How to draw a rectangle over a specific region in a matplotlib graph


Question

I have a graph, computed from some data, drawn in matplotlib. I want to draw a rectangular region around the global maximum of this graph. I tried plt.axhspan, but the rectangle doesn't seem to appear when I call plt.show()

So, how can a rectangular region be drawn onto a matplotlib graph? Thanks!

1
36
10/22/2012 2:39:00 PM

Accepted Answer

The most likely reason is that you used data units for the x arguments when calling axhspan. From the function's docs (my emphasis):

y coords are in data units and x coords are in axes (relative 0-1) units.

So any rectangle stretching left of 0 or right of 1 is simply drawn off-plot.

An easy alternative might be to add a Rectangle to your axis (e.g., via plt.gca and add_patch); Rectangle uses data units for both dimensions. The following would add a grey rectangle with width & height of 1 centered on (2,3):

from matplotlib.patches import Rectangle
someX, someY = 2, 3
currentAxis = plt.gca()
currentAxis.add_patch(Rectangle((someX - .5, someY - .5), 1, 1, facecolor="grey"))
46
1/21/2014 9:51:15 AM

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