Topsoil Calculator

Area (in ft.)
Depth (in in.)

An image illustrating the step-by-step process of using an Asphalt Calculator. The image shows a user entering the length, width, and thickness of a desired asphalt surface into the calculator's input fields. The next step displays the calculator automatically calculating the amount of asphalt required based on the entered dimensions. This image visually guides the user on how to use the Asphalt Calculator, a convenient tool for estimating the quantity of asphalt needed for a specific project.

Determining soil volumes for landscaping and gardening projects proves tricky. Thankfully, our user-friendly topsoil calculator simplifies cubic yardage calculations through basic dimension inputs.

key takeaways 

  1. Input area length, width and depth for estimates.
  2. It calculates total surface area needing coverage.
  3. More depth exponentially increases cubic yards.
  4. Use outputs for ordering bulk delivery or bags.
  5. Compare to bagged soil quantities for small projects.
  6. Add extra volume to account for compaction.
  7. Getting precise cubic yardage saves money.

Inroduction to the Topsoil Calculator

Topsoil forms the nutrient-rich upper layer of productive landscaping. However, quantifying materials needed for:

  • Lawn installation
  • Garden bed building
  • Filling raised beds
  • Leveling uneven ground

requires measurements accounting for:

  • Area surface dimensions
  • Required depth

Our calculator considers these spatial inputs for trimming project waste and budgets.

Using the Topsoil Calculator

In three quick steps, get cubic yardage estimates:

  1. Enter area length
  2. Enter area width
  3. Enter depth required
  4. Get cubic yard amount

For example, a garden bed that is:

  • 10 ft long
  • 5 ft wide
  • Requiring 6 inch depth

Requires ~2 cubic yards of topsoil for the job.

Now examine what happens behind the scenes for optimal utilization.

Factor Depth Into Volume Calculations

With the area flattened, attention shifts to the 3D shape formed based on depth specifications.

More depth exponentially increases total cubic yardage!

For example, with 50 sq ft area:

  • 3 inch depth needs 1 cu yard
  • 6 inch depth needs 2 cu yards - Twice the soil!

So accurately specify planting goals upfront before sourcing materials.

Converting Into Cubic Yardage

The final step converts square footage area and depth inches into cubic yards - the standard unit for quoting soil materials.

The calculator uses:

Cubic yards = (Area x Depth inches) / 324

Then rounding up slightly to the nearest whole cubic yardage for simpler purchasing without shortage.

Practical Cubic Yard Estimator Uses

The soil calculator assists various landscaping jobs:

🔹 Preparing new lawns

🔹 Leveling before foundation pours

🔹 Blending garden beds and borders

🔹 Filling raised planting boxes

🔹 Fixing erosion divots

Input actual site dimensions for truly optimized recommendations.

And with the estimate known, convey needs clearly to suppliers for delivery coordination.

Comparison to Bagged Soil Quantities

Many homeowners undertake small landscaping jobs using bagged topsoil for convenience. Bags typically contain 1/3 cubic foot of soil each.

Comparatively, 1 cubic yard equates to 27 cubic feet.

So in our 10 x 5 ft area example:

  • 2 cubic yards needed
  • That’s 2 x 27 = 54 bags required!

While sometimes unavoidable, bulk orders save heavy lifting.

Adjusting for Compaction and Grading

Two final considerations around limestone readying involve:

  • Compaction - Settling soil density
  • Grading - Adjusting exact slope smoothness

Add 10-15% extra cubic yardage to beginning measurements helping buffer these impacts for flawless finished products.

How Much Topsoil Do I Need?

Determining cubic yards of topsoil relies directly on your unique project specifications:

New Lawns

  • Total square footage of lawn being laid
  • Account for 6-8 inch depth
  • Have extra for grading adjustments

Garden Beds

  • Length x width dimensions
  • Standard 6-12 inch requirements
  • Boost 10% to enable plant rooting

Filling Raised Planters

  • Inside dimensions of planter walls as length x width
  • Exact depth of boxes determines needs
  • Fill within 2 inches of brim

Leveling Existing Soil

  • Identify low sections requiring elevation
  • Consider both area surface and depth increase needs
  • Blend new and old soil thoroughly

Measure each site independently pre-purchase for truly tailored recommendations. Accurate topsoil saves frustration!


Whether installing a lawn, filling planters, or leveling uneven patches, getting topsoil calculations right makes projects seamless. Leverage our handy soil calculator for optimizing cubic yards required through basic area and depth inputs. Elemental measurements transform landscapes!