LS-MatCalc-2 is a landscape material calculator app. Available in the Google Play Store
- US and Metric Calculations
- Fill: Dirt/sand, mulch, crushed stone (aggregate).
- Patios/Walkways: Using flagstone.
- Pavers: Concrete pavers for patios/walkways.
- Stack Walls: Building Stone for walls/retaining walls.
- Pyramid: Monument (triangle or rectangle base).
- Ring/Firepit: Stone ring for firepit or flower bed.
- Tree Ring: Stone ring for bed around a tree.
- Mounds: Dirt or stone mound (round or elongated).
- Drainage ditch aggregate with pipe.
- Arcs and Arches.
The calculations for fill are for volume, usually in cubic feet (or cubic Meters), and the functions convert into cubic yards. A cubic yard is the standard measurement for the U.S. and many other countries. Many landscape supply companies will sell in 1/4 cu. yd. increments. Warning: Many small front-end loader buckets are not 1 cu. yd. Ask your vendor if they have a ‘measured' 1 yard bucket. (Some are only 0.7 to 0.8 cu. yd.). This is critical to getting the correct quantity of material.
Patios and walkways are essentially the same thing. A walkway is typically longer than wide, though. Measuring and calculations for them are the same. The material used does not matter for calculating the square footage (or meters) of the area. Width and length are all that are needed. The depth is irrelevant.
If you're using flagstone (or building stone) for your project, you will need to know the average thickness such as 1-1/2" to 2-1/2". Each thickness has a different square foot of coverage per ton. The L/S Material Calculator has the standard thicknesses and average sq. ft. coverage per ton. The average coverage per ton is important because if you place the flagstone pieces too close together, you will be short on material. And if you spread too far apart, you will have leftover. The average coverage per ton is figuring for a 3/4" to 1-1/2" gap between pieces. If you place tighter, add more material to your order (10%-15% minimum).
Metric calculations are based on cubic meters, density in Kg per Tonne and thickness in CM.
Pavers are usually a concrete product. Pavers (or tiles) can be used for flooring, patios and walkways. The only reason the calculations are separated from the "Patios/Walkways" section is because pavers are usually sold by square foot. Each paver manufacturer sells them differently. The sample data included in the L/S Material Calculator is based on the Tremron brand. These come in different thicknesses such as: 2-3/8", 1" (remodel). The pavers also come in different styles/sizes, such as 4" x 8", 3-Piece (6x9, 6x6, 4x6). The 2-3/8" thick 3-PC are sold by Tremron in full pallets only (124 Sq. Ft./Pallet); the 1" thick 3-PC are sold by full pallet of 207 Sq. Ft.
Some vendors will sell the pavers by layer. This app can handle data for that (the default sample data is already set for that). The documentation explains how to add your own data. Basically, you must know how the vendor sells it. If by full pallet only, then get the total Sq. Ft. per pallet, enter that as the SF Per Pallet and SF Per Unit, then select Pallet as the unit type. Enter 1 for min. order (unless they require more than 1 pallet for a minimum order). If they sell by layer, determine the Sq. Ft. per pallet, and number of layers on a pallet. Divide the total SF by the # of layers, to get SF per layer. Then enter your paver data accordingly. Example: 124 SF/pallet, 10 layers = 12.4 SF Per Layer. The app will calculate how many pallets (and/or layers) are needed for the project.
Stack walls are exactly what they sound like, stacked. A stack wall is made using either flagstone or building stone, usually building stone. Building stone is typically smaller pieces than flagstone and can range from a few inches wide to a foot or longer. The smaller pieces make it easier to build a narrow wall, such as a 1-foot thick wall about a foot or two high.
Wall calculations will need 3 dimensions, length, height and depth (width). The depth will be measured in inches like other calculations. The material is sold by the ton, usually, and sometimes by the pound. The generally accepted factor is about 15 cubic feet per ton of stone. Although some stone can vary from 13 to 17. The density is the key for the factor. Most contractors will use the 15 per rule for estimating. As always, you want to add approx. 15\% extra stone to your order, to allow for waste from cutting/chipping.
Density is averaged at 133 LBS per Cubic FT or (60.327736 KG per Cubic FT) which translates to 2130.4558985 KG per Cubic Meter or 2.1304558985 Metric Tons per Cubic Meter. Note, the real density is about 145 to 160 LBS per Cubic Ft. (of solid rock, i.e. no air space) We are using 133 LB because it is near impossible to stack stone without air space.
A ring calculation is useful for building round stone walls, such as a firepit.
A tree ring is a circular wall around a tree, usually with a filled area between the tree and the wall, such as mulch, dirt, gravel, etc. For those calculations you will need to measure the circumference of the tree (use a tailor's measuring tape [flexible]). Then decide how wide the filled area should be and how thick of a wall you want. Most walls for these average 8 inches to 14 inches.
Mounds are common, also. Many people like to mound the dirt in a flower bed, curving up toward the center. The elongated mound calculation is very complex, and the calculator handles it quickly. You will probably not get 100% accurate results because the amount of material needed varies with how well you round all of the edges.
A circular mound is known as a spherical cap, and there is a calculation for those, as well.
A drainage ditch is used for burying a drain pipe in aggregate, such as river rock or crushed lime rock. The ditch should be wide enough and high enough so the pipe only occupies about 1/3rd of the width and height. Example, for 4-inch diameter pipe, make a 12-inch x 12-inch hole by whatever length is needed. The calculator will total the cubic feet of the ditch and subtract the volume of the pipe, so you only order as much material as is needed, without having a large excess. This is more critical when using a large pipe, such as 2 ft or 3 ft diameter one (unusual).
An arc or arch is part of a circle, but less than a half-circle (semi-circle). It is also named a circle segment. This calculator will only work for a height of less than the circle radius (meaning it must be less than half of a circle. For a half-circle, use the ring calculator and dived the result by 2.
This calculation is complex to do by hand and requires multiple formulas to be used, one to get the radius from the width and height, and one to calculate the segmented circle area, which is based on the angle (in radians) from the width ends to the radius. See the Basic Landscaping Formulas book on our website for the full manual calculations.
Typically, the arch will have a small circle segment removed, such as an arched driveway. The calculator uses the width [C] and height [h] for both so it can subtract that area. The results will show the sq. ft. for the driveway and the sq. ft. for the removed section. If you plan to cover both areas, simply add the 2 sq. ft. values together to get the original total. Or, you can enter values of 0 for the C2 and h2 fields.