Selecting and Measuring 200 Square Feet

Need to lay out a planting bed for the next WaterSaver coupon? Measuring wheels and tapes are obvious choices. But you can also get creative with other, more handy tools from your garden shed.

I can say we’ve all learned a lot from previous coupon seasons. And if you participated, you know that landscaping is hard work! Deciding on a design, clearing away the existing grass like this or this, and simply figuring out how each bed is going to meet the 200-square-foot requirement can be more challenging than expected.

A 200-square-foot garden is bigger than you think. You don’t want to guesstimate it. Instead, use appropriate tools to calculate correctly.

Measuring wheels and measuring tapes are the obvious tools. If you don’t have one, you can easily pick one up at any dollar store, grocery store or home improvement store. These items are perfect for measuring new bed areas.

If necessary, get creative. Your watering hose or outdoor extension cords come in predefined lengths of 25, 50 or 100 feet. Take advantage of this convenience and use one as a flexible tool for measuring. This is especially helpful for measuring circular beds.

If you’re stumped about the design, step back and look at the bigger picture. Imagine what you want for the entire property and not just your first 200-square-foot project. Ask yourself these questions: How do I ultimately want my entire landscape to work for me? What style appeals to me the most?

Like most people, you’ll need to break your master landscape plan into manageable pieces and complete it over time. Our WaterSaver Landscape coupons are a great way to get that done! Do not forget to work with your HOA before beginning work.

Are you still having trouble? There’s nothing wrong with asking for help. Ask a neighbor, hire a landscaper, or check out for how-to videos and beautiful designs to get you off to a great start!

Picture of Erin Conant
Erin Conant
Erin Conant has a passion for all things related to plants. Our former SAWS conservation consultant is now at home with her family passionately establishing their own urban farm and spreading the word of water conservation.
Dig Deeper

Find expert advice on garden basics, landscape design, watering and year-round maintenance.