How to calculate crop yield

Calculating and understanding the crop yields of different plots of land is essential for farmers who wish to run profitable businesses. Crop yield encompasses two factors: the amount of a particular crop that a piece of land can grow and the monetary value of those crops. Therefore, choosing to grow a particular crop that takes up a lot of space but may be very valuable may be better for a farmer than growing a lot of a cheaper crop. Farmers also need to take farm subsidies into account when they try to decide which crops will be most profitable.

Choose a representative area of your farm or garden to measure. You will measure certain statistics about this area and then use a crop yield calculator (see Resources) to apply these values to your entire farm, since it is usually impractical to count the number of plants or berries on your entire farm.

Measure the plot of land for which you want to calculate the crop yield. The crop yield calculator can handle square, rectangular, round and oblong areas, so you can choose almost any piece of land that you want for this exercise. You will need both the length and the width for a square or rectangular piece of land, or the diameter or average diameter for a round or oval-shaped patch.

Count the number of plants (or sellable units) that you have per square foot or square yard. You can choose the area based on the counting period that is most convenient to you. If you are selling the entire plant, count the number of plants that you have. However, if you are selling berries or similar crops, you may want to count the number of pounds per square yard or square foot. You might want to write this information down in a log book.

Find the unit price per plant or crop that you want to sell. Farmers can usually get this information from their distributors. If you are an independent gardener or small farmer, you can take a look at your local farmer’s market to gauge the value of your crops.

Access the crop yield calculator (see Resources).

Type the width and length (or the average diameter) of your patch, the crop price per unit and the number of plants or fruits that you grew per acre or square foot into the appropriate boxes.

Press “Calculate” and scroll down to see your results. The calculator will tell you your crop yield per area, and it will also calculate the value of those crops based on the market value that you entered into the calculator.

Multiply the value that the crop yield calculator gave you by the number of similar areas you have on your farm. For instance, if you measured and counted plants on one acre of your 50-acre farm, you would multiply your calculated crop yield by 50 to get the total yield for your farm.

Things You'll Need

  • Log notebook
  • Measuring tape
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Ethan Schwartz has been a scientific and freelance writer for a year, writing scientific literature for "Gene Therapy" and articles on education, health and personal finance for eHow. Schwartz graduated in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in biological sciences and will begin medical school in July 2010.