First steps to success with The Land App

The LandApp is one of a number of mapping tools on the market and it is one that is proving popular with NNCG group members and associates. With mapping becoming more and more important in planning farm activities in an efficient and visually clear manner, we thought it would be a good idea to take a look at how to get started with this piece of technology.

The following article has been written in the wake of a real-life learning experience, with one of the NNCG putting away their crayons and turning to technology instead. Along with the step-by-step learning process, we have identified some common errors that people make and also added some top tips to help farmers avoid making frustrating mistakes.

Both Charlie Ennals and Matilda Parr can offer help, advice and guidance on using the app and there is also a heap of really good Youtube videos on the the LandApp Youtube channel

It is important to make clear that this really is a beginners guide and the only way to increase knowledge and expertise is to have a go, ask questions and watch the videos or join the regular LandApp tutorials.

Step into a mapping wonderland…The LandApp – steps to success.

We would love you to feed into the guide by reporting any barriers you have discovered or top tips to get the most from the site. Any comments/feedback or suggestions, just email sarah@nncg.org.uk

Step 1

Log onto your free account at www.thelandapp.com

Create password and then go to the email you used to sign up where you will find a verification code. Activate your account using this code.

Step 2

Return to the LandApp site and log in.

Click ‘NEW’ on the drop down menu on the left-hand side.

Give your map a name

On Left hand side, next to PLANS, click NEW and then choose where to import your data from.

Choose from Land covers, land parcels or hedges. 

Step 3

On the next page, you choose your template and this choice depends upon what you are mapping – eg SFI, Countryside Stewardship, Woodland Creation template etc. 

For example: if you choose the SFI template, you can see all the options available to you on a parcel of land and the value of those options. 

The diagram below shows the SFI value of this plot of land planted to a flower rich grass block.

Depending on what option you choose, different features will be available. For the purposes of this information sheet, we are working with a ‘Blank’ map, which is the best option for creating a bespoke map for your particular needs.

Common errors #1:

One point to remember is that the different templates (Countryside Stewardship, SFI etc) give you different options in terms of features you can add to the map. For example, unless you are using the CS template, you will not be able to add in features such as an AB9 plot.

Actions

Once you have chosen your template, name your plan

(If you already have shape files, these can be imported)

On the screen, you will see the area you have chosen. If you click DATA LAYER on right hand side, you will be able to see automatically imported data such as the presence of ancient woodland, historic buildings, or any other designations.

If you click on the FOLDER icon on the right hand side of this page, you will see the area(s) of your current project. By clicking the shape next to AREA, you will see features within your project. 

Step 4 

To add features or details to your map, follow these steps:

      1. Click on the field you wish to add a feature to.

      1. Select DRAW from the horizontal tool bar.

      1. Choose the tool you would like to use – either from the drop-down menu under ‘Draw” or from the section of tools along the top of the screen 

    3b To add a buffer, choose the ‘Buffer’ tool (see pic below) and then choose side 1 or side 2 to select which side of the margin you would like your buffer strip.

    4. Each time you add a feature, double click to end editing and then click ‘FINISH’.

    5. Name each change by using the edit tool on the right-hand panel – you can select an assigned use by clicking ‘CHANGE’. Then select the use and click ‘CHANGE’ again.

    Step 5 – The pretty stuff

    Once you have mastered how to add features and assign their use, then you can start adding your own style. In the right hand panel there is an option called ‘STYLE’. If you select this, you can add colour to your features and change the thickness of various lines. 

    To see the plot from an aerial view, go to ‘StreetMap’ (top right-hand corner of screen. Then choose a free map, Bing is very good. 

    To add text to your map, click draw, choose ‘text’ from the horizontal tool bar , mark where you would like the text to appear and then click ‘Finish’. Move to right hand box, click three dots to find ‘edit’, then add the text. 

    Step 6 – Additional extras

    The row of icons above the horizontal tool bar are editing tools for use on the whole map rather than specific features. These include a tool to measure distance, the cloud icon allows you to download and export the map, the graph icon allows you to produce reports and the print icon allows you to print your downloaded map. 

    Step 7 – Creating the map

    To create your map, click the print icon; choose landscape or portrait; customise your map with the business logo by using tools available on the left-hand side of the screen. You can remove the LandApp logo by clicking the X next to the logo and customise all the information on your map. 

    To print the map, download as a PDF and print. 

    Benefit of a paid account:

    The benefit of a paid account is that you can then save that template. If you use the free account, then you need to re-do the information for each new mapping process. 

    Common errors #2

    Ensure that you have the correct piece of land with the correct features showing. Do this by ensuring the ‘eye’ icon is switched on to show the features you want to see on your map. Conversely, close the ‘eye’ for the features or land plots that you are not working on. 

    Top tip #1 If in doubt, the undo button will clear all changes. And for navigation purposes, wWhen adding features to your map, the left hand side of the screen is information, the right-hand side is where you add your bespoke details. 

    If you run into problems when you first trial your free LandApp account, then ping an email to Charlie or Matilda who are both experts when it comes to trouble shooting!