Farms Across Pennsylvania; A Closer Look Into How Many Farms Are In Each of Pennsylvania’s Counties

Farms In Pennsylvania (1)I decided to create my choropleth map on the number of farms in Pennsylvania by each county.  I have a strong passion and admiration for agriculture, and I think that people underestimate the number of farms that are in Pennsylvania.  Overall, I found that there is a total of 63,200 farms in Pennsylvania and that number even surprised me. I enjoy being able to advocate for agriculture, support local farmers, and preserving farmland. I chose Pennsylvania as my state of focus because that is where I was born and raised and the state that I currently live in.  I decided to break the geographic area down into counties in Pennsylvania because I thought that it would give us a good amount of data, yet not be overwhelming, plus it would show the size difference in the number of farms in each of the counties throughout PA well. As for units of measure I made each section by 499 starting at 0 and making my way up to 2,000 plus, I thought this would show good distribution in the size of the farms without being to broad in spectrum size. I chose to use the color green and different variations of the color throughout my choropleth graph of Pennsylvania County Farms because farming and agriculture incorporate a lot of green whenever you think about either of them relating to crops and land. I wanted to make the three most farm populated counties really noticeable to set them apart from the other data more, so I made them a really dark green, almost black to draw the contrast. I started my graphic with a downloaded image of Pennsylvania with the county lines drawn from  I then used Adobe Photoshop to individually select each of the counties and color them based on what number of farms they had per county and put them into their sized category.  After coloring each of the counties, I then went back through and labeled all of the counties to add some more context to the graphic since many people may not know where each county is in Pennsylvania.  After I finished with the Photoshop editing, I upload the document to Canva and added the finishing touches to the infographic by adding a title and a short introduction to the topic that I am covering in my Choropleth map. As for the amount of time it took to research my topic and design the map and infographic, it took me approximately an hour to collect the data I wanted to use and then probably a combined amount of 3 hours to work on the map and graphic.  One part that took a lot of time was figuring out the different categories and what increments to use for measuring different categories for instance should I measure in increments of 100s, 500s, or 1000s, with a few outlier numbers in the mix of data it made it hard to choose.  Another time-consuming part was going through each individual county in Photoshop and switching back and forth between tools when working to color and then go back through to label each of them. For font choices when designing the map and labeling I chose Arial Rounded MT Bold font size 10 with black coloring for the majority of the counties, except for Lancaster, York, and Washington due to the color fill being so dark, people would not be able to see black font on top of the fill. I purposely left some white space along the county lines so that the lines could be more distinctly seen from a distance and I thought it was a neat effect to not have everything so perfect.  I added a color legend in the bottom right hand corner of the map on the infographic and labeled which numbers went with which color to make it easier for the viewers to understand. 

Information Source: United States Department of Agriculture. (2019). Retrieved from

Original Blank map from


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s