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Overlay Bar Graphs

This example shows how to overlay two bar graphs and specify the bar colors and widths. Then, it shows how to add a legend, display the grid lines, and specify the tick labels.

Create a bar graph. Set the bar width to 0.5 so that the bars use 50% of the available space. Specify the bar color by setting the FaceColor property to an RGB color value.

x = [1 2 3 4 5];
temp_high = [37 39 46 56 67];
w1 = 0.5;
bar(x,temp_high,w1,'FaceColor',[0.2 0.2 0.5])

Plot a second bar graph over the first bar graph. Use the hold function to retain the first graph. Set the bar width to .25 so that the bars use 25% of the available space. Specify a different RGB color value for the bar color.

temp_low = [22 24 32 41 50];
w2 = .25;
hold on
bar(x,temp_low,w2,'FaceColor',[0 0.7 0.7])
hold off

Add grid lines, a y-axis label, and a legend in the upper left corner. Specify the legend descriptions in the order that you create the graphs.

grid on
ylabel('Temperature (\circF)')
legend({'Average High','Average Low'},'Location','northwest')

Specify the x-axis tick labels by setting the XTick and XTickLabel properties of the axes object. The XTick property specifies tick value locations along the x-axis. The XTickLabel property specifies the text to use at each tick value. Rotate the labels using the XTickLabelRotation property. Starting in R2014b, you can use dot notation to set properties. If you are using an earlier release, use the set instead.

ax = gca;
ax.XTick = [1 2 3 4 5];
ax.XTickLabels = {'January','Februrary','March','April','May'};
ax.XTickLabelRotation = 45;

See Also

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