rooted on slopes might require a bit more care to ensure they remains in the soil and is established quickly.

Accounting for Pathways or Non-turfed Areas

Not all areas within your garden’s boundaries may require turf. Here’s how you navigate these sections:

  1. Identify pathways or other non-turfed expanses within your lawn. While turf is sold by the square, these regions will not require it.
  2. For each of these sections, simply measure the length and width, and then calculate the amount of area they occupy.
  3. Subtract the total area of these non-turfed sections from the overall lawn area. This will give you the area genuinely requiring turf.

Importance of Ordering Extra Turf

An important step is to choose a suitable turf to match the London climate. Then choose the total number of rolls of grass you will order. Given the unpredictable nature of lawn shaping, especially for those lawns in metres with unique designs or a significant width of the area, there’s a higher chance of encountering challenges.

When you’re in the process of transforming your garden space, accounting for cutting and shaping becomes pivotal. This becomes particularly pertinent for lawns with irregular contours, slopes, or gradients. Such areas may require a more intricate approach to cut turf, and without extra, you might find yourself falling short.

Now, imagine you’ve measured your lawn quickly, but later discover a slight miscalculation. The chances of measurement errors are why experts often recommend ordering an extra 5-10% of turf.

It’s not just about ensuring you have sufficient grass seed but also to avoid the cumbersome process of having to lay additional turf later. Especially considering turf has rooted timeframes, any delay can hinder the seamless integration of the newly laid patches.

Furthermore, knowing the width of the circle or any other geometric shape in your garden can help you measure accurately. It’s still likely that your lawn might require more rolls than initially anticipated, as rolls are usually standardized in size.

Garden Preparation for Effective Turfing

When it comes to establishing a lush lawn, preparing your garden is a step you can’t afford to skip. Adequate preparation not only ensures the longevity of your turf but also enhances its aesthetics and health.

Soil Analysis and pH Balancing

Start with a deep dive into understanding the soil’s composition and pH levels. A standard turfgrass test can offer insights into the soil’s content, including parameters like pH, nitrogen, and organic matter. For the best turf management results, aim for a pH level between 6.0 to 7.0.

This range is widely recognized as the sweet spot for a low-maintenance and vibrant lawn. Should you find the pH levels straying from this ideal range, using a pH modifier can help achieve the balance necessary for thriving turf.

Topsoil and Fertilizer Essentials

Prepping the ground for laying turf demands quality topsoil. Introducing a layer can enrich the existing ground. Opt for a loamy soil variety, ensuring it’s devoid of herbicide residues, rocks, and weed seeds. A thorough mix with the garden’s native soil aids in uniformity.

To further enrich the soil, consider integrating compost or peat moss to boost organic content. Before initiating the turf laying services, scatter fertilizers evenly across the soil. This step acts as a nutrient booster, offering the turf a solid foundation to flourish.

While DIY methods have their charm, if you’re in the vicinity of London, exploring professional turf laying services in London can offer precision and tackle common turfing problems effectively. The success of your lawn lies in its foundation!


Measuring your garden accurately and preparing it for turfing can seem daunting. But Put those worries aside! With the right tools and a step-by-step approach, it becomes a simple task.

The foundation of a lush, green lawn starts with correct measurements and a well-prepared soil bed. So, grab your measuring tools, check your garden’s pH, and be on your way to a garden that not only looks good but thrives.