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When I view a geometry column in PgAdmin it is blank, why?

Compared to most data types, geometries are quite large. For some versions of PgAdmin, there is a maximum amount of data that can be show in a cell, and if the record is larger than that, the cell simply appears blank.

  • You can use ST_AsText() to get a human readable form of the geometry, but that might still be too large.
  • You can use a simplifying function, like ST_Centroid() to get a geometry that is small enough to visualize.
  • You can use a summary function, like ST_NPoints() to replace the geometry with a count of the number of vertices in the geometry.
  • In more recent versions of PgAdmin, you can click the “eye” icon in the cell to get a map visualization of the geometry.

Finally, it’s possible that your column does doesn’t have any geometry in it for some reason!

SELECT Count(*) FROM mytable WHERE geom IS NOT NULL