How to Calculate Volume of Plant Pot

Written by carter mcbride
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How to Calculate Volume of Plant Pot
Use the right formula to calculate the volume of a pot. (calculator image by L. Shat from

Most potted plants are in pots shaped as hemispheres or cylinders. Determining the volume of a hemisphere allows a grower to calculate the amount of soil the pot will hold. The basic calculation for volume of a hemisphere is two-thirds times pi times the radius cubed, while the formula for cylinder volume is pi times the radius squared times the height.

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Things you need

  • Tape measure

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    Volume of a Hemisphere

  1. 1

    Measure the radius of the pot. The radius of a hemisphere is from the bottom of the pot to the top of the pot. For example, a pot has a radius of 2 feet.

  2. 2

    Cube the radius of the pot. In the example, 2 cubed is 2 times 2 times 2, which equals 8.

  3. 3

    Multiply the radius cubed by pi. Pi equals approximately 3.14. In the example, 8 times 3.14 equals 25.12.

  4. 4

    Multiply the number calculated in Step 3 by two-thirds. In the example, 2/3 times 25.12 equals approximately 16.75 cubic feet.

    Volume of a Cylinder

  1. 1

    Measure across the base of the pot. For example, the pot's base is 6 inches.

  2. 2

    Measure the height of the pot from top to bottom. In this example, the pot's height is 11 inches.

  3. 3

    Divide the base in half to calculate the radius of the pot. In the example, 6 inches divided by 2 equals a radius of 3 inches.

  4. 4

    Square the radius by multiplying the number by itself. In the example, 3 inches times 3 inches equals 9 square inches.

  5. 5

    Multiply the radius squared by the height and pi to calculate volume of the pot. Estimate pi as 3.14. In the example, 9 times 11 times 3.14 equals a volume of 310.86 cubic inches.

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