Best Lawn Fertilizer Spreaders Reviews for 2020

Best Lawn Fertilizer Spreaders Reviews

Fertilizing your lawn seasonally or after spring aeration helps give your turf the nutrient boost it needs to support vigorous growth throughout the long growing season. While there are some liquid lawn fertilizers on the market, most are reserved for relatively small lawns, that need a quick short-term boost of nitrogen, or they are for large-scale commercial purposes.

For the average homeowner granulated lawn fertilizers are usually the most effective in terms of providing your lawn with key nutrients for weeks instead of months. They also tend to be the most cost-effective in terms of how much money it costs to fertilize a large square footage area.

Of course, lawn fertilizer granules aren’t the sort of thing you should be applying by hand. Even with a pair of high-quality gloves on, you likely won’t be able to spread the fertilizer evenly. The net effect is a lawn that is under fertilized in some areas, yet over-fertilized to the point of suffering from burn-out in other areas.

What Is The Difference Between A Broadcast And A Drop Spreader?

The big difference between a drop spreader and a broadcast spreader is the way the pellets or granules are delivered from the hopper to the surrounding turf. This then impacts the overall coverage and the density that the payload is distributed.

A broadcast spreader takes a small stream of granules, seeds or pellets and delivers them to a rotating piece that sprays it out in a fan-like pattern. The size of the hole setting and the speed can also impact the distribution.

With a drop spreader the granules, seeds or pellets drop through evenly spaced holes to deposit the payload in a steady, consistent stream.

The Pros And Cons Of Using A Broadcast Spreader

The fan pattern that a broadcast spreader creates has an “Effective Width” that is approximately equal to 75-percent of its total reach. Let’s say that your broadcast spreader has an impressive total arc of 12-feet. Only the innermost 75-percent will have effective coverage. This means the central 9-feet of the fan will have the desired coverage, and the remaining 1.5-feet on the edge of the fan only has around 50% coverage. With this information in hand, you can start to plan your passes so that the 3-foot margins are getting covered on pass number 1 and again with another 50% at pass number 2.

Broadcast spreaders tend to be better for large yards that don’t have a lot of obstacles or tight landscaping features. They tend to struggle to provide effective coverage in tight areas. If you are going to be spreading fertilizer, weed killer or weed preventer near a sidewalk or boulevard, any excess that lands on sidewalks or roads may need to be cleaned up immediately. Some states level major fines for leaving lawn treatments on public places or where they can be accidentally washed into storm drains.

It’s also worth noting that the effective coverage of a broadcast spreader can sometimes be affected by wind. Especially if you are going to be spreading lightweight grass seed in advance of fertilizer. Ideally, you want calm conditions for reliable coverage.

The Pros And Cons Of Using A Drop Spreader

With a drop spreader the “Effective Coverage” is in the span between the two wheels. This gravity-fed system gives you a reliable spread that you can lay down in predictable rows. Though there are some lawn care experts who will argue that the best way to ensure maximum coverage is to set it to 50-percent and spread in a crosshatch pattern, rather than in rows.

That way you know for sure that the areas closest to the wheels are getting effective coverage and that you aren’t missing any spots. This is especially handy if you are going to be using the drop spreader to grass seed as well as lawn fertilizer.

The small coverage area per pass makes drop spreaders more appropriate for small lawns and for working around obstacles or landscaping features. A drop spreader also isn’t affected by the wind like a broadcast spreader is.

How Do I Fill A Lawn Spreader?

Regardless of whether you are using a broadcast or drop spreader, you want to make sure it’s in the “Off” position. It also helps to park it over a large piece of cardboard or a drop cloth. That way if you spill any seed or fertilizer you can clean it up without it spreading.

Then you can “Open” or turn the feed “On” once you are in motion. If possible, you want to use all of the payloads before stopping so you don’t accidentally jam some of the seed or granules in the distribution system. Then make sure to wash it out and wipe it down after every use.

The Best Broadcast Spreaders For Your Lawn

Titan 50 Lb. Fertilizer Broadcast Spreader

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Titan 50 Lb. Fertilizer Broadcast Spreader, Lawn Care and Ice Melter Yard...

Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM

This broadcast spreader has an impressive 50-pound maximum capacity. It also has heavy-duty tires to handle uneven terrain. You can also multitask it to spread rock salt or other granulated ice treatments in the winter.

Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini Broadcast Spreader

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Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini Broadcast Spreader (Holds up to 5,000 sq...

Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM

This is a lightweight spreader that weighs in at an easy to move 15-pounds. Scotts rates it to be able to spread up to 5,000 square feet of grass seeds or fine fertilizer granules. This makes it a good option for a medium to a small yard with a lot of open space.

Scotts Elite Spreader

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Scotts Elite Spreader

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Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM

The Elite is the largest of Scotts’ spreader line. It weighs in at just under 20-pounds and has dual rotors for superior coverage in the effective area. The tires and axles are also robust for taking uneven turf. It also has ergonomically designed hand controls and is rated to be able to cover up to 20,000 square feet in a single payload.

CRAFTSMAN CMXGZBF7124571 110-lb Tow Broadcast Spreader

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CRAFTSMAN CMXGZBF7124571 110-lb Tow Broadcast Spreader, Black

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Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM

Craftsman is one of the most well-established tool manufacturers, offering a wide range of lawn care equipment. Their CMXGZBF7124571 is designed to tow behind a riding lawn mower or lawn tractor. It has a total capacity of up to 110-pounds. It has a 10-foot wide broadcast pattern and will cover up to 17,500 square feet in a single payload.

The Best Drop Spreaders For Your Lawn

Scotts Turf Builder Classic Drop Spreader

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Scotts Turf Builder Classic Drop Spreader

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Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM
$61.48 $92.84

Scotts is one of the strongest names in the lawn equipment industry. Their Classic Drop Spreader has an impressive 22-inch line of coverage and the hopper can hold enough grass seed of granulated fertilizer to cover up to 10,000 square feet in a single payload.

Agri-Fab 45-0288 175-Pound Max Tow Behind Drop Spreader

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Agri-Fab 45-0288 175-Pound Max Tow Behind Drop Spreader, Black

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Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM

Agri-Fab tends to specialize in agricultural equipment, though they also have several units that crossover into residential and commercial lawncare. The Agri-Fab 45-0288 is a tow behind drop spreader with an impressive 175-pound capacity hopper. It has a robust 42-inch line of coverage and can cover up to 40,000 square feet or roughly one acre with a single payload.

Spyker P70-12010 Commercial Drop Spreader

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Spyker P70-12010 Commercial Drop Spreader

Last update was on: September 19, 2020 7:14 PM

This commercial drop spreader by Spyker was designed for commercial use or homeowners who need to maintain a large property. It has an impressive 36-inch line of coverage connected to a heavy-duty 120-pound capacity hopper.

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